Training a dog can be tough and it takes plenty of tossed techniques and trial and error before a dog finally starts to understand. Some people choose to hire a professional trainer, however any owner has the ability to take on the challenge of training themselves. All that is needed is dedication and plenty of patience. Dog training is a journey, and whether your dog is an adult or a pup it can still be hard work. It is important for a dog to be leash trained – it teaches them discipline, allows them to be aware of their surroundings and shows respect for other dogs, owners and general pedestrians passing by. Just like any other training, leash training can be difficult but as long as you know the right steps to take as well as patience, your dog will master the leash in no time.
What Is Leash Training and Why Is It Important?
Leash training is a necessary part of a dog’s development and is usually performed when they are a puppy.
However, this may be needed for a grown dog depending on circumstances.
Leash training is the process of getting a dog to wear a leash and behave appropriately whilst doing so.
This is so that a dog can be walked calmly and efficiently without causing any harm or disturbance.
Leash training is very important as it is a key stage of development.
When a baby learns to walk, run and play they are also taught when it is appropriate and not appropriate to do so; for example, we would teach our toddler not run in a busy mall and to stay close.
A puppy is just as excitable as they discover the thrill of running around in the grass and playing. However this is not appropriate to do when walking down the street on a leash.
It is necessary to train our dogs to wear and walk in a leash to teach them self discipline and also out of respect for people walking by.
Benefits of Leash Training
Leash training means:
- Less accidents
- Less stress on owner
- Enjoyable walks
- A solid bond with your dog
How To Leash Train Your Dog
Just like any training, leash training can be hard work (especially if you are dealing with an excitable little pup!) You will be having to dealing with constant exploring, running (maybe even zoomies), pulling and tugging and this is enough to make any owner lose patience.
You may be wondering how trainers master the act of leash training and you will be pleasantly surprised to know that it is much easier than you think!
To give you a helping hand, we have put together a guide on how to leash train your dog, helping you to improve on your methods and get your dog trained as soon as you know it.
Step 1 – Prepare Yourself
Before even thinking about taking your dog out for a walk it is important to be prepared.
Make sure that your dog is wearing a comfortable collar and harness as there may be some tugging involved – you don’t want to hurt your dog.
Get them used to the feel of the collar and harness too by letting them wear it around the house.
You should also have some treats on your person; this will act as a reward to show them they are doing things right. Remember that positive reinforcement is better than yelling at your dog!
Step 2 – Indoor Practice
You do not only have to train your dog outside. Try walking your dog inside the house or around the garden. By doing this you are getting your dog used to the idea and feeling of being walked and getting him ready for the big world outside.
Step 3 – Keep It Short
Dogs who are in need of leash training are generally excitable and are prone to running around and exploring anything and everything.
Getting your dog to walk sensibly by your side is a process and can be a lot for a dog to take in. Because of this it is recommended to keep your leash training sessions short and sweet.
There is no need to rush the process.
Step 4 – Walking By Your Side
The end purpose is to get your dog to walk calmly by your side and there are many ways to achieve this. It is important to keep your dog’s leash short.
This will stop them from wandering off too far and keep them securely next to you; eventually they will get used to the notion of walking by your side.
As well as this, treats help to guide them in the right direction. If they are not wandering off or running circles around you, give them a treat.
If they are walking in a straight line (even if this only lasts for 30 seconds) give them a treat. They will soon see the link between treats and their behavior.
Step 5 – Progression
Eventually, your dog will have progressed enough to give them more freedom. Try extending the length of their leash little by little and see if they still walk by your side.
Reward them with treats less until they are not required anymore.
How To Leash Train A Dog – Final Thoughts
Training your dog is an exciting time. You are teaching them obedience, discipline and respect whilst forming a strong bond and relationship.
However, it can also be a stressful time. Constant tugging, pulling and running in circles around your legs is enough for anyone to go crazy.
But this long process is all worth it and much easier than you think!
Everything you do is for the benefit of your dog, yourself and the people around you. There are many ways to leash train your dog and all it takes is the right method.
Try taking practice runs in the comfort of your home. Then move on to your backyard before going for walks around the neighborhood and in parks.
Get them used to the feel of the collar and harness by letting them wear it in the house. Communicate with your dog through treats.
Leash training can be a long process but all that work will not go to waste.