It goes without saying that all dogs love to go on walks. Not only do they love to go on walks, but they also like to go places with their owners. They get to be outside, which most dogs love, and chances are going for a walk could mean that they will have some interaction with other dogs.This seems like such a good time for both pet and owner. For example, in Reno, a walk along the river downtown can lead to an impromptu decision to grab lunch, or maybe a drink at one of the local eateries along the river. This is a perfect option for your dogs that are well mannered on a leash. On the other side, what about the pets who have absolutely no idea how to act on a leash?
Having a pet that does not know proper leash etiquette is hard. It makes owners dread taking their dogs out on walks or into public. Sometimes dogs that do not know how to walk on a leash properly need to go through an entire training course to fix the problems, or it could just be a simple fix like getting a different type of leash. No matter what the problem is, it is important to fix the problem, so you are able to take your dog out to get some additional exercise, or just to enjoy some time together. There are some simple changes that you can make in order to get your dog to have proper leash etiquette.
The first step I mentioned previously. Getting the correct type of collar for your dog. While most people who want to solve the problem quickly will jump to a choke chain or pinch collar, that is not the answers. Those types of collars will often cause dogs not to want to walk on a leash at all. If your dog pulls a lot I would try a head harness. There are several out there such as the Gentle Leader or the Halti Head Harness. Both of these harnesses allow you to control your dogs from underneath their snout, instead of around their neck. It allows for more control when your dogs is wanting to pull. They are very rewarding once your dog gets used to having something around their nose and mouth, but once they do, it will work wonders. Additionally, for dogs that do not have good leash etiquette, you should use a standard 6 ft leash, and not a retractable leash.
The next step is to tire your dog out to an extent before taking them out on a walk. This will calm them down, and they will have a better chance of being able to focus on the commands that you are giving them. It is also important to train with your dog in an environment that is going to foster success. For example, you do not want to walk them to a dog park where there are too many distractions. A walk around your block is usually a great place to start, if there are not too many dogs in your neighborhood that bark.
The last step is to not give up. It is not an easy task trying to train your dog, especially if they are adult dogs and very stuck in their own ways, but it can be done. It may be frustrating if they do not get it right away, but the key is to keep on it. Get in a training routine, like every evening take them on a walk around the block. Practice the fundamentals with them everyday, and they will learn. The problem that most dogs have when trying to learn new things is that it is not consistent enough for the to remember. They need to be worked daily in order for it to become a routine for them. Once they learn the proper leash etiquette it is important to not let them get away with anything else. Consistency is key.
Does anyone else have any tips for proper leash etiquette? Please leave a comment!