How to Train Your Puppy to Walk On A Leash

Training Your Puppy to Walk On A Leash

‍Remember the first time you took your dog for a walk? You probably spent most of the outing wondering if Fido would make it back home with all appendages intact.

And we’re not talking about getting stuck in a ditch or having to chase him around the block a few times before he came back panting happily at you.

Walking your dog is one of the most important things you can do as a new pet parent. After all, being able to trust your pup to come when called and stay somewhere safe is essential for keeping them healthy and happy.

A leash and collar are essential tools for any dog owner. A leash gives you control over your dog while they explore their surroundings. Here’s how you can train your dog to walk on a leash:

What’s the Key to Leash Training?

Leash training is a multi-step process that requires patience and repetition. While you may wish to buckle up your dog to a collar and leash the very first time you take them out, this is not the best way to go about the process.

Instead, start by introducing your pup to their collar and leash inside the house. This will help them get used to the feel of the gear and make them more comfortable when it comes time to explore the outdoors.

Another key part of training your dog to walk on a leash is picking the right spot. You want a location that isn’t too busy, where you can easily create a stop-and-start pattern that’ll help your pup learn to walk on a leash without getting overwhelmed.

Make The Walking Process Fun

We know what you’re thinking… “Walk with my dog? Fun?” But it really can be, if you approach it the right way. Once your dog is used to the collar and leash, invite them to come along with you on an indoor walk.

This is a great way to get your pup acquainted with the leash and collar before taking them outside. Once that’s out of the way, try adding a game or two to the walk.

Find a spot where you can kick a ball around. This can be a great way to get some exercise and give your dog a chance to chase and retrieve. The more fun you can make it for your puppy, the more likely it will be accepting of a leash.

Or try rewarding your dog for coming when called. This can be a great way to make your dog more responsive to your calls.

Start With A Lightweight Leash

Once your dog is used to the collar and leash, you can begin to take them outside. The first thing you need to do is pick out a leash that’s appropriate for your dog.

This depends on breed, size and age, but generally speaking, you’ll want a lightweight leash that’s no more than 6 feet long. This will allow you to keep your pup close while they’re exploring their surroundings.

A good rule of thumb when picking out a leash is to envision your dog wearing their collar when they’re wearing the leash. You want the leash to be snug but not tight. You also want the leash to be comfortable for your dog so that they don’t mind having it on.

Reinforce Good Behaviour With Food

Once your dog has gotten used to the leash and collar, you can begin introducing them to a walk outdoors. By now, your pup should know how to walk on a leash.

They should be able to respond to “heel” or “come when called” (depending on the commands you’ve taught them). If not, now would be a great time to start practising those.

Once your dog has the leash walking pattern down, you can begin to reward them with their favourite treat. This will help them associate their good behaviour with food, making the process much easier.

Give Your Dog A Reward When They Come When Called

If your dog knows how to come when called, you can begin to reward them for their good behaviour. Your dog should have a toy they love to play with.

When they come when called, immediately give them the toy. This will help them associate responding to your call with receiving a reward. You’ll want to make sure the reward is immediate and consistent. If you wait too long, your dog won’t associate coming when called with their toy.

Bottom line

Every dog owner should learn how to train their dog to walk on a leash. Not only does it provide a good source of exercise for both you and your dog, but it also helps both of you learn how to communicate with each other and stay safe on the sidewalk.

There’s no set timeline for when you should begin walking your dog. It’s important to be sure your pup is comfortable with the collar and leash inside the house before taking them outside. And it’s important to remember that some dogs learn more slowly than others. This is not a sign of lower intelligence, but of other things like distractions or personality traits.

Don’t get frustrated if your dog takes a bit of time to get the hang of walking outside with you. With time and patience, they’ll get there.



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About the Author: Julie Souza

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