Going on a nice long walk is one of the pleasures of having a four-legged friend, but not so much if your dog pulls on their lead. An excitable, strong dog pulling on the lead during walkies can be uncomfortable and even dangerous. Don’t let pulling on the lead take all the pleasure out of those precious dog walks.
But don’t worry, there are things you can do. Lead pulling is a very common problem with many dogs but you can improve things with the right equipment and/or some training. When confronted with an exciting walk or stimulating sights like other dogs and squirrels, it is easy for dogs to set a brisk pace, continuously pulling at their leads. And as soon as you give in to their antics, they learn that lead pulling works, and the issue becomes so much worse.
However, as said before, a few simple tips and training tricks will soon get your dog walking with more patience so your walks can be the fun experience they should be. So let’s get started!
Non-pull dog harness
Normal dog collars and leads can be extremely frustrating for both you and your dog if the dog has a pulling problem. Attaching the lead directly to the collar on a dog who pulls can also damage their neck and windpipe.
The EzyDog no-pull crosscheck dog harness is a new and innovative way to keep your dog in check and you in control when your dog is on lead. The non-pull girth checking system snuggly fits your dog’s body and reduces pulling via their body rather than more traditional head and nose non-pull head-gear. This dog harness is also escape-proof. Woof! It eases pulling, putting you back in control on walks.
Treats and distance training
If your dog gets overly excited at the dog park or simply wants to chase squirrels when on a calm evening walk, it will not be easy to lead-train them. Start in a familiar, secluded area with no distractions such as your garden. Keep treats handy so you can reward your dog for appropriate behavior. You can also take their favorite toy with you so that they only wish to walk at your side to be with their toy.
Walk them without a lead first and then with a lead to see how they are faring. Once they are consistently walking sensibly on lead, move to another area that is still familiar and not too exciting like your driveway or in front of your house. Your dog stays in familiar surroundings and is less likely to charge ahead or pull abruptly. Reward them each time they stop when you stop and change directions often so that your dog learns to stay with you.
Taut lead training
Dogs are very observant, and every single change in your demeanor slowly becomes a set routine for them. For instance, if your dog notices that you are likely to give in when they constantly bug you for treats, they will more likely show you the puppy eyes and do their trick so that you relent.
Similarly, when you go for a walk, if you let your dog set the pace they will keep on running and pulling on the lead until you do as they say. The best way to overcome this is to simply stand completely still when the lead goes taut. Do not budge from your position. As you stand and refuse to give in to the antics of your dog, they begin to understand that they can’t go anywhere until you say so. As soon as they realize that you are not going to move unless they stop pulling, they will start paying more heed to your wishes.
Dual D-rings harness
If you have a big dog or a particularly unruly dog, dual D-ring dog harnesses are the perfect solution. The two D-rings provide two lead attachment points on the harness – one at the front and the other at the back of your dog. This gives you amazing control over your dog’s forward and sideways movements on lead.
Red Dingo’s Dual D-ring Dog Harness is a great training or non-pull harness to try. They come with soft padding and adjustable straps for the perfect fit. Pair it with a double-ended training dog lead for complete control on walks. Simply clip each end of the training lead to the front and back D-rings of the harness and hold the lead with both hands to easily control your dog’s front and side movement.
Using different training harnesses
If you are likely to take your dog out while you are running or heading out to work in a hurry and allow them to set a brisk pace, it can be very confusing for your dog when you begin their no-pull training. After all, the dog will wonder why it is okay to run at times and not at others. Hence, the one great way to set distinction is to use different harnesses for when pulling or running is allowed and another for when they shouldn’t pull.
Use a more soft, padded, and sturdy harness when on no-pull training. As your dog pulls and you do not relent, the soft material will save their backs. For other times, use collars or a harness of your choice, which is distinct enough for your dog to know the difference. While it will take a considerable amount of time for your dog to get used to these new changes, once they do, walks will be much more fun and relaxing.
Lead training can take time so be patient. With consistency and patience, you will soon be rewarded with a very calm dog who anticipates your commands and accepts your control. Do try these tips and happy walking!