Does Your Dog Pull on the Leash? ...
Many dogs pull on the leash. Many trainers have lots of great ways of teaching dogs not to pull on the leash. Some dogs persist in pulling on the leash after we may have exhausted several methods of teaching the dog not to pull.
All methods of "animal" training have some form of praise, a reprimanding noise, a touch, etc to gain the animals attention or let the animal know what that human's noise and/or movements means. So the basis of "animal" training is to train the human to give the correct signal to the animal being trained.
You must remember that 'praise' or the 'reprimand' comes in hundreds of forms and each "beast" is different as to what they react to.
Two "praise" methods which I've had some success with are: -
- Verbally; Consist of voice and hands and is as simple as saying "You're a good dog!" in a happy and joyful voice while giving the dog a pat on the head or a rub on the chest.
- Food Rewards; Same as above method but include a reward (Kibble) as well as the voice praise
Obviously, there are more..........................
It should also be noted that there are many methods of training animals and it is beyond the extent of this web site to bring them all to you.
Listed below are the a few ways (with added 'names') I've found you can use to teach your dog to walk on a loose leash, obviously you know your dog better than I ever will over the "net", so you can pick the method best suited to you!
With your puppy dog sitting in the heel position (on your left side with her collar next to the seam in your pants), get your dogs attention and say clearly and forcefully enough to let the dog know you mean business "Billie, heel."; At the same time pass your left hand (at a slow to medium steady pace) between you and your dog , while stepping forward on your left foot., the praise the dog for coming with you
Once walking praise the dog when ever he/she is in the "Heel Position". The more praise, the more you'll have the dogs attention and the more successful this method will be.
If the dog lags behind you, verbally encourage the dog to catch you up, don't wait for the dog but encourage it to get to the hell position, never pull or tug on the leash to get the dog to catch up to you!
If your dog surges ( walks in front of you), a simple "check" on the leash with the command "Heel" and when the dogs in the heel position praise, let him/her know where you want them to be! Remember to praise when the dog does what you want.
Continue to build up distance that you walk and add turns as he/she improves in her ability to heel next to you. Always remember to add the praise when the dog is in the correct position.
The whole success of this method is PRAISE!
Try to keep this tip in your mind....."For every check on the chain or reprimanding voice the should be three (3) praising voices or a pat, cuddle or whatever".... You are taking the dog for a walk he/she shouldn't be taking you where they want to go!
(NOTE: After many years of experimenting with loose-leash walking, it is apparent that having the dog "to" heel is a great way to prevent pulling on leash!)
This method is the same as the STAR method without the "check" to the dog leash. Obviously this method can be very useful with smaller breeds or submissive dogs
Walk your dog on a 1.8m leash in another area with minimal distractions. Whenever your puppy dog is next to you, reach down and give her one piece of her dry kibble and/or heaps of praise.
I prefer the heaps of praise as it means I don't always have to have kibble's in my pocket when I go out with my dog (and I always have my voice and hands with me)
If the leash is loose, walk. If the leash is tight, become a tree.
It's one way but not one of my favourites, basically you stand still till the dog return to the heel position by itself and then praise it, obviously it's a method for VERY patient people
Similar method to the STAR or SOAR methods and usually implemented after trying them first or if you are an experienced Clicker Trainer, try the following:
- Use the STAR method, replacing the “Heel” with a click. NOTE: Many dogs seem to respond to the unique sound of the clicker after not responding to verbal requests and verbal praise.
- Use the SOAR method, clicking when your puppy dog is in the heel position and rewarding with one piece of dry kibble
There are people within The Sutherland Shire Dog Club that can help you further with this method, just call us or ask at the club house.