5 Tips for Successful Leash Manners Training
By Julie Roller, Power To The PawZ Education Trainer
1. Find the right equipment for you and your dog. The right collar, leash, small soft treats your dog loves, and comfortable walking shoes are essential for leash training. All of these will vary with your dog’s breed, size, and personality, so be sure to ask us what might be best for your unique situation.
2. Make it fun! As soon as training becomes work, it will not be fun for you or your dog. Your dog will feed off of your posture, voice, and body language. Vary your speed to keep them on their toes, and throw in a few turns in multiple directions to teach your dog to pay attention to where you are going.
3. Visualize what walking your dog on a loose leash means to you. This will vary with each person depending on their tolerance level but should be consistent within each family. Reward your dog when they are in just the proper position with slack in the leash by verbal praise and either treats or whatever their primary motivator might be (ball, food, attention, etc.)
4. Start leash training after your dog has already had some exercise and has worn the edge off. Please make sure they are hungry! This will draw their focus to you.
5. Be sure to teach your dog other basic cues such as sit, down, focus (“watch me”), stay, come, etc. This will keep training sessions from becoming boring and help with overall obedience and behavior. Consider taking a group class, this will help them learn to behave around other dogs and people, and they will learn to behave correctly in distracting situations. It will also increase your bond with your pup and establish a healthy relationship based on leadership and respect.
Tips not quite enough? Would you like some hands-on help?
Check out our upcoming workshops at www.powertothepawz.com to find the location and date that works for you!