Leash manners can be taught in small iterations, beginning with teaching dogs to come to your side instead of pulling when the leash is tight and to move slowly to keep up with your speed.
We all know that dogs are great, and they respond to commands and treats with joy and enthusiasm, but we must remember that they can also pull and lunge. A dog that walks on a leash without pulling or tugging is considered a dog with good leash manners.
How to Teach a Dog Leash Manners?
On a walk with your dog, you may notice a number of things. For one, a big dog may be a bit grumpy, and a small dog may slink away. No matter the owner, the dog will continue to look for a route and will explore its surroundings.
Our motive here is to let them walk safely while being close to us all the time.
Choose a Dog Treat
Humans love to get rewarded when they achieve something. Similarly, a dog won’t mind a yummy treat after following the instruction of the owner.
It encourages dogs to obey commands and makes dog training easy. You can opt for different dog treats that are available or just go with deli meat, chicken jerky, or hot dogs. Do not forget to break the treat into small bite-size pieces and use them at the time of training.
Get a Durable Dog Leash
Select an Open Space like a Park or Garden
You can start teaching leash manners to a small puppy in your lounge. Moreover, for leash training a grown dog, it is recommended to visit a park or an open space where the dog can freely roam around and walk with minimum or no distraction.
At first train your dog in the backyard of your house.
Be patient while teaching leash manners to your dog
Continue practicing leash manners with your dog whenever he is on the leash. Create a perception that walking on a loose leash without pulling is rewarding. Practice leash manners in the back yard then as your dog gets comfortable on the leash and won’t pull take them outside for a training session.
Once you encounter any pressure on the leash handle, just stop and stand stiff don’t move forward until the dog releases the pressure. Do this every time the dog starts pulling and when he releases the leash give him some treat as a token of appreciation.
It is also important to tell the dog to stay close to you. So, keep the treat in hand near your legs so, that dog will come to get the treat. In the process, he will learn that being close to the dog owner is rewarding as well.
Keep the training session short and fun
Do not push your dog to exhaustion. This may put a negative impact on his mood and will only make learning polite leash manners difficult. Keep the training session short and focused. You can break each training session into 5 parts each day which means that when the dog shows positive behavior 5 times in a training session it is more than enough for the day.
Stop walking when dog starts pulling
If your dog is a heavy puller and pulls on the leash frequently, start with taking a single step at a time and when pulling starts, stop and wait for the leash to loosen up then start again.
Reward dogs generously
Don’t hesitate on rewarding dog on good behavior. Break the dog treat into small chunks and give the dog treat whenever he completes a task or starts obeying your command after a slight moment of delay.
Interact with dog owner and learn
You can also learn from the experiences of other dog owners whose dogs used to pull on the leash and gave them a tough time.
Some Proven Tips for Polite Leash Manners
Below are 3 pro tips and tricks that can help with teaching leash manners to any dog.
Stay calm and take 3 steps at a time
To teach a dog that had never been under leash training, at first the dog usually pulls. So, take 3 step at the start and see if the dogs start to pull, if he does wait for the leash to loosen up then say, “good job” and reward with a treat. Take another 3 steps and if your dog does not pull reward with treat as he had just practiced good leash manners.
In the beginning keep the session close to 3 to 4 minutes, do not get over excited if the dog obeys your every time or get dishearten if he is does not. Stick to the 3 to 4 minutes and then gradually increase the training time. However, do not overdo training as this might get the dog exhausted.
Start training in the backyard first
For the first few training sessions keep them within your home surroundings or in the backyard. When there is minimal leash pulling, you can now take the dog to a nearby park or in the neighborhood for a walk on a leash.
Keep in mind that such places can be crowded and distracting for a dog to concentrate, so first, think that if the dog is ready or not to train in such places. Remember to keep the training session short and fun.
Give the dog enough sniffing opportunities
Dogs possess a very sensitive sense of smell, and it is a great source of information for them. Giving them enough sniffing time will keep their mood calm and will help in the training sessions.
However, do not overdo as the primary goal is to teach leash manners. If you observe that the dog is attracted to some spot and started pulling, give him time to sniff around the spot until the dog loosens the leash.
Final Thoughts | Leash Manners
Remember, patience is the key in training your dog for leash manners. Start training in the backyard, standstill when the dog starts pulling, and do not hesitate to reward for good behavior.
After some time, your dog will learn that walking politely on a loose leash and staying close to you is rewarded, and soon polite leash manners will become a part of your dog’s habitual behavior.