The problem: Your dog pulls on the leash. As a puppy, pulling on the leash was still fun. Now your dog is fully grown, big and heavy. Your arm is getting longer and longer and your four-legged friend does not seem to give loose. Every walk is like running the gauntlet. In this article you will find valuable information on this topic:
Why do our dogs pull on a leash?
Most of the time, this misconduct already arises in puppyhood. Young dogs are particularly curious and easily distracted. Usually this behavior is tolerated in puppyhood because the dog is still small and light. This is how your dog learns, if I pull on the leash, then things move forward. There are experts who believe that keeping a dog on a leash is one of the most unnatural demands that humans can have on their four-legged friends.
Pull because it goes forward
Just imagine that you see the world through your dog's eyes. You two go for a walk and the hydrant smells particularly attractive, you want to smell it. Of course you would pull on the leash to get to the hydrant. However, if you tolerate this behavior as the owner, your dog will learn that pulling on a leash is okay. This entire sequence is self-rewarding for your dog. You move forward because your dog is pulling. Your dog learns through his body awareness. The line is on the pull, I'm moving forward.
So what to do if the dog pulls on the leash?
The solution seems so simple because WE have to become the object of greatest interest! But how do you do that?
Positive associations - start feeding your dog on a leash, playing with him, etc. Your dog will see the leash as something positive.
How to start leash training
The leash training is very strenuous for your four-legged friend. So start your training in a low-stimulus room. Preferably right at home. You can also make training easier for your dog by teaching him that there is a work mode and a leisure mode. This means that if your dog concentrates on a leash and pays you attention, then there is an immediate reward. If the concentration is no longer there, you signal to your dog, for example with a harness change, that it is now free time. It is important that you stay friendly, because leash training, or rather the trained misconduct (which your dog sees as a means to an end) to train, is associated with a lot of frustration in your dog. When everything is suddenly different, dogs don't know their way around. It is important to fill the loose leash with positive emotions and reactions.
"I pull - nothing works anymore, I walk well on the leash - it goes forward and my person is happy."
Possibility Number 1:
Dog pulls, human stands
With this method, you always stop as soon as there is tension on the leash. If your dog pulls, you just stop. This is telling your dog that you want his attention. Your dog cannot achieve its intended goal and is forced to call its attention to you. So pulling on the leash becomes pointless for the dog. You don't move on until your dog looks at you and releases the tension on the leash.
This training is time-consuming and in practice means that you have to stop around 30 times during a short walk. Do not give up hope, because consistency leads to the goal.
Dog pulls, man changes direction
Pulling = turning around is another way of stopping your dog from pulling on the leash. The principle is similar here. As soon as your dog pulls in one direction, you're walking in the opposite direction. With this change of direction you ensure that you are in the lead again. You play that until the training is over.
Training puppies is a little different. Because puppies are not able to walk quietly on a leash right from the start. This is because walking on a leash is something completely new to your pup. The attention span is therefore also very small. However, you can still start training. By slowly making the leash palatable to your puppy, exercising a little in the apartment or in the garden and taking a walk. If your puppy happens to be walking along nicely and paying you his attention, reward this immediately with treats and / or verbal confirmation.