Dog Pulling On Leash: How To Stop It

by Vivvy A
Dog Beagle Breed Standin on Green Grass

Dogs are usually excited to go outside for walks. This is fun for them. They get to meet other dogs, interact with the environment, chase balls and play in the mud. Being outside means freedom.

Dogs pull on their leash because they have learned that they get to go forward if they pull. The more they keep moving and the longer they are outside, the more chances they will get to explore. Most of the pulling is because of their excitement to explore, and to counter this behavior; you will have to train your dog to follow your lead.

Sometimes dogs pull on their leash because they see a threat and become aggressive to defend themselves from such a threat.

Some of the things your dog may react to as threats are; people, moving cars, noises, dogs, and other animals.

Here is a really helpful video from Zak George with tips to stop your dog from pulling its leash

What if Your Dog Refuses to Walk on a Leash?

Pug dog pulling on leash

If your dog refuses to walk on a leash, you must first associate the leash with something exciting for him. Play with your dog rather than just putting the leash on your dog’s neck and hoping that your dog walks freely. Get out his favorite toy, and distract him.

Maybe your dog is nervous, so being playful with him before you put on his leash will make him much more comfortable to do it. Do everything in increments at first, don’t expect him to be ok with everything right away, especially if this is new.

When he willingly allows you to put on the leash, reward him with a treat, “Good boy,” “Good girl,” rubbing your dog simultaneously. Every bit of positive reinforcement is creating a better bond between you and your dog.

This works for your dog, even if he is an older dog. You must be patient with your dog when you are just starting with his training. Understand that he may not be perfect on your first try.

Being patient does not mean letting him do as he pleases; it means encouraging him to do what you want. Engaging with him and trying to understand what gets him excited.

Here is another video from McCann Dog Training with 5 tips to stop your dog from pulling on its leash

4 Things You Can Do To Make Your Dog More Obedient

  1. Play with him, play some fetch. Get him an exciting toy that he likes.
  2. Engage with your dog, get his attention.
  3. Reward him whenever he obeys your commands.
  4. Provide positive reinforcement to him or her, “Good boy,” “Good girl.”

Playing With Your Dog and Holding His Attention

The first rule of dog training is to ensure that you have the time for your dog and that he is your main focus. If your dog is an aggressive, high-energy dog and likes to play fetch, it is a great idea to play some games of fetch with him before you start any training. Get his favorite toy, toss it or play some tug–war. Play with him, make things interesting.

Doing this is helping him to be more relaxed as you begin your training. It is a lot easier to train your dog once he has used up most of his energy.

Rewarding Your Dog Whenever He Obeys Your Commands

Dogs love treats, so make sure you have dog treats handy so that you can reward and encourage your dog when he does something the right way. When you start training your dog, this is a great incentive to get the behavior that you want from your dog. Treats keep him reliably engaged and obedient.

Adding treats to your dog training may also help your dog stop pulling on its leash.

Woman Feeding Dog Treats in the Park

Motivating your dog to walk freely is the goal that you are trying to achieve. It is important to constantly communicate with your dog and reward him every time he responds to you successfully. This is key to having a successful training session. Engaging your dog, getting his attention, and then rewarding him for keeping his attention.

You might be thinking that all I am saying are treats, but believe me, you are training your dog to be fully responsive to you and your commands. The more you do this, the more your dog will look to you before he does anything – You becoming the alpha.

Treats keep your dog’s focus on you, and over time you will not need treats as much as you would have had many sessions where your dog has been trained to be receptive to you.

How To Get Your Dog To Listen When He is Distracted?

There may be times when your dog is not as receptive; this may be because something else distracts him. Move away from whatever distraction that may be, whether another dog or animal. You are trying to regain his attention and rewarding him again as soon as you have got his attention.

It is important to teach your dog to obey your commands even when other dogs, animals, or people are around. To do this, slowly move your dog towards the distraction, with stops between intervals where you give your dog a command and give him a treat when he obeys.

Cute Dog in Green Park

Before you move closer towards the distraction, ensure that he engages with you like he was earlier. You are competing with the environment to keep your dog’s attention, and that’s ok because you hold the treats.

Teaching your dog how to respond to distractions around him before he is surprised by things like noises will help him react more successfully to his environment, and this will help you out tremendously when you decide to take him outside for walks.

Providing Positive Reinforcement To Your Dog

If you harness your power over your dog by using those dog treats and giving him positive reinforcements, he will most likely come around in time. Saying “Good boy” or “Good girl” while rubbing your dog’s body/head when your dog obeys you will only help him become more receptive to your commands. This creates a better relationship between you and him.

Labrador Retriever and Owner

No dog is a bad dog, and they can be great when we treat them the right way. A little patience will have you and your dog completing milestones in no time.

Your dog watches you. You have to control the environment that the is in. Be that alpha before he starts to think that the alpha position is vacant. Show him that you are the boss. The amazing thing is, if you follow the advice outlined here, you will have a lot of fun with your dog: rewards, engagement, and positive reinforcements.

5 Dog Treats To Help Stop Your Dog From Pulling On The Leash

You can use these dog treats to help with your dog training.

Rocco & Roxie Gourmet Jerky Sticks Dog Treats

Slow roasted delicious jerky sticks. Dogs are very irresistible to these natural and healthy treats. The treat has the smell of beef jerky. Perfect for training your dog. These are corn, soy, and gluten-free. Your dog will be obsessed with this treat! The flavors come in;

  • Beef
  • Chicken
  • Turkey

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Crunchy Biscuits

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Crunchy Dog Treat is made with chicken and turkey meat. Your dog will love these tasty treats. This is a great treat to use to train your excited and playful pup. Other flavors they have are;

  • Salmon
  • Duck
  • Red Meat

Milk-Bone Flavor Dog Treats

My dog loves these snacks and does not have the patience to wait for more. Your dogs will stop at nothing until they get this treat. Milk-Bone helps remove plaque, tartar buildup, cleans his teeth and freshens his breath. The flavors are;

  • Bacon
  • Beef
  • Chicken
  • Sausage
  • Turkey

Pup-Peroni Dog Snacks

This mouthwatering treat has three delicious flavors – bacon, sausage, and pepperoni – in one dog snack. Dogs will wake up for this treat – as they will with the other treats listed here. Your dogs may not fold your laundry correctly for this treat, but he’d never pee in your house if he knew that you’d give him a snack for being a good boy.

Purina Beggin’ Strips Adult Dog Treats

Who doesn’t love bacon? – I know dogs love bacon, and my dog is always beggin’ for some. This treat is made with real bacon, soft texture, and easy to tear. You can share one strip between two of your dogs if you like. Hey, if you give your dog a whole piece, he might do a backflip for you.

What Should You Do if Your Dog Doesn’t Like Treats?

If your doing is not receptive to a treat, it may be because the treat is of low value or that your dog is in a new environment that makes him nervous. Try to get treats for your dog that are made with real meat.

Every dog eats at some point, so your dog will need to eat something. Not eating treats at a particular moment may not mean that he doesn’t like treats.

Dog and Cat Eating in Bowls

Dog Leash Pulling Summary

You should have a really good understanding of how to stop your dog from pulling on its leash after reading the tips from this post and using the tips in the videos.

The relationship you and your dog have is the most important thing. You want to make sure that you are not doing anything that is harming that relationship. Using a choke chain or an electric collar will not make that relationship better.

If your dog needs a lot of patience to be better, that is what you have to give them. Understand that your dog sees your body language and reacts accordingly to it. Having a bond with your dog is a very important factor when training them. Your dogs need to feel like they can trust you.

Motivate your dog to want to listen to you and not forcing them to obey you. It will be much easier if you do this, and you are creating a healthier relationship with your dog that will last.

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