One thing almost everyone can agree on is their desire to take their dog for a nice walk around their neighborhood and not have to feel embarrassed or apologetic for their dog’s behavior.
If you have a dog that is pulling, like it or not, it is because for every step you take forward that allows the dog to move forward while pulling, trains the dog that pulling is how to get places or see and sniff the things they want.
When your dog is on leash and pulling you towards something, as soon as he reaches the object of his desire he has just rewarded himself for pulling. Your dog now learns, “If I want to get there - I have to pull.”
As soon as there is tension on your dog’s leash, STOP!
Picture the beach or your happy place because you are going to find yourself standing still a lot in the next couple of weeks and, as always patience and consistency are key. When there is no longer tension on the leash, click or say “yes” and reward your dog.
Please note: the reward for not pulling is to continue walking forward or to keep moving close to the object of your dog’s desire. No food treats are required but may be used to help jump start those “perfect” pullers.
If you’re dog wants to see, smell or interact with anything (trees, people, other dogs, car ride, fire hydrants) a loose leash is the way to get there. Depending on your family members and your dog, we may recommend the use of a Gentle Leader or Sensi-Harness. These are fantastic aids for training and walking your dog. Most dogs show immediate improvement once a Gentle Leader or Sensi-Harness has been fitted properly. Many dogs will become calmer and most handlers gain confidence while using these training tools.
Be calm and consistent, your dog will make the connection. It takes most dogs 3 - 6 weeks of consistent practice before you will see a change in this behaviour.
Please see the following links for help with Leash Pulling...
http://www.clickertraining.com/node/541 - You may need an account to see full training instructions in the www.clickertraining.com library. Signing up is free, only takes a a minute and will provide you access to tons of great training resource articles!