If you could change one thing about your dog, I would estimate that 9 out of 10 pet owners would say they wished their dog did not pull when walking on the lead. This article will explain why dogs pull on their leash and how you can stop this unwanted behaviour with methods used by top dog trainers.
By nature, dogs are pack animals and will instinctively follow a dog or person they accept as their pack leader. It therefore follows that in order to live in harmony with people; a dog must accept his human owner as pack leader. This is easier to achieve when raising a puppy with the required knowledge and skills, which will help him learn what acceptable behaviour is and what is not.
Pets that pull on the lead have not been trained to walk correctly. They may also not be getting sufficient exercise or mental sti8mulation, and have not accepted their owner as pack leader. Where pet owners do not have the skills and knowledge to train their dog and be a calm, assertive pack leader, the dog may decide that he must assume this role himself. This can lead to numerous unwanted behaviours in the dog. Here are some techniques used by dog trainers to prevent dogs pulling on the lead:
• Keep on a very short lead, with the dog on your left side. Use the command "heel" and reward regularly with treats to keep your dogs attention on you. Stop walking, and only move forward when the dog becomes calm. The dog will respond better if you walk with a brisk pace, as this is his more natural gait. This is particularly true for large, energetic breeds.
• Carry a bag of treats and reward your dog for staying by your side and keeping his attention on you.
• With the dog on a loose lead, stop or change direction when your dog pulls. Say the word "heel" as you tap your thigh lightly. If he does not respond, give a gentle tug on the lead. Continue until the dog starts pulling, and then change direction again.
• Only let your dog off the lead after he has walked at your side for 10 - 15 minutes. After 10 minutes of walking off lead and having the freedom to sniff around, put his leash back on and repeat the on lead walking session.
Dogs may respond differently to the various training methods, so you should find out what works best for your own dog. In addition to using the above methods, there are some excellent dog halters and harnesses which help to control your dog.