Are you a dog owner, or are you getting ready to become one? Do you need to learn more about how to walk your dog properly? Whether you’re getting a new dog soon or you’ve got an existing dog with poor leash manners, it’s important to learn everything you can about properly walking your pet.
Tips to Follow
Below, you’ll find a quick rundown of information to help you get started. With the help of this guide, you should be able to better understand your dog’s needs when you take them for a walk, and you should know more about how to walk them successfully, too.
1. Use the Right Leash
First, you’ll need to make sure you’re using the right leash for your pet’s needs. Some dogs respond better to certain types of leashes than others. If you’re teaching your dog how to walk politely, a longer leash can sometimes make a difference—but be sure they don’t have enough length to walk out into traffic. Some dogs walk more politely on a shorter leash. Work with your dog to figure out which method is right for their needs as well as for your own. Retractable leashes are available, however, it is easier to lose control of your pet with these and are not recommended especially during training.
2. Provide Plenty of Time to Explore
Dogs want to sniff and explore their surroundings on walks. While it’s okay to use quick bathroom breaks for your pet for most of her daily outings, they need to be given plenty of time to fully explore their environment when they are out on a walk.
Planning your walks early enough so that your pet can get plenty of stimulation from the world around them is recommended. This will also help them sleep better and stay calmer when they are back at home, as an added bonus.
3. Don’t Pull the Leash
You may be tempted to pull or tug on the leash when you feel your dog starts pulling. However, this creates more of a problem rather than resolving the issue. Instead, turn around and go in another direction, or stop and wait for your dog to stop pulling before you begin walking again.
Additionally, although you should always be the one leading and in control of the walk, you shouldn’t drag your dog where you want them to go. This will just make them fearful and confused, which can create a worse walking situation for you both.
4. Stick to One Side
Dogs do best on walks that encourage a routine. Pick the side of your body where you want your dog to walk, and stick to that side at all times (unless there is a safety reason to change).
The more you walk your dog on the same side of your body, the easier it will be for them to respond appropriately during walks. You will also learn how to control them better with time, too.
5. Use Rewards
If your dog has trouble staying patient and calm on a leash, bring along plenty of high-value treats to reward them for good behavior. If they stay calm on the leash when you see another human or dog, for example, give them a treat and praise to let them know this is the correct behavior.
You may also encourage your dog to walk comfortably alongside you rather than pulling the leash by using treats. Hold treats in your fist and keep your fist near your dog’s nose while you walk them. This will entice them to walk and sniff your hand, keeping your pet at your side.
6. Turn Around if Needed
Don’t be so stuck on the route you had in mind that you can’t adjust and accommodate as needed for your pet. If you’re walking down a specific road and notice several dogs being walked ahead of you, this may be a good time to turn and go another way.
Additionally, if your dog pulls a lot on their leash, then you should promptly turn around and take them in the opposite direction every time they do this. With time, your pet will learn that they are not getting to go where they wants to just because they are tugging.
Contact Orlando Vets for More Dog Walking Tips
Based on this information, you can easily see which areas your dog may need to work on when it comes to walking. Although some dogs pick up the concept of walking politely on a leash very quickly, others may take a while to get to that point.
The good news is that almost all dogs can eventually walk on a leash properly, but it may take a lot of time and effort on your part to help your pet accomplish this task. If you have any further questions, contact Orlando Vets by calling one of our locations. We will be there to help you and your pet every step of the way.
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