We’ve walked hundreds of dogs of all ages, breeds, sizes, and energy levels over the years. Our experience leads us to believe that leash training is one of the most common challenges people have with their dogs. We know many folks who have done a great job teaching their pups the basics of good house manners, obedience commands, tricks, and even off-leash recall but still struggle with enjoyable leashed walks with their pups. These days, leash training is essential for the safety of our canine friends due to the increase in traffic, tighter leash laws, denser housing, HOA regulations and fussy neighbors, the potential for the dogs to get lost chasing rabbits, cats, and squirrels, and even to appease well-meaning people who are genuinely frightened of dogs for their own sake or that of their children.
As dog walkers and trainers with years of experience, we also know the toll pulling dogs can take on the bodies of both dog-walker and dog. And finally, walks should be a pleasant bonding experience that dogs and their humans share. We want to help our clients overcome those obstacles that challenge the canine/human relationship, and we want you to know that you can achieve success in teaching your dog to walk politely on a leash. That being said, it’s not quite as simple as popping on the correct no-pull harness or training collar and heading out the door. With our Walk and Train program, we’ll show you very simple exercises that you can practice with your dog, and we’ll get your dog started and reinforce the exercises on a regular basis to make it easier for you and your dog. Want to see an example of our loose-leash success? Below is a short video of one of our current trainees, a super-sweet and smart pitty named Buddy. In this video, Buddy has been on 3 Walk and Train walks and is really learning fast. Buddy’s Mom has a handout of the exercises we recommend, and she practices with Buddy as well. He’s getting lots of reinforcement from her and from us, so he is doing really well.
Loose-leash walking takes practice and evolves over time. In the beginning, dogs really need to know boundaries and do their best by learning to walk by your side. Over time, your dog will achieve more freedom to sniff and explore and will learn to respond both to the leash and your commands even when not directly in heel position.
For more info, check out our Walk and Train program or give us a call at (910)431-5680 to discuss your dog’s needs, ask questions, or set up a free consultation. And please, take advantage of these free resources. Click HERE to read our loose-leash walking tips, HERE to receive a free, downloadable PDF with simple loose-leash walking exercises you can try with your dog (courtesy of The Dog Alliance), and HERE for a copy of our very own basic training tips. Do you struggle to keep your dog at your side when you encounter cats, people, dogs, etc.? Click HERE for our handout “Working with Distractions While Dog Walking”.