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How To Stop Your Dog Pulling On A Lead

I get asked a lot of times to cure the pulling dog, dogs pull because they can and a lot of owners allow them to. I see people walking down high streets and lanes with their dog so far in front of them, they are out of control and their arms are at right angles to their bodies, they must be suffering, or will suffer by the time they get home. If your dog is pulling you it is not under your control, it is leading you, not the other way round. You can cure this quite easily by showing your dog who is the boss. I have seen people raise their hands to a pulling dog. Never, ever hit a dog. They will eventually turn on you and you will have even less control. No-one likes to walk their dog with their arm stretched out in front of them like a signpost. Dogs like to get where they are going as quick as they can, it gives them more time to play and have some fun. They like to think they are in charge of the pace you walk at and if you are not going quick enough for them they tend to pull you along at their pace. To stop this you need to be more strong willed than the dog. When he pulls you, stop, make him wait a few seconds and then move off again. If he still pulls you stop again. Wait a few seconds, make him sit and calm down before you move again. Once you have his attention move off again, if he pulls stop, turn around and head back the way you have come, your dog will not like this and although will walk with you he will not be happy. He will start to pull you again thinking that you are going somewhere else. Confuse him. Stop the moment he starts to pull and go back in the opposite direction. Your dog will soon get fed up with this and wonder what you are doing, he will watch you closely to see what you are going to do next. Some of my clients say they feel silly doing this so I ask them how they feel walking down the street with an out of control dog that is taking them for a walk not the other way round. Feel silly for a short while stopping and turning and eventually getting your dog to walk beside you, or feel silly for ever with your arm two feet in front of you. When you have his full attention. Walk forward keeping your dog on a short lead, the moment he starts to pull, stop and turn around again. If he walks close to you, give him the command 'heel', treat and praise him. Do this each time you have to correct him. He will be so confused and frustrated at not getting anywhere he will walk without pulling just so that he gets to go for his walk and wondering what you are going to do next. This may need to be repeated each time you walk your dog but eventually he will realise he gets where he wants to be quicker by walking to heel. If he looks as if he is going to pull again give him the command 'heel' and tighten the lead slightly letting him know that you are in control. If he stops pulling praise him and walk on. As with all dog training or re-training nothing is instant, you may find your dog will stop pulling almost straight away or he might take a week or even a month, but the more you persevere the quicker he will learn and walks will be a pleasure. You do not necessarily need a 'no pull' harness although they are extremely good, a lot of dogs manage to get these off defeating the object and resulting in you being frustrated. You will pass your frustration on to your dog and neither of you will enjoy the walk. This works equally well with a harness on your dog, it's the will power you possess that will win over your dogs will not the lead or harness.


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