Leash Training an Older Dog: Things You Should and Shouldn’t Do
If you want to enjoy a good relationship with your dog, you need to be able to take them on walks. Unfortunately, many dogs don’t know how to walk on the lead. They tend to pull, which can be tiring but also dangerous for you and your dog. But the good thing is there is no issue proper training cannot solve, even if you have an older dog.
Read on for the things you should and should not do when leash training an older dog.
- Use the right leash
It is important that you use the right type of leash to train your older dog. The primary focus of your training sessions is to break a bad habit that can put you or your dog at risk, which is why you should pick a leash that is designed for training, such as nylon adjustable loop leads for dogs. It will make training more effective and help your pup learn and improve faster.
- Get your dog used to the leash
Once you have your leash, you need to get your dog accustomed to it. You also need to tackle any unhealthy excitement they might develop when they see a leash, such as barking or jumping. Before you start going out, take the leash and clip it on and off inside the house. This will get your dog used to it while also changing the assumption that wearing a leash means going out for a walk.
- Reward and praise good behavior
Positive reinforcement can work wonders during leash training. So, don’t forget to reward your older pup with treats and praise them for good behavior. Carry a few treats with you on your walks and let your dog have one when they walk calmly, listen to your cues, stand by next to you, and so on.
- Avoid punishment-based training techniques
Shock collars, prong collars, and choke chains should never be used when training a dog. Punishment-based training techniques such as these can do more harm than good. Not only can these devices physically harm your dog but also keep them from learning in a positive way.
- Don’t move when your dog pulls
Dogs pull because they are excited about all the new smells and sights. But when they do that, you shouldn’t pull back. This will create a wrong idea about such acts. So, stand still until your dog calms down, and then continue on your walk.
- Avoid starting out in a distracting environment
Begin leash training at home or a place where there are minimal distractions. This will help your dog learn the cues much quicker.
Puppies can often get away with doing naughty things like pulling at the leash because they are young. But with adult dogs, people expect better behavior. But it is important to keep in mind that leash training takes time. You cannot expect your adult dog to change their ingrained behavior in just a few days. Commit to daily training and use the right type of leash to make it more effective.
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