Here are the basics of leash training and some effective tips and tricks that’ll help you and your pet.
–by Kritika Manchanda
Leash training usually begins when your pup is about 16 weeks old. This is the time when all his core vaccinations are complete. Here’s how to get started.
Pick the right leash and collar
For a pup, a light collar is ideal for the first few months when he’ll not be stepping out of the house. Once your pup is little older, get him a light collar and a leash. For the naughty and the hyper active pups, body leash is a good idea. They won’t tug at the neck and this way the possibility of hurting also decreases.
It is a golden rule to introduce anything new to your pet very slowly. This holds true for training methods. With pups, you need to be extra cautious.Let him get accustomed to the leash and the collar. For the first few times, put the leash and the collar together.You can let the collar be tied for long times if it is soft and is not tied very tightly. In the initial stages if the collar is tied too tightly, your pup might develop a fear of the collar. Puppies grow very fast, so it is important to adjust the size of his collar as he grows. The rule is that you should be able to slip two fingers comfortably under the collar.
Practice walking with leash indoor
You should understand that the concept of leash is new for your pup and he needs time to adjust. It is a great idea to give him a couple of practice sessions indoor before going for an actual outdoor walk.Clip on the collar and the leash and walk indoor – around the house, porch, balcony, and garage. This would help your pup adjust to the leash and you’ll also know how much is he tugging or pulling.
Combine leash training with obedience training
Obedience training is a must for pups, and so is leash training. The basics like sit, stay, heel and down should be taught to the pup. Once your pup becomes used to the collar and the leash, you can begin obedience training.
Preventing leash tugging
If you dread walking your dog because his favourite is leash tugging, then we understand your pain. Leash tugging can be dangerous for your furry buddy. They can injure themselves and even injure somebody else. A little tugging is ok, but if your dog becomes super excited, then that is a matter of concern and needs to be controlled. Puppies tug due to excitement or fear, and both are dangerous. Teach him that pulling on the leash does not get him where he wants to go. Reward him with a treat when he walks in the direction you want.
Walk time=Leash time
Most dogs relate walk time to leash time. They become super excited and might start running around. Let the excitement settle, and let him run around for a while. After a few minutes, put on the leash and gently tug. This would be a signal to go out and slowly your little one will start relating to it.
Patience is the key
Like we always say, patience is the key to the lock of training. Whether it is leash training or any other training, you have to be patient with your pet. Make rules, but be flexible with them.