Training your Dog for Walks

Dog
Dog

Rocky Cullens, DDS, is the president of Tulsa Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery and is also the only oral maxillofacial surgeon at WW Hastings Hospital. A lover of dogs, Dr. Rocky Cullens enjoys taking his two dogs for walks.

Training your dog to walk on a leash can be an involved process, but when done consistently, can be very rewarding. Here are a few tips to train your dog to walk on a leash:

1. Walk ahead of your dog.

By walking ahead, you become the pack leader and the dog will follow you wherever you go. If your dog walks in front of you, he is the leader. Set the pace before the walk by being first at the door. During the walk, have your dog either behind you or next to you.

2. Use a short leash.

Short leashes give you greater control over your dog. Attach the leash around the top of your dog’s head, allowing you to easily communicate direction and to correct your dog.

3. Start with short walks.

All dog walks should be training sessions until your dog learns how to walk without pulling on his leash. Training sessions should be brief, numerous, and enjoyable.

4. Tire your dog out before the walk.

Dogs pull because they have too much energy. Find a way to tire your dog before going for a walk. Play tag or fetch in your backyard to expend your dog’s excess energy before hitting the trail.

5. Reward your dog.

Once your dog has learned to be well-behaved during walks, allow him to relieve himself or let him sniff around.

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