How to leash train your puppy

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Dogs on a leash
See, no problem, walking on a leash!
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These steps to leash train your puppy will get him walking like a champ

Training your cute little puppy to walk on a leash is one of the most critical phases of dog obedience. The results, when done properly, can positively impact the way your new dog interacts with you and your family, on and off the leash.

The number one requirement, without question, is patience. Dog training requires repetition, thatís how dogs learn, and leash training a puppy is no different. Before you get started, find a good pet supply store and select a collar that fits your puppy and a sturdy, six-foot leash.

Step 1

If you puppy hasnít seen a dog collar yet, get her used to having one around her neck before starting to leash train your puppy. If sheís giving you a hard time, try putting it on when sheís playing or eating. The distraction of another activity should be all you need to rope that doggie.

Donít be alarmed when she starts rolling around attempting to either chew it off or dislodge it in some other manner; itís normal. I know if some oversized bi-ped slapped a choker on me Iíd try getting that thing off too, at least until I got used to it.

Step 2

Okay, now itís leash time. Itís understandable that you want nothing but the best for the pooch, but avoid going out and buying the diamond encrusted, genuine crocodile skin leash; at least initially. A simple thin, lightweight non-leather leash will do just fine for now. You can gussy her up with a top-of-the-line collar later.

Once the leash is clipped on, let her wander around the house for a bit, supervised of course. Sheíll get used to having it on soon enough; which youíll know once sheís forgotten about it.

Step 3

There a couple of things to keep in mind now that weíre close to moving outside for our first jaunt on the leash. First, keep the initial forays short and fun with A LOT of praise for every minor coup. Next, understand the objective of leash training a puppy: your pup should walk along side you, not in front as if sheís the alpha dog. Finally, donít pull on the leash if sheís trying to go too fast; it can hurt her and end up pulling your arm out of the socket; a lose-lose situation.

It's walk time

Alright, letís go for a walk (with a pocketful of treats, by the way)!

Start by walking around the familiar environs of your home. If she decides to plop down and not move, resist the urge to pull her. Rather, call her over and wait until she comes, praising her and giving her a treat when she does. The same applies if she takes off like a rocket; donít yank her back, but simply stop and call her. When she comes to you, and she will eventually, praise her and toss a treat her direction. The same rules apply when you head outside for the first time.

Thatís all there is to leash training your puppy!

It will involve a lot of starting and stopping, at least at first; this is why patience takes a front seat. But youíll find the rewards of your effort well worth it; more enjoyable walks, safer for the little gal since she wonít try and chase down cars, and leash training your puppy will set the tone for other training as she moves into adolescence.

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