Walking with your dog is one of the most enjoyable ventures pet owners can enjoy. With our 6 simple steps to walk your dog with ease, you and your pet will be ready to hit the trails in no time! Our steps will take you from start to finish for what you need to have pleasant excursions with your pet.
1. Obtain a proper fitting collar and leash
The first step to walking with your dog is to get a properly fitting collar and leash. Make sure the collar is loose enough that you can only fit two fingers underneath it easily. This usually is comfortable for the dog but also tight enough they cannot slip the collar off easily. A martingale collar is one of the most popular choices to keep your dog safe. It offers a quick release button so in case of emergency you can remove the collar quickly if needed. This dog collar will also keep your dog from getting free easily which provides an extra safety benefit while training the 6 simple steps to walk your dog with ease.
2. Building confidence on a lead
Always associate putting your dog’s collar and leash on with something positive. Practicing with your dog by petting around the neck and giving them rewards as you place your collar and leash on will help them want to be excited about going on their daily walk. Practice this in many places to help build a good experience with them so that they will associate putting on the leash and collar as a positive situation. One of the best ways to build confidence with a leash is to have your dog drag the leash without you holding it as they walk beside you.
3. Luring your dog is one of the 6 simple steps to walk your dog with ease
Using a valuable reward such as a toy or a very tasty treat, you can encourage your dog to follow you and teach them where you want them to be. Marking your desired behavior with the word “NICE!” before you reward your pet will increase the chances of this behavior repeating itself. The goal is to teach our dogs to always walk beside us. Using a fence or some sort of barrier with the dog in between will help decrease distractions and teach them where they should be walking. Timing is crucial so try to reward in the best moments when your dog is beside you.
4. Capturing the moment
With very little practice, capturing the moment will help increase the desired behavior of your dog walking beside you. When we show our dogs that we are excited and happy when they are next to us, they will be more adept to repeat the behavior. The desired result is for the dog to be right next to use with their focus on the handler. Even though you may not have your leash and collar on at the time, every time your dog makes the correct choice to walk and stand beside you, praise with “NICE!” and reward with a treat if possible. Remember “NICE!” is your marker, it does not have to be followed with a treat.
5. Changing pace and direction
Keeping your dog guessing will teach your dog to focus on you. Walking backward and changing directions quickly will keep your dog guessing what direction you are going. Remember our goal is to always keep our dog focused on us. Making the 6 simple steps to walk your dog with ease a little more interesting by changing our pace or direction, the dog will always be wondering what we are doing and looking to us for guidance. Turning towards your dog into a circle will decrease pulling if they start to have this problem.
6. Stop And Go
Dogs tend to want to learn to pull to keep them in their comfort zone, but our goal is to keep them walking on a loose leash. Using the stop and go method requires crucial timing to stop before your dog learns to pull. Practice this method by stopping and going with a different number of steps each time. Increasing your steps slowly while trying to maintain a loose leash while you are walking. It is good to combine the other 6 steps to walk your dog with ease to decrease the time it takes to train them to walk on a loose leash. The best practice is to always end on a good moment.
These 6 steps to walk your dog with ease will make your time going on walks more enjoyable. This will give you and your dog more opportunities to go out into the world and meet friends! Remain confident and enjoy time with your friend as you teach them the new skill of walking with ease. Where do you and your dog enjoy walking the most?