Train Dog to Heel with a Leash

Teaching your dog to heel (walk beside you without pulling) while on a leash is one of the basics of obedience training. It is important to always keep your dog on a leash while out at least until he has proven his obedience in all types of situations. There are some breeds that should never be let off of the leash when out in public not even when highly trained. To teach your dog to walk calmly besides you while on a leash follow the following steps. Make sure to have plenty of yummy rewards ready for your dog.

  1. If your dog is still a puppy and unfamiliar with a leash you must give him time to become accustomed to this. Let him smell and investigate the leash that you are holding in your hands.
  2. Now put the leash on him but do not pull on it or in anyway try to guide yet. Praise him for letting you put the leash on him. He should equate the leash with fun good stuff.
  3. Command your dog to "Sit" and making sure that your dog is on your left hold the end of the leash with your right hand and put your left hand on the leash about halfway between you and your dog's collar. Use your left hand to control the amount of tension in the leash that your dog feels.
  4. Give the command "Heel" and begin walking. If your dog is walking too far ahead apply a little pressure to the leash to bring him back to your side.
  5. Again repeat the command "Heel" and come to a stop. Command your dog to "Sit." If he follows your instructions then make sure to reward him and praise him.
  6. Repeat until your dog can perform without problems.
  7. Now while walking turn to the right and with your left hand just above your dog's collar guide him to the right along with you giving the command "Heel."
  8. Repeat the previous step to teach your dog to follow you to the left.

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