Dogs love to go for walks in the park with their owners. Walks are excellent ways to exercise these animals, in addition to being very entertaining for them since they will not only be accompanied by their loved ones but also have the opportunity to explore new places.
It is advisable to give these animals two daily walks of 15 or 20 minutes each. They are excellent exercises that will meet their needs.
However, you should remember that walking can be frustrating, especially if your breed of dog is very hyperactive or has a tendency to run away.
Most people walk their dogs on a leash. However, not all canines like that; they prefer to be free to explore as much as possible during the walk. In their attempt to want to run from one side to another, they will pull hard, which will turn into a battle with their owner.
This situation could lead the owners of these animals to get frustrated and stop walking their pets, but this is also negative since they will begin accumulating energy during the day and will try to release it in any way possible.
They will develop destructive behaviors that will be difficult to control, such as running around the house, chewing on targets, defecating and urinating everywhere, trying to escape, etc.
It is important to train your dog so that you can walk it on a leash without any problem. In this article, we will share 3 effective techniques that will help you educate your dog so that you and it can have a good time in the park:
Loose Leash Training
This training consists of teaching the dog to walk with you keeping a distance of 4-5 feet. That means your pet will learn to walk near you without pulling at any time since you will make it understand that this is the correct way to walk in the park.
There are several things you need to carry out this method:
- A collar or harness according to the size of your dog
- A leash between 4 and 6 feet long
- Treats to reward your pet
- Patience and perseverance
If you want your dog to learn to walk on a leash near you, make sure you follow these steps:
- Choose a suitable place to train your pet. Don’t start in an open space, as your dog might want to escape. It is recommended that you execute the first steps of training indoors.
- Begin by saying your pet’s name in a forceful tone of voice.
- Then take several steps forward as you speak and encourage your pet.
- Make sure to reward your dog as long as it stays by your side. Otherwise, repeat the process until that happens.
- Repeat the steps above, but use the leash and collar/harness this time.
- As the days go by, you should increase the difficulty of the training.
BAT Dog Training
Some dogs may have a bad habit of pulling while their owners walk them in the park. This type of behavior can cause frustration in people, and it is important to correct it so that these animals are easier to walk on a leash.
BAT is a training created by a dog trainer named Grisha Stewart, whose objective was not only to help these animals gain confidence and develop social skills but also to rehabilitate and prevent their reactivity.
Walking through the park requires a lot of trust from the dog and its owner to face stressful situations during walks. This training accomplishes that goal as it will let your dog know that the leash is there for safety reasons and not for something bad as it might think.
With this training, the leash will become a physical and mental connection between you and your pet.
Heel Walk Method
You might be surprised at how many variations you can consider when walking your dog. Teaching your dog to heel will allow it to move at the same pace as you by keeping a short distance from it and preventing any unfortunate events. In fact, with this training, it will not only follow you but also stop when you do.
Note that this method should not be used with extremely active dogs that need daily exercise and enough freedom to move and explore their surroundings. This technique is best for walking the dog in small places.
To carry out this type of training, you will need the same things we indicated in the first technique. Make sure to follow the next steps:
- Begin training indoors where there are no distractions. That way, your dog will be able to concentrate and focus all of its attention on you.
- At first, it may be advisable to train your pet off leash but after several days, do it on a leash.
- The next step is attracting your canine’s attention with its favorite treat. Have it position itself on your left side and reward it with that treat and praise if it does it correctly.
- It is time to take steps forward. You want to make sure that your dog moves at the same pace as you. This complicated process will take a long time, as your pet must be fully focused. That’s why you should reward it every time it does that correctly by staying by your side as you move.
- Once your dog has gotten used to moving at the same pace as you, increase the difficulty. You can now add obstacles and also change the speed at which you move.
- Use the heel signal if your dog always stays by your side as you move. The moment it gets into that position, reward it with treats.
- Keep practicing this with your dog and increase the difficulty each day as you must remember that in the street, you and it will find many distractions.
What Are the Most Common Mistakes We Make When We Notice Dogs Pull?
Several actions can make pulling a bad habit in these animals:
- Pulling on the leash when our canines do that, too, is one of the most frequent mistakes. If you pull hard on the leash, your dog will want to do the same with more intensity. Therefore, you should avoid pulling on the leash during a walk.
- You must prevent your pet from continuing to walk if you have stopped. Don’t reward your pet if it gets too far ahead of you during the walk or just doesn’t come back to your side.