Every dog needs to be walked regularly. How you go about this is up to you, but many owners choose to use a leash when they take their dogs outside. Unfortunately, not all dogs are comfortable with being attached to the leash. If your dog has never worn a leash before or gets very anxious when he wears it, he may have trouble being so close to you without trying to break free.
If you’ve just bought a new collar and leash for your pup, try letting him sniff around them first. He might feel more comfortable if he’s interested in what they are at first instead of just viewing them as a collar and leash.
Your dog will be more relaxed around his leash if he’s not feeling anxious or scared about something else, like preparing for a bath. Try to wait until your dog is in a mellow mood before you start working with him on the leash.
If your dog feels overwhelmed by his collar, lead, and leash all at once, he may panic when you try to put them on his neck. Practice putting the collar on him first without attaching it to anything. If that goes smoothly, attach the lead, and let him wear both of those things around the house for a little while. When he’s comfortable with that, attach the leash and let him explore around your home with it on.
If your dog seems nervous about walking on a leash around your home or neighborhood, try walking slowly and calmly at first until he feels more relaxed. The goal is to avoid rushing up to him when you start working with this new equipment so that he doesn’t feel threatened in any way. Picking up the pace will make him feel like something bad is going to happen if he doesn’t move fast enough or in the right direction, which can make things worse in some cases.
When you reach a point where your dog is starting to enjoy walking with his leash on, it’s important that you reward him when he does things that you like. If your dog walks calmly at your side for a few seconds, give him a small treat and offer some affection. This shows him that positive reinforcement helps make the experience better for both of you, which will encourage him to keep walking calmly in the future.
Also, don’t try to force or push your dog into anything new. If he seems anxious and uncomfortable about wearing the leash after trying these steps, go back a few steps and practice there until he starts feeling more comfortable around it. Make it clear that you’re not forcing this step onto him before he considers it willingly and happily on his own. To find out more, reach out to us here at Dog Training Now Charleston. We are here to help!