How To Stop Dog Pulling Permanently! ULTIMATE Guide
My girlfriend walked into the house and stared at me with a pissed off expression on her face, covered in mud with scraps on her hands and knees!
I already had a pretty good idea what had happened to her… Not wanting to make the situation worse I asked the question… “What happened babe?”
Boy did I get an ear full!
Turns out my “idea of what happened” was right on the money…
Our 10-month-old Rottweiler got out of control while on his walk and pulled her suddenly when she was stepping off a curb, causing her to fall and injuring herself.
Normally I’m the one that walks Duke because he’s a really bad puller and hard to handle when he gets fixated on something.
After seeing her all banged up and frustrated I knew I had to do something about his pulling tendencies or else Duke and I were going to be in the dog house literally!
Hi there! My name is Jeff and today I wanted to share with you how I trained my 10-month-old Rottweiler puppy in 3 weeks to stop pulling while on the leash!
I stumbled across an extremely effective training program while frantically looking for a solution to my dogs pulling problem!
I’m going to break down all the key points of the program so keep reading…
We adopted Duke from a local shelter when he was about 4 months old, sadly the shelter life was the only life he had ever known up until that point.
He never got to play, go for walks, interact with other dogs or people.
When we found him, his spirit had been broken, he wouldn’t even come to the fence to greet us.
He was basically a zombie that didn’t care about anything… I’m not even sure he wanted to live at that point.
It broke our hearts seeing him that way! We instantly knew he was the dog we were meant to have, and we wanted to give him the best life we could possibly give him.
Adjusting To Normal Life
The very first day we brought him home he didn’t seem to know what to do… Or even how to react because everything was brand new to him.
It was basically the first time he had ever been outside of the dog shelter.
He eventually warmed up to his new surroundings and started to gradually come out of his shell.
When we took him for his first walk it was like a switch had been turned on, he immediately came alive!
He was so curious about everything…
If he saw something interesting he would immediately pull us in that direction, there was no stopping him!
Is this something your dog does?
It was quite cute and satisfying to see him so happy, unfortunately his size started to become a problem as he got older. At 8 months old Duke was nearly 90-lbs and still very curious about the world. All he wanted to do was check everything out for himself.
His pulling was becoming a huge problem because my girlfriend could no longer control him at all when he got excited. This lead to her being pulled down to the ground injuring herself.
Duke simply doesn’t understand how big and powerful he is and how much destruction he can cause without meaning to.
We love Duke dearly and want the best for him.
We really wanted to put him in dog training classes but everything we found was just too expensive.
Not to mention nothing we found would work with our work schedules since we both work second shift jobs.
Searching For A Dog Trainer
We didn’t want to go with a PetSmart dog training style course because we have heard way too many bad reviews on them.
I mean, have you seen how crowded they are? Just stroll by one day when you are picking up some pet supplies! That style of obedience training wasn’t for us.
We really preferred a private dog trainer but everyone we found was so expensive so that was out of the question.
Luckily, we somehow stumbled across something that actually worked with our schedule and was way cheaper than any private dog trainer on the market and was way better!
Relief At Last
My girlfriend came across our solution in a dog Facebook group that she had joined when we first got Duke.
She shared our story to the group about Duke, how he pulls us while on the leash all over the place and how he pulled her to the ground causing her to be covered in mud with scraps on her hands and knees.
One lady suggested an online dog training course that they’d all been following. We both immediately thought it was a silly idea…We didn’t understand how dog training online could even work?
The lady shared a link to the website this dog training course was on and curiosity got best of us both. We watched the introductory video on the home page and everything just made sense.
You can watch the video here to see what I mean. I even tried one of the tricks he teaches in the introductory video and you know what…it actually worked!
Now, I’m not going to show you everything in the course, you’ll have to go to the site and try it yourself. But I will cover the basics with you, and some awesome exercises that you can start immediately.
All of the exercises played a core role in fixing Dukes pulling problem.
How To Stop Dog Pulling
First off, we need to understand why dogs pull in the first place. Some dogs pull because they overly excited others pull because they catch a whiff of a new smell…
Dogs were born for the outdoors, so it is only natural they go a bit wild when they get back into their natural habitat.
All the new scents, sounds and sights often become overwhelming and your dog just can’t handle it! They become eager to explore and forget that they have a two-legged human attached to them.
Which results in us being pulled down the street!
Tips To Stop Your Dog From Pulling
If your dog is less than perfect on the leash, stay calm! I am going to show you exactly what you can do to fix the issue.
1. Exercise Your Dog
If you want a well-behaved dog, you should be exercising them every single day.
It is not in your best interest to walk them on a leash straight off the bat… Well… not yet that anyways.
I mean you are reading this right now because your dog probably doesn’t do so well on the leash…
Alternative Ways To Exercise Your Dog
There are tons of ways to exercise a dog besides walking them lets cover the main ones, shall we!
An excellent way to drain a good amount of your dog energy in a short amount of time.
The benefits of playing tug with your dog
- Intense mental and physical workout
- Strengthens your bond with your dog
- Creates a distraction when training
- Teaches impulse control
The simplest and most effective way to get your dogs energy out. You cannot go wrong with a game of fetch.
The benefits of playing fetch with your dog
- Intense mental and physical workout
- Strengthens your bond with your dog
- Combats obesity
- Passively train sit, stay, leave it, and drop it commands
Why use play to teach your dog to walk nicely on a leash?
Stimulation… It all comes back to how you can stimulate your dog. Play provides the ultimate stimulation outlet physically and mentally.
Did you know…
Neurochemicals associated with pleasure and bonding are released in a dogs brain when they have positive interactions with humans?
Which is directly tied to the reason they learn so much easier and faster when they are having a good time during training.
The more enjoyable you make the experience the better.
2. Reward Your Dog
Before you attempt to take your dog for a walk you should establish a clear reward system.
This reward can be anything that your dog LOVES… I put emphasizes on love because the crazier your dog is about the reward the better.
The best rewards are one of two things fir most dogs. The first being a treat, dogs love food! So, what better way to reward them then right?
The second reward would be toys, we all know that the majority of dogs go bonkers over a toy.
Implementing The Reward System
This task is pretty straight forward.
Just take the reward you have chosen for your dog on the walk with you… yeah that’s pretty much it. There is a tad bit more to it than that. So, allow me to explain.
1. Dog Treats
While using dog treats your main objective is correction and reward.
You are walking along, and your dog notices a cat, simply call out to your dog to look at you.
If you have trouble gaining their attention, then wave the treat in front of them. Then direct them into a sit, then reward them once more.
You then can attempt to proceed with your walk. Repeat as necessary.
2. Dog Toys
While using dog toys your main objective is distraction and reward.
You are walking along, and your dog notices another dog. At this point your main goal is to be more interesting than the other dog.
Pull out the toy and engage in play! If it is a toy your dog really loves, then they will be fixated on the toy and not the dog.
Tug toys do best since you can walk and tug at the same time. Keep the reward toy out for very short periods of time only when you need them.
3. Over Come Distractions
Unless you live in the middle of no where you are always going to have distractions. Actually, I take that back a dog will become distracted by the wind…
Your main goal is to combat those distractions to the best of your ability. Which means sometimes you will just need to create distance between the distraction and the dog. Nobody can out run the wind though…
Someone is riding their bike down the sidewalk coming directly towards you.
What do you do?
Well, you could move to the opposite side of the street or move over into the grass and ask your dog to sit until the bike passes.
The more fun and exciting you are around your dog the more likely they will pay attention to you and walk nicely on the leash.
Your main goals will be to…
A: Create distance
B: Get them focused on you
C: Use a treat or toy to reclaim their focus
4. Keep Them Guessing
Sounds like an odd tip, right? Yeah, I thought so too… but I promise it will make sense.
The idea behind this exercise is to not allow your dog to get comfortable. Your dog should never feel like they know exactly where they will be headed.
Dogs are smart they know exactly where they are, especially if they are familiar with the area. That means they know EXACTLY where all the fun and interesting spots are!
When your dog tries to pull, quickly change directions on them. This will allow you to remain in control at all times. Remember, you are the leader of the walk not your dog.
1. Keep Things Fresh
If you can you should always try to go on new routes just, try to mix things up time to time. If you always go on the same one your dog will have their favorite spots and they WILL pull you to get to them.
Going on the same route can have a negative affect on your overall leash training and set your dog back.
2. Be One Step Ahead
Dogs need a strong leader otherwise they are going to take on that role. Which means you need to always be one step ahead of them so that you can assure that you make the choices!
You can accomplish this by paying more attention to your dogs body language.
If you have been an owner of the dog for more than a few months you should be able to instantly tell when they are about to pull or become interested in something just by watching how they act.
Remember, at the very moment your dog starts to become excited and start to pull you should immediately change directions on them!
- Make direct eye contact when switching directions
- Reward with a treat or a toy
- Do not jerk or pull your dog at any point. This is very counterproductive and unnecessary.
This training will take some time for most dogs, it will require that you stay very consistent for many weeks! Even months in some rare cases.
But be rest assured it will be well worth it in the end.
Your dog will eventually catch on that you are the leader and that it is much more fun to allow you to lead them on the walk.
Food For Thought
Humans bred dogs hundreds of years ago to aid us when we were hunters and gathers. Fast forward a few hundred years, that bond has become even stronger.
Your dog will prefer your company over anyone else’s.
If for some reason your dog doesn’t, then you should utilize all the training tips!
Play, treats and toys are all great ways to bond with your dog and will directly aid you in their training.
You want to be exciting for your dog! You want them to be fixated on you rather than the wind… meaning every little distraction shouldn’t entertain them more than being with you.
The world will be full of distractions! Your goal is to become more entertaining than those distractions and to remain the leader at all times.
Above all just be patient and enjoy the process and remain 100% focused on your dog and their needs and everything will fall into place.
What If Your Dog Doesn’t Stop Pulling?
If you have attempted to follow the suggested tips and still have leash pulling problems, then it’s time to seek professional help.
That doesn’t mean you need to go out and find a local dog trainer and pay hundreds or thousands of dollars.
Leash pulling is very dangerous the last thing you want is for your dog to pull someone down, break free and harm someone or themselves.
Don’t wait until it’s too late…your dog deserves better!
I was able to train Duke to walk calmly while on the leash with the help of all the tips I shared with you today! I have also been able to proactively train him in many different areas. Jumping being the worst but that’s a thing of the past and it’s all thinks to… TheOnlineDogTrainer.Com
Hopefully the training tips I covered in the article were enough to get you started on solving your dog’s leash pulling.
If you feel like you need further guidance, with clear step by step instructions. I would highly suggest checking out the online dog trainer.
Doggy Dan has everything you will need and more to solve your dog’s jumping problems.
If you have any questions, please feel to leave me a comment!
Have a great day and good luck!
Common Leash Pulling Questions
Dog Holding Leash In Mouth
Your dog is bored, they need stimulation. Which means you need to interact with them more. Use the tips I outlined about using toys and treats.
Dog Pulls On Leash Now Coughing
If your dog is only coughing when they pull, then there is nothing to worry about. If the coughing lasts more than a few hours, then you might want to consult a vet.
Should I Use A Choke Collar On My Dog
No, I highly advise against using any type of choke collar or chain.
Should I Use A Shock Collar On My Dog
No, these types of devices are not practical and abusive.
Why Use A Dog Harness?
A dog harness, will provide better control over your dog because it discourages pulling and jumping.
How Long Does It Take To Train Your Dog To Stop Pulling
Every dog will be different, so there will be no defined answer. The process can take a few weeks upwards to a few months. It really depends on your dog and your dedication.
Don’t let that discourage you though, because you will be able to break them from the habit. Especially if you implement the tips I covered today.