Leash Training a Puppy: How to Leash Train a Puppy or Dog

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Hi, I'm Kathy Santo for Iams with Howdini, and today we're

going to talk about how to leash train your puppy.

Once your puppy is around eight weeks old, you can begin

leash training.

The first thing he'll need is a collar or harness that fits

your puppy appropriately, never too loose or too tight.

You should be able to fit two fingers between the collar and

your puppy's neck.

When deciding between using a collar or harness, there are

few things to consider.

Does your puppy have any respiratory issues?

Does your puppy pull when being walked on leash?

Use a harness or head halter if your puppy pulls on leash

or has respiratory problems.

Before you can jump right in training, you'll need to get

your puppy used to wearing a collar and having the added

weight of a leash.

The best thing to do is have him wear the collar or harness

and leash around the house, so he

becomes used to the feeling.

Be sure to keep an eye on your puppy to make sure he doesn't

get trapped, caught, or accidentally injured.

If your puppy is noticeably struggling or looks scared,

start off with a shoe lace or a small piece of rope so he

can get used to dragging only a little something around.

This will help him get used to the added presence and weight

of a collar and leash.

Now for walking on a leash.

The leash should have some slack.

Because when you put pressure on a dog, their natural reflex

is to move or pull in the opposite direction.

If you find that your puppy is afraid of walking with the

leash, try placing treats along the route you know

you'll be walking to give him the notion that

good times are ahead.

That way he learns to focus on what's ahead of him with

curiosity and not fear.

As you begin walking your puppy, you will notice that

your pace will sometimes have to be faster than you expect

to retain slack in the leash.

The more you work with your puppy, the quicker you'll be

able to train him to slow down while

maintaining the needed slack.

As you walk around, begin incorporating specific

commands for your puppy.

Basic commands include sit, stay, and heal, or let's go.

Do your best to remain consistent with your commands

and guide your puppy through the learning process.

For example, when you say sit, guide your puppy to sit until

the command is recognized by the puppy.

When you say heel, make sure your puppy is obeying your

command before you start walking again.

When your puppy starts to move ahead too quickly, come to a

complete stop and wait for him to cease pulling

before going forward.

Practice this stop and go, never allowing your puppy to

dictate your pace.

If your puppy continues to pull on his leash, ask him to

change directions while saying turn.

This while condition your puppy to always look for you

for direction instead of him feeling like he can dictate

where the two of you go next.

I also like to run backwards and then switch

to a different direction.

This gets your puppy excited about chasing you.

Remember to reward your puppy when he does the right thing

so that he begins to understand what

you're asking him for.

If your puppy still isn't catching on, try upgrading

your treats, practicing in an area with fewer distractions,

or working on more basic commands.

Leash training takes time and patience.

Both you and your puppy may give frustrated during the

learning process.

Do your best to avoid tugging.

It's not fair to correct them for something they don't


As your dog enters adolescence and clearly knows the

difference between right and wrong, it's OK to give a

slight occasional tug on his leash if he

insists on being difficult.

If you remain patient and consistent with your puppy,

he'll be leashed trained in no time.

I'm Kathy Santo for Iams with Howdini and I hope that you've

found this helpful as you welcome your new addition to

your family.

For more information on puppy care and training, visit