Walking on a Loose Leash – with distractions
Walking on a loose lead in your house or around the garden is easy once you and your dog have learnt the basic pattern of following your hand each step on a loose lead. This is because in your house and garden, YOU are the most interesting, exciting thing going on. Unfortunately on a walk, there are sniffs and smells, other dogs and animals, people, traffic and allsorts of things that are more interesting for a dog.
When you start to introduce distractions, start off small and build up to more exciting distractions. Begin by going on walks at quieter times and to quieter areas. Don’t walk past other people and dogs really close by and expect your dog to stay with you for that treat yet. Begin walking past with a few metres between you, and slowly decrease the distance away from them.
Also when you know there is a potentially big distraction coming up, help your dog out by stopping and asking them to sit and wait whilst it goes past. It is easier for them to control themselves when still rather than moving. Use more treats in quick succession to help with their focus.