How to Stop a Dog From Lunging on a Leash

Do you have a dog that lunges and pulls on the leash? Anybody wanting their dog to stop pulling on the leash knows how frustrating dog walking training can be. You may have tried everything, but still can’t bring your dog to heel or persuade him to ignore other dogs. Sound familiar?

There is no real substitute for enrolling in a proper dog training class, but there are a few simple techniques that can save your sanity in the meantime. Let’s take a look at how to stop a dog from lunging on a leash and what you can do now to stop your dog’s pulling.

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stop dog lunging

How to Stop a Dog from Lunging on a Leash

It is relatively easy to train a dog to come to heel especially if you are in a calm environment with no distractions. The best place to practice walking your dog is in your yard or a quiet park. Start walking with your dog and randomly reward him for walking quietly beside you. Remember to keep your commands firm and consistent (i.e. “heel” should not be followed by “heel, boy”, or “come to heel”). Just use one form of the command). And try not to reward your dog for doing nothing.

Dog Walking Training and the Right Equipment

When considering the type of dog leash you need, bear in mind that a walk is an opportunity for bonding and improving your relationship with your dog. Any device that hurts your dog or provokes fear, damages your relationship. Flat nylon collars, leashes, and harnesses are good. There is no need for choke chains or shock collars.

On the other hand, it is possible to give your dog too much freedom! He must learn that there is a limit to how far away from you he can roam, so steer clear of long and retractable leads until he is ready for them.

For more information on which is right for your dog read these articles:

The Best Dog Leash That Will Make Your Life Easier

The Best Dog Collars for Comfort and Training

How to Choose The Best Dog Harness

How to Walk a Dog That Pulls

When out walking your dog you should take note of who is walking who? If your dog drags you down the street then you aren’t in control! Here are a few tips to try and change your dog’s behavior.

Try rapid changes of direction and your dog will soon realize that he has to pay attention and stick close to your side.

Any time your dog pulls you must stop. He will probably be confused and looking to you to establish why you’ve stopped. Once you have your dog’s attention start moving again in a new direction.

This applies just as well to confrontations with pedestrians, dogs or other domestic animals. Stop, plant your feet, and hold your dog firmly until he stops pulling. Resume walking (in a different direction if possible), and bring your dog to a stop as soon as he pulls again.

This will be frustrating at first, but surely it is better to struggle with it for a week or two than to put up with an unruly dog for years.

If you have to tug on his collar do not do so violently. The idea is just to get his attention. Once you have it, change direction. There is no need for yelling or punishment when your dog is doing it wrong.

Stop Fido from Lunging!

Lunging and pulling on the leash are two signs of bad dog behavior. This can result in inconvenient walks and unsuccessful exercise routines, so make sure your fur baby unlearns these practices.

Go for flat nylon collars, leashes, and harnesses when training your dog. Then, practice walking your dog is in your yard or a quiet park. Keep our recommended techniques in mind when training them!

If you need more info on how to get your dog walking by your side, check out these articles:

How to Stop Your Dog From Pulling

Is Your Dog Pulling on the Leash? Here’s How to Stop It

Easy Dog Walking Tips That Really Work