The weather outside IS frightful but don’t let that stop you from training your dog. Here is a post from our archive for all of those wet weather days.
Last week we talked about how to walk your dog outside on a leash without pulling.
This week, we are going to show you how you can have a purposeful walk inside your house.
There is no reason why you cannot have a fabulous purpose-driven walk inside. You and your dog can stay warm, dry and toasty in this great activity.
In this exercise you are going to actually have a very short, but focused walk, from one end of your house down a hallway to another end of the house. The goal of this exercise is that your dog is going to learn how to walk along with you by your side and NOT PULLING AGAINST THE LEASH.
How to teach your dog to walk inside your home
Before you begin, make sure that you have a correctly fitted training tool on.
Begin by having your dog on your left side.
Next, get your leash at walking length which should be approximately 20-24 inches long. Bunch it up all into your left hand, with your dog on your left side. But before you begin walking, get your body prepared!
Head up. Shoulders Back. Eyes straight forward. Hands down low. Get ready to depart, and when you do, step out with your left leg. Remember, this is a brisk, purposeful walk for a short distance. You don’t need to be running, but you do want brisk movement.
Now, you are going to move ahead with PURPOSE, and I mean march ahead toward the end of the hallway. When you get to the end of the hallway you are going to execute a 180 degree turn, and head back the other direction. Precision matters on this turn, which means you need to turn quickly away from the dog, and pivot and head back directly on the same line you had just walked on. NO, big, loopy U-Turns. Channel in your mind a military style, about-face. Here’s another hot tip, when you are executing the turn, DO NOT SLOW DOWN or look at the dog, or raise your hands up. Keep those arms down low by your pockets and keep your pace up in the turn. If you lag here, you send the wrong message to the dog and you can actually teach him to pull against the leash.
The goal is that your dog is learning how to NOT PULL ON THE LEASH and stay next to you as you walk.
After you have completed several successful passes of straight walking with your dog staying with you, be sure to give him some gentle praise and take a little break.
Once you’ve got the straight line down nicely, it’s time to begin adding some turns. You can do right turns around a kitchen island once or twice. You can do left turns around a dining room table once or twice. Again, before departure, get your body prepared. It’s so important I’m saying this part again. Shoulders Back. Eyes straight forward. Hands down low. Get ready to depart, and when you do, step out with your left leg. Remember, this is a brisk, purposeful walk for a short distance. When you execute your turn, if your dog is not paying attention, you may bump into him. If you do have a bump, don’t stop. Just keep going. After a bump or two, he’ll be paying a bit more attention to where you are and where you are headed. When he tunes into you, be sure to give him a gentle and encouraging, “Good Boy!”. Have a nice little break together.
You will want to do two of these kinds of Purpose-driven walks a day, for about 5-8 minutes each session.
You can make it happen, snug as bug in a rug in your very own house!