It’s important for every dog owner to know how to teach their pet to walk on a leash.
In most areas, leash laws require all pets to be curbed when outside a fenced area. A well-behaved pooch strolling down the street with her person is far safer than the animal allowed to run loose.
This article applies specifically to chihuahuas, but the techniques will work just as well for any small-breed dog.
Before you begin leash training, your dog will need to get accustomed to wearing a collar and leash in the first place. For a small dog such as a chihuahua, be sure that you are using lightweight equipment.
For the first few days, attach the leash to the collar and let your puppy get used to the feel of it. Don’t leave it on for longer than five minutes at a time.
After your pet has become acclimated to the leash, it’s time to start the actual leash training:
- Attach the leash as you did before, but don’t put it on the ground. Hold it and begin to walk across the room.
- If the pup follows you, great! If your chihuahua refuses to move, coax her over to you. Use a gentle voice and say, “Come here, baby.”
- Keep encouraging her until she will walk to you. Don’t let go of the leash. She needs to understand that this is the next part of the lesson. If you must, use a small dog treat to coax her.
Keep the leash pulled slightly tight. Try walking your pet on your left side — your dog should always be on your left.
Because the restraint is not loose, your puppy will soon learn that she should stay close to your side.
Practice walking in an area with few distractions. Take a few short learning walks daily. Once your chihuahua has mastered walking on a leash in private, it’s time to take her out into the public.
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Have you tried leash training your chihuahua yet? Tell us about it in the comments below. If you enjoyed this article, you’ll love Pets Adviser’s email newsletter. It’s free to sign up, and you’ll be among the first to get alerts about major pet food recalls. New subscribers also get instant access to our 40-page ebook — which has “secrets every cat and dog lover should know.” Learn more here.