Things to Look for in a Dog Leash for Pullers
When you’re looking for the best dog leash for pulling, you should take the following factors into account to help you make the best choice:
Strength and Durability
You need the leash you choose to be particularly strong and durable to stand up to pulling, especially if you have a larger, powerful breed. Pulling puts more strain on the leash which, over time, will cause it to wear quicker. Choosing a strong, durable leash will ensure your leash lasts longer and stands up to your dog’s pulling as you work on correcting the behavior.
When your dog pulls, especially if they lunge forward suddenly, it can put pressure on them and be painful for you. The last thing you want is an injury to you or your best pal. If your dog is prone to lunging forward, a leash with shock absorbance may be best.
This feature reduces the impact while you train your dog to stop pulling. It’s important to note that some people find a leash with shock absorbance doesn’t work for them during training, as it gives the dog extra room to move around. Think about what will work best for your needs.
You need the most control possible to help you get that pulling under control. Look for leashes with features that help to give you that control, such as extra handles, the ability to shorten the leash, and slip leads which allow for gentle correction.
Choosing a leash made from high-quality materials will ensure your pup is getting the best, as well as making the leash more likely to last longer and be comfortable for your pooch.
Consider how long you want the leash to be. In general, leashes that are shorter tend to be better for dogs who pull as it helps you to control them more efficiently. However, some people find that giving their dog a bit more freedom works for them.
Take your time to figure out what will work best for you and your dog. If in doubt, a leash that allows you to alter the length might be best for you.
Why Do Dogs Pull On Their Leash?
There are lots of reasons your dog might pull on their leash, but in essence, they all stem from 1 thing: your dog thinks that this is how they can move forward and get where they want to go. This might be due to lack of leash training, meaning your dog hasn’t been shown how to walk properly on their leash and therefore doesn’t know the rules. It’s our job to teach our dogs how to walk properly on their leash.
Sometimes we accidentally ‘reward’ our dogs pulling, for example by allowing them to move forward, meet other dogs, get to where they want to go (for example the park), or by giving them treats at the wrong time. When we do this, we’re essentially teaching our dogs that it’s ok to pull.
Some dogs are more prone to pulling due to their breed or their high energy levels. Thankfully, no matter what the cause of their pulling, the right equipment and training can help you get things back under control. You can reduce pulling and enjoy your walks together again.
Other Useful Equipment
As well as leashes, there are also harnesses and collars which can help you reduce pulling. Headcollars allow you to lead your dog by the nose, giving you more control and helping you to redirect your dog’s attention when needed. Martingale collars tighten gently when your dog pulls forward, enabling quick corrections.
Some harnesses allow you to lead your dog from the front or side, aiding in redirecting your dog’s attention and reducing pulling. No pull harnesses will often tighten gently around your dog’s body when they pull, helping you to correct the behavior. Often people (myself included) find using a collar and a harness at the same time with a double-ended leash helps to give them the control they need.
The right equipment can be very helpful in tackling pulling, but it must be paired with leash training to get the best results. If you’re unsure how to leash train your pup, there are lots of great guides and videos online to help you. Don’t be afraid to ask for guidance from your vet or seek help from a dog trainer, or by attending training classes with your dog.
Fundamentally, leash training involves teaching your dog that when they pull, they don’t move forward. When the leash is loose and they aren’t pulling, they move forward. Here are some simple tips to help you get started:
- Always have treats at hand to reward good behavior as soon as it occurs (treat training pouches can be extremely useful for this)
- Walk slowly and calmly
- If your dog walks with a loose leash, use lots of verbal praise and give them a treat
- If your dog pulls on the leash, stop, and bring them back to your side
- Continue these steps and be consistent in order to get the best results. It takes time and a lot of patience.
Dog Leash for Pullers FAQ
Why is leash pulling bad?
If your dog is pulling on the leash it means you’re not in control of the situation. It can also be painful for you, especially if you have a big dog, and can damage your dog’s neck if they’re constantly putting pressure on that area. Pulling on the leash can also be confusing and frustrating for your dog because they look to you for guidance and rules.
Does pulling on the leash hurt your dog?
Yes, pulling can hurt your dog especially if they’re on a collar or headcollar. Over time, pulling restricts blood flow to the area and can damage your dog’s neck and throat.
While pulling can be very frustrating, with the right equipment and training you can make walks pleasant again. You’ll be enjoying outdoor adventures with your best pal in no time!