Some time’s we are out and about with our dog and we see another dog with a perfect heel, not tugging on the leash. Don’t we all want to be able to walk with our dog without being dragged across the street at the first sign of a distraction?
The first thing to work on with your puppy is engagement to its owner.
Engagement just means you are the source of praise and the puppy will want to come back to you even after a reward has been given.
Another great way to teach a puppy a heel is luring them with food while you’re training at home. Since puppies pick up everything so fast, working them just as little as 15 minutes throughout the day will help them understand the concept. To lure the puppy into a heel, start them in a basic position side by side of your left leg, then take a couple steps forward, making sure your puppy does not pass your leg and go in front, then reward and praise.
Teaching your puppy, a heel is very important not just for eliminating tugging on a leash, but you want to teach them to stay by your side even under distractions. Although distractions are hard for puppies, teaching engagement will help decrease the “want” to go somewhere else.
Teaching your puppy how to heel and stay next to you can help you in so many ways. Imagine you can walk down Miracle Mile with your 6-month-old puppy not tugging to meet people or other dogs that may walk by.
Having a well-behaved pup is all everyone wants, but we forget the time and dedication puppies need. So, remember when getting a new furry family member, they take time, patience, and training to have the puppy you want!