5 Easy Ways to Control Your Dog in Public
We all want to take our dogs out and about with us, whether that's to a restaurant or to a public park, but how do we make sure that we're keeping our dogs and other people safe?
1. Start Early
You should start by taking a new puppy to socialisation classes to increase their awareness of how to interact with dogs and other people. Then onto obedience classes where Fido will learn to listen to his owner despite other stimuli. The more you desensitise them when they’re young the easier they are to control when they’re older.
2. Teach Core Commands
Having a perfectly behaved dog is a dream, but let’s be honest it’s not always a reality. As long as you’ve taught them the basics, such as heel, having them out in public will be a lot easier when you’re not being dragged around by them! Another great one is ‘watch me’, this ensures that your dog’s focus is on you even when there are distractions in the background.
3. Use a Secure Collar or Harness
There are so many options for you to choose for your furry friend. Some dogs are fine with a standard collar, however some dogs tend to pull on the lead (hello spaniels!) and are better suited for a harness. Whatever you choose you must ensure that it will remain on your dog if you encounter difficulties- so will not slip over your dog’s head or choke your dog.
Remember to keep your dog on a strong leash, and avoid flex-leads where possible as they’re not easy for passers by to see.
4. Use High Value Treats as a Reward
When in a public place treats are a sure fire way of guaranteeing your dog’s attention. Whether that’s to keep them in heel or to get their focus on you, using a treat such as cocktail sausage or cooked chicken breast will have them as good as gold in no time.
5. Stay Calm
Most of the time having your dog out in public isn’t about the dog, it’s about you and the energy that you’re putting out. If you remain assertive and calm then that will travel down the lead and into your dog.