Teaching how to teach your dog to heel is very important for a number of reasons. Heel problems can result in sore ankles, corns and painful feet, among other things. A dog that is not properly taught how to behave around other people will not understand why they shouldn’t jump on people or objects. In addition, if you are a runner then heel problems can cause you to slow down and give up your running altogether. Here, I will share with you how to teach your dog to heel without sending him to the vet or leaving him in pain!
The first thing you should try when you decide to start training your dog on how to heal is to use positive reinforcement. Positive reinforcement means rewarding your dog for following your commands. The most popular method of reinforcement that is used in dog training is to praise and treats. For instance, if you are teaching your dog how to heal each time he walks past you then you should give him a treat when he complies. Your dog will learn that if he gets a treat for staying behind then he will get more attention from you.
Another way to train your dog on heel training is to walk past a couple of distractions on your way to your destination. If you are going to do this then it is important that you add distractions in the locations you are going to walk. For example, you could place an obstacle such as a ladder or some stairs right outside the door that leads to your yard. This way your dog will learn to heel past these items.
You can also distract your dog by throwing a treat out to him and then walking by him while throwing the lure in front of him. He will soon start to focus his attention on the lure that he should be paying attention to because it is right in front of him. After a few trials of using the distraction technique you will have him focusing all his attention on the lure and not on the people walking by.
The best way to train your dog on heeling behavior is to use positive reinforcement. This is how all good trainers have taught their dogs for years. If you use positive conditioning in your heeling training you will be able to take your dog through many difficult situations with success. In fact, many people who are not trained in this way have dogs that can heal even when there is no one around.
You have to remember that a dog is not a human being that can heal simply because he wants to please his owner. Heeling is a complex skill and requires repetition and patience on your part. Once you get the hang of heeling with your dog, you will find that you need to exercise this patience constantly as it is an important part of teaching your dog.
The most important thing you can do in heel walking is to never pull your dog on a leash. If you do pull on the leash, you will find that if you keep walking your dog he will begin to heal and will soon develop a habit of pulling on the leash. One of the reasons that dogs pull on the leash is that they are being pulled behind you which forces them to walk against their own momentum. Teaching your dog to heel on command is a complex skill but it is one that you will master over time as long as you treat your dog with respect.
I have spent years reading books and watching videos of dog trainers in action. I finally realized that the most effective methods were those that showed dog trainers demonstrating the proper methods without using force. I recommend looking for information on dog training courses from any of the big book stores like Barnes & Noble or Borders. Another great source of information is your local library. There you will find books on all aspects of dog training from the basics right up to more advanced topics.