A long leash is a great tool in dog training – provided it is used correctly! In this blog post, you will learn for whom the long leash training is suitable, which long leash is the right one for your dog, and how to use the long leash in practice.
The long leash training is suitable for:
- Training puppy and young dogs
- Dogs that do not know you yet
- fear dogs
- Anti-hunting training
- hunting dog training
- recall training
- Training of different signals at distance
- Dogs, with emotional and/or social support needs
Which long leash is the right one?
You can find long leashes in different lengths between 3 to well over 15 meters. If you want to practice certain aspects of behavior with your dog, such as recall or orientation to you, less is always more. The reason for this is that we are in a training situation. So the further your dog can move away from you, the more difficult it will be for you to lead him over the leash.
The type of leash is also crucial and depends on what you want to train with your dog. Especially popular are the currently leashes made of biothane, which is a water-repellent material, but depending on the provider also very slippery in the hand. So if you have a dog that tends to have impulsive reactions and also likes to jump into the leash, it is better to take a material that is non-slip in the hand. Many long leashes also have a hand loop. This loop may seem practical at first look, that you can put it around your wrist, but in most cases, it carries a high risk of injury. It is not uncommon that either your hand gets caught in the loop when your dog runs off or your dog runs off with the leash and gets caught somewhere with the loop.
Our recommendations for a suitable long leash:
- 5 meters length
- No hand loop
- Part rubberized
How to use the long leash in dog training.
Getting your dog used to the long leash.
Before you even start training your dog must get to know the long leash. The long leash should always be attached to a harness to prevent injury to the neck vertebrae. When you put your dog on the long leash, give him a little more leash at first until your dog reaches the final length. It is best to tie a knot at the end of the leash to give yourself a fixed point. Praise your dog verbally as long as the end of the leash is not yet reached and, if you like, reward your dog’s eye contact with some food. When your dog reaches the end of the leash, say “Slow down” and gently tug on the leash until your dog responds with a step back or eye contact. As soon as your dog loosens the leash, you stop gently tugging and verbally praise your dog. If your dog makes eye contact, you can also reward him with some food, a social game, or something similar.
Gradually, your dog will learn the limits of the leash and, if the leash length remains the same, he will even be able to keep the distance independently without pulling. Stay fair and give your dog the signal “Slow down” ready just before he runs into the leash. Mark for it with a knot in the leash (approx. 20 cm before line end), the distance, where you give your dog the signal.
Use the long leash in recall training.
Especially in recall training, it pays to take your dog on a long leash. For a successful recall, your dog must understand that he must run to you on the recall signal “Here”, no matter what stimuli have previously taken his attention. For this, it is important at the beginning that the word signal “Here” is conditioned at a relatively short distance. Once your dog understands what to do with this signal, you can gradually increase the distance and incorporate distractions into your training. If your dog does not listen to your recall signal, you can remind him by gently tugging on the leash that the command is valid, even if the distraction seems exciting. So for recall, it’s not only your will but also your way of demanding the command consequently that is important to train a reliable command.
Do you need help with training with the long leash or recall training? Then download the Pupy app now. Train with our step-by-step video instructions or chat with our professional dog trainers and find a personalized way for your human-dog team.
We hope you have fun training with your dog!
Your Pupy Team