German Shepherds are pretty large dogs and so strong that they can drag people down while taking walks. This is not just embarrassing if someone is around, but is also painful. Not only does it hurt you but also your dog, when they pull so hard they can choke and gag. Dogs are always so eager to smell new things and meet new people and dogs but it’s much easier to walk them when you don’t have to keep tugging them back. This article will feature 7 tips to stop German Shepherd leash pulling which will hopefully help get them to walk by your side and not go ahead.
First let’s take a look at some German Shepherd Leash Pulling causes:
- Curiosity: It is your German Shepherd’s nature that they are full of curiosity at each turn. German Shepherds have some of the best smelling senses over all dogs so they have so many exciting smells coming at them all at once. This makes them want to explore and push towards every new thing they smell, hear, or see.
- Motion Sensitivity: Especially since German Shepherds are herding dogs they will want to dart after anything moving. They have strong herding drives and will want to protect and herd anything that gets their attention by movement.
- Anxiety: If you have a more skittish and shy German Shepherd this may be the case. They might be lacking confidence and not know how to handle the new surroundings around them. This can cause them to try pulling forward. Be careful to not let go of the leash as they will probably try to run off and this can put them in danger of the leash getting caught and choking them or if they run into the road they could get hit by a car.
- Aggression: Some German Shepherds can be over protective and try to lunge at any other people or dogs you pass. This can get others injured, so if this is a big problem with your dog you may want to result to obedience training immediately.
- Prior Events: The reason your German Shepherd may be pulling is because of something they did in their past life. It may have included doing this action to pursue something.
Now here are the 7 tips to help prevent German Shepherd Leash Pulling!
1. Chill Out Before You Go Out
As soon as your German Shepherd sees you are grabbing their leash they will start going crazy most likely. They will most likely start running around and doing a happy dance, but you can’t give into it.
Try to wait awhile after you attach the leash. Don’t leave until they have relaxed themselves, this will make it so they don’t take out all their excitement out on the walk.
2. Practice Inside
I know you may think this is useless but it’s a helpful way to fix the problem. The main thing you will try to teach when doing this is for your dog to listen to your commands when on the leash.
You can try to teach your German Shepherd this by walking first through doors and stopping when they go ahead. Always walk before your dog.
3. Look Into Getting a No Pull Harness
A no pull harness is one of the best recommended solutions. It may be the only solution on the list that costs money, but it’s a quick and easy solve. Even though some harnesses may not work on some dogs, it really depends on how dedicated your dog is to push ahead.
This way is also much safer, instead of pulling on the dogs neck, it pulls the dogs weight on the chest. You can check out our review of the best harness and leash for German Shepherd.
4. Stop When It Starts
This is one of the most common ways, yet most time consuming and frustrating.
The way this one works is every single time your dog pulls on the leash you pause and wait till their is slack on the leash. Then you reward them with a treat. Continue doing this till your dog keeps slack on the leash all the time.
Make sure to always stay calm with your dog and never get mad at them. They can’t understand us and they are trying the best they can.
5. Reverse Directions
This one is pretty self explanatory and easy. The way you do this is, every time your German Shepherd starts pulling, turn around and walk the other direction. Do this so that there is always slack on your dogs leash.
6. Wear Them Out
This one can be a great way to fix the problem. Usually towards the end of each walk they slow down, it’s because their more tired by then. Similarly, you can wear them out before you start the walk.
Play with your dog for a while and get them excited so they start running around. This will tire them out so they are less energetic at the beginning of the walk.
7. No Rewards
Sometimes a reward to your German Shepherd is not only a treat but something they are really wanting. Dogs love sniffing around at all the new smells.
The next time you are on a walk and about to reach a mailbox, tree, or something that your German Shepherd is excited to reach, stop them. You need to interrupt the thought so they know they don’t get their reward by pulling. If they walk up to the tree without tugging you can also reward them with a treat.
Watch Videos On How To Fix Leash Pulling
If you search for no pull videos on youtube you can find some good ones from real dog trainers. This may be helpful for certain people who work better with visuals.
Result To Obedience Classes
If no solutions worked you can turn to the professional trainers. You can sign up your German Shepherd for a local obedience training facility or contact a dog trainer to come visit you and your German Shepherd at your home.
Hopefully after trying these tips it fixed your German Shepherd leash pulling problem. Stay consistent and remember to stay patient with your dog. Wish you an easy training process, as German Shepherds are one of the easiest trainable dogs.
Please leave a comment below and let us know what you think!
Do you have any experience with German Shepherd leash pulling and how to stop it? Let us know any successful methods that have worked for you and your dog. We would love to hear about it!