7 Tips to Stop Your Dog from Biting Its Leash
At most, only 25% of dogs receive regular training. That adds up to millions of dogs with no guidance on good behavior.
So, you may be one proud pup owner, but if you find yourself with a dog biting leash problem, then you may be looking for help.
When your adorable canine companion is chewing through leash after leash, the cost and frustrations add up and it can turn into a nearly irreversible behavior.
Today, we're going to show you seven important tips to stop your dog from destroying leashes on walks.
Why It's Important to Stop Your Dog Biting Leash Problem
When a dog chews a leash, you might be willing to let it slide. After all, it may just be a disposable pet accessory in your mind in the first place.
"No big deal!" you say to yourself. "I'll just buy another one."
But this kind of behavior can:
- Cost you a lot in the long run
- Create a frustrating relationship between you and your dog
- Lead to other negative behavior
Ultimately, whether you're worried about the integrity of your dog leashes or not, leash biting isn't a behavior you want to persist.
It can transform into your dog biting and chewing on other items in your home or car. Not to mention, dog bites, in general, are something to discourage so that your pet won't bite a stranger.
Training your dog is important to set boundaries, so they understand what they can and cannot do. It keeps them safe, even if it's just to stop biting their leash.
1. Don't Tug Back
There may be a number of reasons why your dog is biting its leash. But one important thing not to do is tug back.
It's very possible that your dog is playing. Think about all the toys you have for your pup. Whether it's a fuzzy animal or just a piece of string, your dog is encouraged to bite, tear, and tug all day.
Unless you've trained them otherwise, your dog may view a walking leash as the same thing. So it's crucial not to tug back if that's your first instinct.
Your dog may mistakenly think that you're simply playing with them and that you're "in on the game."
2. Opt For High-Quality Leashes
Just like when you're choosing a new dog collar, consider getting a nicer leash than normal.
Whether it's just made of a better material or even customized for your dog specifically, it will be an item you appreciate more.
And if you value the leash more than others, then you, as the owner, will be more motivated to stop the leash biting.
3. Reward the Behavior You Want
If you're wondering how to stop your dog from biting its leash, remember to reward the behavior you want. Don't punish the bad behavior.
This is similar for almost all other types of puppy training.
Your dog will react better to positive reinforcement.
So, when you're walking and your dog starts to chew its leash, do the following:
- Stop walking.
- Use a treat to divert her attention away from the leash.
- Don't give her a treat right away.
- Make her do a trick, such as sit, stay, or look.
- Give her the treat to reward that behavior instead.
Repeat these steps as often as needed.
By following these general steps consistently, you are training your dog that they'll be rewarded for the behavior you want.
You don't give her a treat right away when she stops chewing and tugging on the leash, because then she'll assume the reward was for the biting itself.
Instead, your dog knows she's rewarded for sitting, staying, laying, or whatever other activities you've trained her to do.
4. Start Behavior Correction Early
When you're leash training a puppy that bites the leash, it's always good to start that training early.
Sometimes, that's easier said than done, though. Maybe the problem has already started and you've only just realized that behavior correction is needed.
Still, as with any animal training, the best course of action is to start training and rewarding good behavior immediately rather than working out bad behavior later.
5. Have an Alternative Tug and Biting Toy
Sometimes, your dog may be biting the leash because they're not being stimulated enough.
Make sure you have tugging and biting toys at home that provide enough stimulation and play for your dog before a walk.
Some of these toys even have treats embedded in them, which makes your pup work extra hard to earn it. This can be a good tactic partially because it may make a simple leash boring to your dog.
6. Help Ease Your Dog
Often times, leash biting can be out of frustration. Maybe your puppy is stressed or you've kept them from doing something they want to do, such as greet another dog on the street or sniff some foliage.
If your dog is biting out of frustration then do what you can to ease their stress, such as:
- Controlling how often they see other dogs based on your walk route
- Being consistent on when and how often they're allowed to do what they want on a walk
- Reward good behavior, such as not barking at other dogs on the street
As before, rewarding the good behavior is key.
7. Engage Your Dog Often
Rather than being frustrated at what your dog can't do, it's possible that they're suddenly overly stimulated by what they can do.
If you come home from a long day at work and immediately set out for a walk, your dog may be too excited. The overstimulation of smells, sounds, and touch may get them too rowdy.
In this case, it's important to engage your dog more often than just when going on a walk. Play with them beforehand, play with them after, play with them before going to bed.
If your dog gets enough attention throughout the day other than just going on walks, then they may be calmer when being lead by a leash.
Choose the Right Dog Leash For Your Pup
Walks can be one of the more rewarding aspects of being a dog owner. It's a time to bond, engage, and, sometimes, reward your pet.
But if you have a serious dog biting leash problem, then you need to know how to curb that bad behavior.
Be sure to stop it early and reward the behavior you desire.
Now that you know how to stop leash biting, feel free to browse some of our 6ft leather dog leashes