It would be great to stop this bad habit but you're worried about jerking on the leash and hurting his back. Mind you, pulling so hard on the leash such that his front paws leave the ground isn't good for his back either.
Part of the problem is that he's so keen to get to the park, he becomes deaf to calls of "heel" and now it's you that's nearly at the end of your tether.
Unfortunately, what sounds like a simple task is deceptively difficult given that Dachshunds love to get ahead, which then involves them pulling badly. Not only is this bad manners, but it's bad for the Dachshund's long low back, as it puts it under strain.
Start training in a quiet place with few distractions, and as he gets the hang of the task, move outdoors. Practice plenty and in different locations, so that he understands he's expected to walk nicely on the leash no matter where he is.
Because of the Dachshund's delicate back, it's better to train him using a harness rather than a collar. The harness spreads the force over his chest, rather than concentrating it on his neck, should he pull.
Calla is a dachshund mix and does not understand how to go slow. She's nervous and on high alert the whole time we are walking. I have not found a treat that interests her while she is like this. She also gets so excited when she sees another dog that she is almost uncontrollable and yipes at a very high pitch. She's very good with other dogs and has endless energy. She's starting to become more comfortable outside but she's still very difficult to control on a leash, my hands hurt from holding the leash after every walk! What suggestions do you have to leash train her? BTW, we adopted her from the humane society at 4 months old and have an older terrier mix who is a good leash walker.
Hello Laura, Check out the "Turns" method from the article that I have linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel It is very important that she actually walks a bit behind you, with her head not past your leg. This should also impact her reactivity toward other dogs. The heel position puts her into following mode, which can help her relax and be more respectful toward you. When you practice the "Turns" method work the most on turning directly in front of her at a ninety-degree angle whenever her head starts to move past your leg. This can be tricky at first but should get easier as she starts to understand. You have to turn in front of her as soon as her head starts to move past and not when her shoulders or more of her body are past that part, or it will probably be hard to get in front of her without tramping her. Cutting in front of her helps her learn to pay attention, follow and to prefer being a bit behind you - in case you turn suddenly, but it also helps teach respect because of your body language during the turns - which is an important first step with the rudeness toward other dogs. Also, make sure you use a normal six foot leash and not a retractable leash. I suggest a front clip harness or martingale collar - avoid using back-clip harnesses because they can actually encourage pulling. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
Was this experience helpful?