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Leash Walking Two Dogs

With two dogs it is best to train any command that you want your dogs to know with each dog separate.  Each dog will learn at their own pace and when our attention is focused on one dog instead of two our reaction time for rewarding is much better.  Leash walking is no different.  Commit to walking each dog separately for awhile.  When each dog is great on the leash without the other dog being present, add the second dog into the picture.

Here is the way I train leash walking.  I hold the leash in my right hand and leave about 3 – 4 feet of the leash hanging down so that it is forming a “J.”  I have the dog on my left side.  I also have the treat bag on my left side.  If I am using a clicker, I C/T (click and treat) when my dog is walking nicely on the leash (not pulling).  Smelling during walks is allowed.   The placement of my hand when giving the treat is alignment with the seam of my pants.  Therefore, I am not treating my dog for being in front of me.  I practice this over and over again until my dog gets it! A front hook harness (the Easy Walk)  or a head collar (the Gentle Leader) can be useful as well to speed up the learning process.  When training the other dog I may train him to walk on the right side.

When they are good on the leashes alone then it is time to walk them together.  You can do so with the head collars, flat collars, or front hook harnesses.  I like to walk the dogs so that I have the dogs on opposite sides.  Some people find it nice to have both dogs on the same side.  There is no right or wrong.  It is what works best for you.  If you want both dogs on the same side you can use a double ended dog leash.  It is best to get one with a swivel so that the dogs are less likely to get tangled.

Most of all have fun!

Happy Training!

Johanna Teresi, Professional Trainer and Owner of Four Legged Scholars LLC

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