Getting your pup to stay behaved while walking outside may feel like one of the more challenging aspects of being a pet owner. He may listen well while you're inside the house, but the moment you step outside, all of that obedience goes out the window. It's like as soon as he smells the fresh air, hears dogs barking in the distance, and sees the grass and trees waiting to be sniffed, that you don't exist anymore or something.
If you keep your dog on one side of you when you go on walks, it should prevent him from zig-zagging from side to side to smell trees and different patches of grass while on your walks. The key to this step is staying consistent.
Your dog isn't going to know to stay on the right side of you if you only make him walk on that side every few times that you take him on a walk. If you're concerned about which side to walk your dog on, it doesn't matter too terribly much - as long as you stay consistent! Do whatever feels comfortable for you. If you're right-handed, try keeping your pup to the left of you, and keep the leash in your right hand.
Like we stated above, there is a lot for a dog to get distracted with while walking around outside. All the new sights and smells, and potentially people and other animals - it's a lot to take in. If you make sure your dog's attention stays on you during the walks, it makes it much easier to control him, no matter what the two of you encounter.
If you're walking with your dog and you notice her attention is concentrated on something other than you, it is imperative that you get that focus back. You can do this through a variety of methods. One way of redirecting her attention is just to change the direction that you're walking in - out of sight, out of mind. Another method would be to make your dog sit and wait until she looks at you. Once she does this, you can reward her with a treat.
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