Dog Training & Behavioral Consultations in Greater Sacramento & Southern Oregon

How to Overcome Your Dog's Leash Reactivity?

A dog standing in front of a mountain with trees.

Just like humans, animals do experience various discomforts and feelings. They too sometimes can be misdiagnosed and misunderstood. Though they cannot express what they feel like humans do, they do feel things and require attention. Almost 70% of households like pets and own some. Many safe creatures can be taken in as pets, like cats, rabbits, parrots, and of course, the most favorite of many, dogs. Dogs are very faithful beings and they require the utmost care and love. There are many behavior patterns of dogs that their owners must be familiar with. The following write-up will help know more ways of overcoming your dog's leash reactivity. 

Dogs - A Part of Every Household:

The bond between dogs and humans is considered to be one of the strongest bonds. There are many reasons why people think dogs are the best pets. Their positive attitude is very infectious and they make you laugh. They are domestic animals that are very safe to have. They are wonderful stress busters.

Every dog needs a leash. Just like any living being, even dogs react toward any kind of trigger. The reactivity can have many causes, and some dogs, react toward the tug of leashes. 

Leash reactivity is common dog behavior and it is a must to diagnose if your dog has leash reactivity. Sometimes you would have struggled with the way your dog lunges and barks while taking walks. Overcoming your dog's leash reactivity might be easy once you understand its causes. 

Ways to Know If Your Dog is Leash Reactive and Its Causes:

It's very important to know that reactivity isn't aggression. You can know if your dog is leash reactive in the following ways. When your dog is on a leash,

  • It whines and barks at people, cars, and any kind of animal
  • They lunge and strain when seeing any kind of stimulus
  • It bites and nips or redirects onto the leash
  • Your dog might engage in similar activities inside a fence or gate.

There are many reasons for your dog to be leash reactive. The three main causes include:

Insecurity and Fear:

Poor socialization and scary experiences of the past can cause this. The leashes take away your dog's freedom and this might get them on guard while meeting other dogs.

Strong desire to seek out conflicts and fights:

These are rare, but sometimes, highly confident dogs have an attitude that makes them pick fights easily. 


When dogs have unmet expectations, they might get frustrated. And, they normally want to reach out to people. If they could not, they might react.

Methods to Prevent and Overcome Leash Reactivity:

Is your dog reactive and starts barking aggressively when he sees other dogs and strangers all of a sudden? Then, here are some dog training tips to overcoming a dog's leash reactivity which you can definitely count on.

You can prevent leash reactivity in your dogs before it's too late with ways like, not letting your dog meet other dogs while on leash. Give your dog rewards and make sure they sit next to you while meeting new people. Avoid using corrective collars and retractable leashes. 

You can always stop leash reactivity by working with professionals in your area and seeking their expertise on this. Many places specialize in certain dog behaviors and help your pets overcome them. There are many routines and techniques with patterns that might help them get over their fear and insecurities. 

For example, there are many dog trainers who provide dog training in Sacramento specialize in helping dogs overcome leash reactivity and prevent aggressive behavior through training. You can always practice indoor techniques, to keep them away from their triggers. And then, take the training outdoors. Make sure you reward your dogs constantly with treats and treat them with kindness. Help them overcome the causes and keep them comfortable and safe.

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