From personal experience owning and rescuing Bull dogs and Bully breeds I have had a lot of issues when walking my dogs and keeping them from pulling me down the block! Almost every large dog likes to pull their owners to get where they want to go instead of going the direction their owners want them to go. So many people have come to me asking me for a solution for their pulling dog. Unfortunately, the answer does not lie within the dog it lies within the owner and the training that is provided by the owner. It also lies within the attitude that is presented when training your dog.
Training should be started immediately after your dog is around 2 months old and able to walk with you on a leash. Unfortunately, many dog owners have gotten their dogs when they were older and it is a little harder to train a dog when it is over 12 months of age. Dogs tend to take more to your emotions and to your commands when they have been raised to do so. I have never had problems training my dogs that I have raised from puppies but I have had a lot of issues when I attempt to try and train an older, previously owned, full-grown dog.
In order to train a puppy or full-grown dog not to pull on the leash the first key is handling your emotions in order to encourage the dog /puppy to be calm and collected when you want your dog/puppy to be calm and collected and to be excited and upbeat when you want your dog/puppy to be excited and upbeat. Emotions make a world of difference when training because dogs pick up on your emotions very easily. Dogs were bred to understand human emotion and to react accordingly. If you are walking a dog and it is pulling you your first instinct is to pull the dog back and snap at the dog because you are irritated with being pulled, but this is not the right technique. The correct way to handle this situation is to demonstrate control and calmness by shortening your dogs leash and insisting that your dog walk next to you. If your dog pulls shorten the leash some more until the dog relaxes and walks next you. When your dog finally calms and is next to you, encourage your dog and tell him/her “good girl/boy… heel” and repeat the process every time the dog pulls. Eventually the process will become second nature and the dog will learn to walk next to you, like you desire.
Another good tip is to look to your leash and collar for the problem’s solution. A lot of times certain leashes and collars can make a dog not cooperate the way you want them to. Many times I have actually had to go to the pet store and try leashes and collars on a dog, walk them around the store, and see which leash and collar combination controlled the dog the best. Many times a choke collar was needed in order to control a dog long enough to train him/her. The best combination I noticed is the choke collar and extractable leash combination. The extractable leash gives the dog the freedom to explore and the ability for the owner to pull their dog in when needed and the choke collar combined takes away the dog’s pulling ability even while he is on the longer leash position.
While there are many training techniques, these are the ones that have worked for me, and I rescue and train bulldogs. Unfortunately, they are on of the strongest breeds and are known for tugging you across the yard in seconds flat. You have to know when to tell these dogs that you are the boss and learn how to control them, the same with every dog.