Train Shih Tzu Walk Leash: Mastering Leash Training for Your Shih Tzu

Training a Shih Tzu to walk on a leash is an essential part of their upbringing that fosters a healthy lifestyle and strengthens the bond between pet and owner. Known for their adorable appearance and friendly disposition, Shih Tzus can sometimes be stubborn, making leash training a task that requires patience and consistency. This article will guide you through the process of leash training your Shih Tzu, turning each walk into an enjoyable experience for both of you.

The Importance of Leash Training

Leash training is crucial for the safety and well-being of your Shih Tzu. It not only prevents them from running into dangerous situations but also ensures that you have control over their movements in public spaces. Moreover, it introduces discipline and structure into their lives, helping them understand their boundaries.

Choosing the Right Leash and Collar

Before you begin the training process, selecting the appropriate leash and collar for your Shih Tzu is vital. You’ll want to choose a lightweight, comfortable collar that doesn’t strain their delicate necks and a leash that provides enough length for exploration but keeps them close by your side.

Types of Collars and Leashes

There are various types of collars and leashes available, including flat collars, harnesses, retractable leashes, and standard leashes. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, depending on your Shih Tzu’s size, temperament, and walking habits.

Fitting the Collar

Ensuring the collar fits correctly is critical to prevent escape and ensure comfort. You should be able to fit two fingers between your dog’s neck and the collar to ensure it’s not too tight or too loose.

Introducing the Leash and Collar

Introducing your Shih Tzu to their new collar and leash should be a gradual, positive experience. Start by letting them wear the collar around the house without the leash attached, followed by short leash sessions indoors.

Creating a Positive Association

Use treats and praise to create positive associations with the collar and leash. Reward your Shih Tzu for calmly wearing the collar and for walking beside you with a loose leash.

Handling Initial Resistance

It’s not uncommon for Shih Tzus to resist wearing a collar or walking on a leash initially. Remain patient and consistent, offering encouragement and rewards for cooperative behavior.

Practicing Indoors

Practicing walking on a leash indoors in a familiar environment can help your Shih Tzu feel more comfortable before venturing outside. Use this time to teach basic commands like “come” and “stay” that can aid in leash training.

Transitioning Outdoors

Once your Shih Tzu is comfortable walking on a leash indoors, it’s time to introduce them to the outdoors. Start in a quiet, enclosed area to minimize distractions and gradually move to more challenging environments.

Mastering the Walk

Mastering leash walking involves teaching your Shih Tzu to walk beside you without pulling, tugging, or stopping frequently. Consistency and positive reinforcement are key to achieving a pleasant walking routine.

Dealing with Distractions and Challenges

Distractions such as other animals, people, and vehicles can make leash walking challenging. Train your Shih Tzu to focus on you and follow your commands, despite distractions.

Advanced Leash Training Techniques

As your Shih Tzu becomes more comfortable with leash walking, you can introduce advanced techniques such as heel, turn, and stop commands to enhance their obedience and walking skills.

Maintaining Patience and Consistency

Patience and consistency are the most important aspects of leash training. Understand that progress may be slow and that each Shih Tzu learns at their own pace. Celebrate small victories and continue practicing regularly.

Looking to train your Shih Tzu to walk on a leash? Check out our guides on teaching your Shih Tzu to walk on a loose leash, Shih Tzu leash training guides, and preventing Shih Tzu leash pulling for valuable tips and techniques. Learn about the importance of leash training for Shih Tzus and explore the various uses of leashes for Shih Tzus to enhance your walking experience with your furry friend!


Leash training your Shih Tzu is a rewarding process that enhances your bond and ensures their safety during walks. By choosing the right equipment, introducing the leash and collar positively, and using consistent training techniques, you can teach your Shih Tzu to enjoy walks beside you. Remember, patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement are key to a successful leash training experience.

Matthew Farthing

Matthew Farthing

Сontributing author at DogCareHacks, Certified Dog Behavior Consultant.

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