My dog is great (not perfect) walking on a long leash, but absolutely terrible at walking by my side on a short leash. Is training your dog to walk by your side really necessary?

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sourced from: https://www.reddit.com/r/Dogtraining/comments/ett7uy/my_dog_is_great_not_perfect_walking_on_a_long/

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Sorry for the lengthy post! My dog Capone is a pitbull, around 3 years old (we rescued him from an abandoned apartment, so we have no clue who his previous owner is, the other apartment residents gave us an approximation of his age).

My dilemma: I love to go hiking with my dog, and I prefer to use a long leash on a waistband for safety reasons, since it's rugged terrain. Capone is awesome on that leash, he listens really well (at least most of the time, still working on some improvements) and genuinely enjoys it. He doesn't pull the leash but does get to walk in front of me for the most part, unless I tell him to stay behind me.

However when I bring him for walks around my house, I like to walk him on a short leash. I've always been told it's important to teach a dog to walk on a short leash by your side. When we walk around home, he is almost constantly pulling me. He will do a solid 2 minutes walking by my side, but then it seems like he forgets that he's supposed to stay by my side and ends up trying to walk in front of me. I don't know if having two different alternatives (long leash and short leash) is confusing him or if he just prefers to walk in front of me.

Below is a link of him walking on the long leash (unfortunately I don't have one on the short leash). You can tell he knows the commands and actively listens, but it's as if it all goes out the window on the short leash. If he doesn't have any issues on a long leash, do I really need to do short leash training? Is it an issue if he walks ahead of me? Looking for some insight or suggestions. Thanks so much in advance!

I'm on mobile and I have no clue if I'm posting the link right!

http://imgur.com/gallery/7GVQcyc

submitted by /u/canadian_blondie
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