Home & Lifestyle


Brandon McMillan

Lesson time 20:42 min

Walks should be fun, not a tug-of-war. Learn heel and teach any dog to walk beside you and match your pace without pulling, racing, or lagging.

Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars

Topics include: Building Blocks for Puppies The Leash Drag · Heel for Medium & Large Dogs · Heel for Small Dogs


[00:00:00.00] [MUSIC PLAYING] [00:00:15.29] DOG TRAINER: The heel command teaches your dog to walk right beside you at your pace. Once your dog learns his command, they won't be pulling you along on your daily walks anymore. This command takes some real time to train, so remember, you're the leader of this walk. Not your dog. [00:00:43.91] Come on. Good girl. Good. OK. What we're about to do is step one, day one of leash walking. If you have a puppy, it is never recommended to simply put a leash on them and start walking them. I promise you, you'll run into big problems. They'll fight, they'll resist, and they will never want to walk on a leash again. [00:01:02.93] Because of Juno's age, she's not going to learn a heel command yet. All we're going to do is teach her the basic building blocks of walking on a leash. And the way we start that is a technique known as leash drags. [00:01:14.48] Leash drags are exactly what it sounds like. You simply attach a leash to a harness let them drag it around. It's very simple. That's all we're doing. Come on. Good girl. Good. [00:01:26.48] During these 15-minute sessions, just have your puppy walk around with the leash on. Always make sure you're observing them, and never leave them unattended when they have a leash on. Every so often, you're going to pick the leash up and drop it right away so your puppy gets used to the light resistance. As you progress, you'll hold the leash for a longer amount of time and add more resistance as you go. [00:01:53.96] As you can see here, Rufus is a lot of dog. He has absolutely no leash manners, and he pulls very hard. OK, before I get into the heel command, there's a few things I want to point out. Number one, notice the cones right here. That's for dogs that actually weave or zigzag. This is very important to teach them to walk straight. [00:02:17.97] Most dogs, when they're learning to heel, they're all over the place. They're weaving left and right, and this right here creates an alleyway. The bushes on one side and the cones on the other creates about a five-foot walking area, and the dog actually learns to walk straight right in that path. You don't have to have any more than about six feet worth of cones to create that thin little alleyway to teach them effectively. [00:02:38.22] Second thing to point out-- and this is very important-- placement of the collar. As you notice right here, the collar is low. I do not want that when you're teaching the heel. The smallest part of a dog's neck is right under the jaw and right behind the ears. This is exactly where I want my collar as I'm teaching the heel. [00:02:55.30] This is where the Martingale comes in, because the Martingale cinches up. The whole point of the Martingale is not to choke. It is to keep the head high. The higher the head is, the more control you have of your dog when you teaching him the heel. [00:03:06.18] That is the most important step in this process. The higher the dog's head is, the less...

About the Instructor

The Emmy-winning host of "Lucky Dog", Brandon McMillan is an expert trainer dedicated to building relationships between humans and animals. In his MasterClass, Brandon shares his simple, effective training system to help you develop trust and control with your dog. From using commands like sit, stay, and down to fixing barking and digging, you’ll learn how to improve your dog’s behavior—and create a lifelong bond.

Featured Masterclass Instructor

Brandon McMillan

Expert animal trainer Brandon McMillan teaches you his simple, effective training system to build trust and control with your dog.

Explore the Class

Starting at $15/month (billed annually) for all classes and sessions

Get Started