How to Properly Hold a Dog Leash

Do not allow your dogs to take you for a walk.

Do not allow your dogs to take you for a walk.

Does your dog pull and twist when you walk him? If you let him pull you around, he will just become more difficult to control as he gets older and bigger. Holding your dog's leash properly will give you more control and help prevent painful hand and wrist injuries.

Slide your thumb through the loop handle on the leash and allow the leash to rest against your palm with your thumb facing toward the sky and the leash dangling toward the ground.

Close your hand around the leash and handle. If your dog does not pull on the leash and you do not need tight control, this is a safe and comfortable way to hold his leash.

Loop the leash back and forth over your palm in an accordion style until you reach the desired length, and then close your hand tightly on the leash. This will shorten the leash to give you more control and pull your dog closer to your body.

Check that the leash is exiting your hand near your pinkie finger to ensure maximum control.

Walk with your hands down in a comfortable position below your waist. Holding the leash too high will pull on your dog's collar and cause him discomfort.

Hold your dog's position by placing a foot on the leash to keep it still or by gripping it with both hands as you'd grip a baseball bat. Place your hands against your stomach.

Stop walking, point one hip toward your dog and space your legs shoulder-width apart to stop your dog from pulling. Remain in this position until your dog relaxes.


  • Hold your dog's leash with two hands and keep it short when walking in pedestrian traffic. Do not allow your dog to pull or make contact with other pedestrians.


  • Do not place your entire hand through the handle loop and do not wrap the leash around your wrist. Doing so can lead to serious injury if your dog suddenly pulls hard on the leash.

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  • walking the dog image by robert mobley from