Why Is My Dog Stubborn When Walking

By Coty Perry

The most common reason your dog is stubborn when walking is that he is bored. Walking a stubborn dog can be frustrating for you and your canine.

It is important to remember that dogs want to behave as much as we want them to since they enjoy making their owners happy. If your dog is stubborn on a walk, it is up to you to determine what causes the stubborn behavior. 

Whether your dog needs training, is afraid of other dogs, needs more stimulation, or might have a medical condition, you need to get to the root of the issue. 

Why Is My Dog Stubborn When Walking?

Young dogs have an instinct to stick close to home, which could contribute to your dog’s stubborn behavior. When your dog matures, he will naturally become more independent and less stubborn. However, this stubborn behavior on walks could carry into his adult years. 

He may need additional training if he is still stubborn on walks into adulthood. You will need only to praise movement and ignore his persistent behavior, showing him that you dislike when he is stubborn. You should not pull on the lead when your pup stops in his tracks, as it becomes a battle you probably won’t win. 

You need to relax and walk where you want to go, but when your dog stops, discourage the behavior. 

Usually, they will become less stubborn once they understand that you expect good behavior. Some more reasons that your dog could be stubborn on walks include:

Fearful or Anxiety

If your pup is fearful or anxious, he might be stubborn when walking to avoid something. He could be afraid of certain smells, loud noises (like thunder), and unusual sights. It is also possible that he has experienced a negative encounter on a walk and puts the brakes on because he is anxious. 

He might display signs of anxiety leading up to his stubborn behavior on his walk, like shaking, low ears, panting, crying, yawning, and barking. If you believe your pooch is fearful or anxious on walks, try to determine what or who he is afraid of and reassure him that it is okay. If he does not budge, consider trying a different direction on your walk.

Health Issue

Sometimes when dogs experience health issues, they become stubborn on walks. Your pup might have a comfort or health issue, like a sore back, sore hips, or arthritis, causing him not to want to walk. 

He could also have growing pains, mainly if he is still young, a large or fast-growing breed. If you suspect your dog is suffering from health issues, you should seek medical treatment immediately. Other signs that he is in pain or physical discomfort include limping, lack of appetite, grumpiness, and will not put weight on all their feet.

Final Thoughts

There are many reasons your dog is stubborn when walking. He could just be bored of taking the same route, he could be nervous, or he could be suffering from a health issue. 

As a dog owner, you must find the cause of the issue and act on it. Try to rule out the possibility of stubborn behavior. Once you determine the reason, you can work with your pup to become less stubborn on walks.

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Coty Perry
Coty is a self-proclaimed cat whisperer and animal lover. Growing up his mom ran a dog training business out of his childhood home so you can say it was complete chaos 24/7. Today, when he comes home after a long day of writing about animals, he’s greeted by his two loving cats Marley and Cozmo.