This one simple trick will improve your dog’s attention outside, according to an expert

Dog looking at owner
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The new year has arrived which means only one thing: it’s time to set some goals. If you’ve been meaning to brush up on your dog training, now is the perfect time to get started and we’re here to help you along the way. 

Whether it’s finding out how to stop a dog from barking in their crate, visiting the best travel destinations for dogs, or improving your dog’s responsiveness, we have everything you need to get started.

If your goal is the latter, the experts at JW Dog Training & Behavior Consulting have shared a clever trick that you can try on your next walk. It promises to build your dog’s attention outside and help you to feel more confident in their responsiveness. Here’s what you need to know: 

First things first: repetition is key. JW Dog Training explains that while “getting your dog’s attention outside might feel like an impossible task, starting small and breaking the behavior down can have a huge impact”. 

The next time you’re out with your dog, feed them one of the best dog treats and walk a short distance away from them while they eat. When they follow you without a cue, say “Yes!” and reward them with another treat. 

You can also reward them when they walk next to you, look at you, come up to you, or orient to you. This will teach them that it’s worth paying attention and by practicing this exercise frequently, your dog will start to create a habit of it. 

The results? A responsive dog who wants to listen, and an owner who feels confident when it comes to walk time. 

Want to make this year more exciting? Here are 12 clever ways to have more fun with your dog on walks. For more training tips, check out these 32 common dog behavior problems and solutions.


If you plan on giving this trick a go, remember to pack some tasty treats in your bag. Merrick’s Power Bites are a great budget-friendly option that contains real beef, fruits, and vegetables. And if your dog has an allergy or sensitive digestive system, you’ll be pleased to hear that these are free from grains, gluten, corn, wheat, and soy. 

Megan Milstead
Staff Writer

Megan is Staff Writer on PetsRadar and covers news, features, buying guides, and reviews. When she’s not talking about her cats, Nala and Chilli (a rare occasion), you’ll find her watching funny pet videos on Instagram and sending hundreds of them to her friends. She’s particularly interested in pet wellness and is fascinated by cat behavior. Megan has been animal-obsessed for as long as she can remember, having grown up with pets since the age of three and competed in horse riding competitions for seven years. She has had a variety of animals, including horses, dogs, guinea pigs, hamsters, and fish, which taught her first-hand everything she knows about pet care.

Megan studied Journalism at the University of Westminster, where she specialized in lifestyle journalism and was Editor of the online student publication, Smoke Radio. She has experience working across digital and print media and previously worked for titles such as Harrods, My Local News, and Licklist. As a committed pet mom of two, she enjoys going the extra mile for her cats and is passionate about helping readers find the answers they need.