Why Does My Dog Walk On My Right Side? (Answered!)

Dogs have preferences when it comes to their walking positioning.

A lot of dog owners notice this after a while. It’s common for dogs to walk on your right side and make a habit of it. You may wonder, why does my dog walk on my right side?

Dogs walk on your right side because it’s closest to your strongest hand. Most dog owners will hold a leash with their right hand and naturally, the dog will get used to being on your right side when walking.

It’s simply a habit that is picked up over time by the dog. Since most dogs start walking outdoors on a leash at a young age, it becomes easy for them to pick up on these little details.

It will come to them without a second thought and sometimes you won’t notice it either.

This article will take a look at some of the benefits of a dog walking on your right side.

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Reasons A Dog Walks On Your Right SIde

1. Closest To Your Stronger Hand

Close your eyes and imagine walking your dog.

On average, dog owners will hold the dog leash in their right hand. This is their stronger hand and therefore allows them to maintain control over the dog’s movement in all types of conditions.

While you might not think too much of it, the dog is going to notice this as a pattern. They will start to get used to being on your right side at all times.

For the dog, your strongest hand doesn’t mean much. Instead, they are more focused on where they should be positioned when you are walking outdoors as it is also a part of the hierarchy of your “pack.”

Even when you take away the leash, it is common for dogs to walk on the right side. It simply becomes normalized for them and they don’t even think about it.

In rare cases, it is also possible the dog will walk behind you. This is an extension of their desire to remain behind you in the hierarchy and showing respect.

why does my dog walk on my right side

2. Learned Behavior

If you see a dog walking on your right side, it might just be a learned behavior.

This means the dog has picked up little details whenever you have gone outside for a walk. They will begin to notice specific patterns and this includes when you are the happiest as they walk alongside.

Most dog owners will be happier with the dog on the right side.

This is something the dog is going to notice and they will stick to the right side when walking. It will become something they are used to.

Dogs are quick learners and will adapt to how you walk them early on as puppies or young dogs. This includes when you walk them on a leash on the right side of the body.

If you bring a puppy into your life, you will often notice this behavior.

It is because of how you are walking the young dog outdoors. They will get used to the idea of being on your right side and it will just become a part of their behavioral patterns.

why does my dog walk on my right side

3. Keeps Away From The Traffic

This is one of the main reasons dogs walk on the right side.

You will not want the dog to be closest to traffic as they might run onto the road and get hit. This is why most owners will keep the leash in their right hand and make sure the dog is closer to the other side of the sidewalk.

This is simply a protective measure that is used by dog owners.

In most countries, the sidewalk is going to have the road on the left side. This means dogs prefer stay away from moving vehicles and walk to the left of their owner at all times.

Dogs will notice this and realize it is safer to be on the right side.

This is something they are going to get used to and continue to implement even when they are not on a leash around you.

Related Questions

1. What Side Should My Dog Walk On?

It is best for a dog to walk on the right side outdoors. This is closer to the average person’s strongest hand while also keeping the dog away from incoming traffic.

2. Should A Dog Always Walk On One Side?

It’s recommended to train dogs to walk on both sides. They should be comfortable to switch sides if necessary. However, it is ideal to have a dog learn to walk on one side as this allows for more leash control outdoors.

Final Thoughts

Why does my dog walk on my right side?

Dogs will walk on your right side because it’s a learned behavior. They will pick up on this when you continually walk them on the right side. This is due to the average person being right hand dominant and keeping the leash in their right hand while walking a dog. Dogs quickly begin to associate walking with being on your right side.

This is something to keep a note of with your dog.

Here is more on dogs – giving mint candy to a dog, giving waffle cones to a dog, reasons for dog walking behind you, and how to control a strong dog while walking.