View Full Version : Runs away when I try to harness him!

27th April 2009, 11:19 PM
Quincy is 4 months old, and is doing great with his potty training and commands. My main problem with him is this: most of the time, he "asks" me to take him outside by staring at me and then barking one time. As soon as I grab the harness to put on him, he runs away (not like he's scared, but like he wants to play). I've tried luring him with treats, but that doesn't work either. I usually say "oh well," and put the harness down and ignore him. He then proceeds to start the whole thing over again. This goes on and on, sometimes for 10 minutes, until I finally am able to grab him and harness him. Any suggestions?

27th April 2009, 11:38 PM
He's certainly training you well to come play games... :lol: I'd approach this in a couple of ways. One is to train him to come and then allow you to put on his harness and link this to a command (maybe the word harness?) -- doing this entirely separately from needing to get him out to potty. To train this, if treats don't tempt him as a reward, what else does he absolutely love? Some dogs, especially puppies, are far more motivated by having a favourite toy thrown for them. Also: if you are going to work on training then don;t give him his meals in the morning -- instead let the rewards while training be his breakfast.

Second, as you need to actually get hold of him to go outside -- try running away from him while calling in a high excited voice -- he will likely follow you and come to you. Or again is there a toy that he wants to come grab... you could lure him with that.

I'd keep the harness in a pocket or otherwise hidden as undoubtedly the harness is now a visual signal for the chase and keep away game.

29th April 2009, 10:49 PM
I had a similar problem with mine. She runs away when I walk towards her or when someone is trying to catch her when they're angry. She has a nasty habit of walking out of the door when my roommate holds it open for long periods of time (I know it's my roommates fault more than hers but I still had to make my life easier by training her)

What I did was give her her absolute favorite treat for coming to me. I'd say "Puppy." (her name) then I'd pause a second and then say "Come here" just so she knows exactly what I want. And she runs towards me like it's the end of the world. Then I don't give her the treat until I am able to grab on to her collar. Then I give her the treat and say good girl. I also am taking her around to lots of various (gated) parks so I can practice with her without panicking.

She's doing LOTS better. Now she just kind of stays close by and looks back at me to make sure she's not going too far which lets me know she is at least aware of her distance away from me.

30th April 2009, 12:39 AM
Thanks for the advice. I wish I could find something that would lure him to me, but even his favorite toys don't work. He loves his treats when we're doing command training, but as soon as he knows that it's time to go outside, he runs away! I tried Karlin's idea of calling him and running excitedly - that only worked twice, now he's onto that trick. He's a very smart little booger!

I now hold his harness in my hand while doing command training, which is making him very suspicious. Once in a while, I say "harness," and slip the harness over his head, and then praise him like crazy and give him a treat. I'm hoping this will help in time!

I've got my work cut out for me! Thanks again!

30th April 2009, 02:54 AM
What treats do you try?

My dog is a picky one too. If it's a dog-food treat she could careless but she has two guilty pleasures that she'll turn back flips for: pepperonis and pumpkin spice muffins.

I usually give her turkey pepperonis because I don't trust original ones but she LOVES them. And I only give them to her when she comes to me so they're even more special. If you're not opposed to giving your dog "human food" I suggest you try a bunch of foods and see which one your pup goes crazy to get and then try outside again.

I totally feel your pain because I was freaking out until I discovered my baby's absolute love for pepperonis.

1st May 2009, 12:32 AM
Ilsa has always been like that, now I think it's sweet. I chase her around a bit and catch her and she covers me in licks, so I have to redo my makeup. What does work if we are running late - I pretend I am leaving without her. Put on my coat, walk to the door and open it, she is quickly behind me with her big eyes waiting for her harness.

Jen and Ilsa

21st May 2009, 01:10 AM
Ollie does the same thing when I go to attach the leash to his harness. He backs up, butt in the air barking at me. As I get closer he does the mad dash around the place.

So, what I started doing is when he does his barking/ play thing, I simply stand back up straight, drop both hands to my side, look away and ignore him. After a few seconds, he comes over and lets me clip it on.

heather r
21st May 2009, 08:54 PM
I've found that when I want to get Abigail either for a leash or anything else; I do better by walking away from her. Almost every time she will follow me and get close enough for me to get her. When she's being extra good, she will sit for me.

Heather R

22nd May 2009, 10:55 AM
Bobby used to do this, I think because he didn't like the 'click sound' :eek: of the harness. I now put a treat on my thigh so that he can see it and then as soon as the harness is on he gets the treat! He's alot better! I also make the click as muffled as possible by putting my fingers over the join although you do have to watch that you don't catch your fingers!
I've also found that crouching down turned away from him, is more likely to get him to come close to me than leaning over/towards him. Making it as relaxed and happy as you can! No getting annoyed!
Good luck!