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Thread: Harness/leash training?

  1. #1
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    Default Harness/leash training?

    UGH! Toby really hates his harness. Its an extra small, still a little big but does stay on him. Its pretty much a soft material except at the stitching. When I put it on, he tries to get to it to chew it then he scratches at it and then lays down to pout. After awhile he will get up and move around and play but still scratches at it. Its an easy clip on harness. It clips at the top area.
    Then when I try to train him on the leash, he hates that even more! I've heard to allow them to drag the leash around for awhile. Well he lays down and chews on it instead of walking. They say to leave the leash loose as you try to walk with him and all he does is try to grab at it and chew it or walks himself. I've tried this several times and I can't get him to actually walk. We have done the treat thing when someone is holding the leash and someone else is holding the treat and calls him. He will walk to get the treat but then lays down again.
    I've left the harness on for a whole day but have to take it off when he goes into his crate. I also bought 2 collars and he hates those too.
    Desperate for advice.
    Becky

  2. #2
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    I've had the same experience trying to train puppies to learn to walk on a leash. So imagine my surprise when Oliver took to it immediately! Then I realized why.

    He models his behavior on his older brother Clancy! I have a friend who actually borrowed an older dog to teach her puppy to leash walk. A lot of them are very "monkey see, monkey do" when it comes to learning this stuff.

    If you can't borrow an older dog, maybe enroll Toby in a puppy kindergarden class?
    ~Denise and Clancy, Dillon (gone to The Bridge), and baby Oliver

  3. #3
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    Sadly we only know of 1 person with a dog and Toby will only be getting his 2nd shots today. Its really hard to have outdoor fun with Toby when he cannot be around other dogs yet LOL So we stick with the same old same old backyard LOL
    Becky




    Quote Originally Posted by StillPooh View Post
    I've had the same experience trying to train puppies to learn to walk on a leash. So imagine my surprise when Oliver took to it immediately! Then I realized why.

    He models his behavior on his older brother Clancy! I have a friend who actually borrowed an older dog to teach her puppy to leash walk. A lot of them are very "monkey see, monkey do" when it comes to learning this stuff.

    If you can't borrow an older dog, maybe enroll Toby in a puppy kindergarden class?

  4. #4
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    Fishing for Bear! So desperate times call for desperate measures!



    My husband gave up on it though after a few minute because as soon as he caught it he sat down and chewed on bear!
    Becky

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    Try using that same stick and put some Easy Cheese (the nasty canned cheese!) or some peanut butter on the end, hold it in front of the puppy, and let him have a taste every so ofetn as he walks. Praise like crazy and make a party of it when he walks properly. A friend of mine trains her pbaby puppies for the show ring this way and it works!
    Holly, Oliver, Rosalita, and Scarlett

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    Thank you for the idea. I will give it a try!
    Becky



    Quote Originally Posted by Holly View Post
    Try using that same stick and put some Easy Cheese (the nasty canned cheese!) or some peanut butter on the end, hold it in front of the puppy, and let him have a taste every so ofetn as he walks. Praise like crazy and make a party of it when he walks properly. A friend of mine trains her pbaby puppies for the show ring this way and it works!

  7. #7
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    Awh those pics are so cute! Made me smile! Hang in there. Coco hated wearing her collar until she was about 6 months old I swear! She would never give up on trying to chew at it or scratch it away.

  8. #8
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    If Toby hasn't finished his shots yet, there's no real hurry to lead train him. I would leave the harness for the moment, get him a light collar, make sure it's tight enough that he can't catch his paw in it or catch it on anything, and leave it on the whole time. If he wants to scratch and sulk, let him, but at the same time distract him with toys, games, treats, trips into the yard - fun things to take his mind off that thing round his neck. Eventually he will find focusing on the collar boring. When he's used to the collar (don't hurry - let him take as long as it takes), add a light lead and let him walk around with it on the floor, so that it catches on furniture and gives him little tugs. If he sits and chews it, distract him or give him something else to chew. When he's OK with that, quietly pick up the lead and let Toby take you where he wants to go. Then gradually start giving little tugs to get him to go with you to find or do something fun, encouraging him with an excited voice. You want him to associate the lead with nice things, not battles. Then when he's more used to the collar and lead, gently reintroduce the harness. This sounds a long process but probably won't be if you take Toby's mind off the collar and lead as an issue and focus it on the collar and lead mean fun. But don't be in too much of a hurry, there's no law that says a puppy has to be lead trained by such and such an age, and if you want to start socialising him, it's a good idea to carry a small puppy around for a bit anyway, even if he can walk on the lead, because the big wide world can be a bit scary at first.

    Of course, you may end up with a dog who screams with excitement every time he sees a lead...

    Kate, Oliver and Aled

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kate H View Post
    You want him to associate the lead with nice things, not battles.
    That here is the key! Skippy is extremely wary of any new+foreign objects. Especially for anything put -on- him, he will tug/mouth at it.

    So what we did when we first introduced him to his collar/lead/harness was to give him some treats each time we brought them out, so as Kate said, he would associate them with something good. Also, for the first few days we would just put the collar/lead/harness on him and let him figure them out by himself without actually using them yet.

    Now, every time he sees or hears us holding the collar/lead/harness, he knows it's time for him to "get out of the house for a walk" and he goes into a tizzy, full of anticipation.

  10. #10
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    Thank you everyone. I am willing to try all of your suggestions and see which one works.
    Becky

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