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Please help - puppy refusing to walk on lead

Discussion in 'Dog Chat' started by fmhickey, Feb 2, 2012.


  1. fmhickey

    fmhickey PetForums Junior

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    Hi All,

    I need some advise form more experienced Dog owners. My gorgeous GR Riley was allowed out for walks as of the weekend. For the first 3 days he was quite happy walking on the lead. He enjoyed sniffing around and of course the little treats used to encourage him.

    As of yesterday he has decided he doesnt actually want to walk. He will take the treats used as bribery, walk a few steps and then not budge. He is still small enough that I can drag him, however of course I do not want to do that.

    He has been walked with both a collar and harness and seemed pretty ok with both, so I dont think they are the problem. I think he is just trying to see how much he can test my patience (before looking at me with the cutest face in the universe!))

    We are starting puppy classes this evening, however if anyone else has ideas on why he has suddenly stopped walking and how to overcome this please help.

    Also he is happy to run about outside in the garden and he will walk relitively well with my OH's parents dog.

    Sorry for the long post....

    Thanks
     
  2. Manoy Moneelil

    Manoy Moneelil PetForums VIP

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    We had a similar situation with our GR pup a few months ago when he was new to us. Lead adverse and no real enthusiasm for walking. There's no magic cure although we have the benefit of two other dogs in the family that provide a pack momentum for walking times.

    For big noisy distractions on the walk that he reacted to we just used some look-at-me, but this was more a case of us being a closer more familiar distraction. But his reaction to many things was as you describe to plonk his bum down and just sit cutely. I felt that this reaction was not so much resistance to walking but over stimulation - there was so much to see and different smells that he was not confident to carry on.

    If there is lead resistance you can use a house-lead, just a shorter length with no hand hole to get caught on anything around the house. Put it on before some indoor play-time or meals so the fact that a lead is going on is associated with good-times.

    As for treats; yes the GR will take them without end. For a treat to have value the dog must earn it and the threshold for giving the treat must not be too low.

    Assign more time to walking if you can, to allow for the pup-pauses. As I said having other dogs to provide momentum helped us a lot but on the solo walks we allowed a few pauses but when he started walking we tried to keep going at a pace that he could maintain.

    It didn't take long to get through this phase (not even weeks) - keep going. :thumbup:
     
    #2 Manoy Moneelil, Feb 2, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2012
  3. PennyGC

    PennyGC PetForums VIP

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    I would say that he's not 'trying your patience' but really is unsure about what's happening... take it slowly, keep using treats as reward, lots of praise and don't assume that because he's happy in one place, that he will be in all others. Quite right not to drag as this will make him unhappy and to hate the lead which isn't what you want at all. Give him confidence and take it slowly
     
  4. martmart

    martmart PetForums Member

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    I had the same problem with my chi when I first had him 12 years ago. He woulnd't budge on the lead so I was told to get him a harness. It took a while, but gentle pulls until he had to move forward abit, then I relaxed, gently pulled again...I did this and eventually he started to walk...no treats or praise needed in my case really.

    Personally...I think treats should only be used if you know how to use them as I believe its all about timing. I believe rewarding dog behaviour takes practice on the humans part and can result in undesired behaviour if not done properly with good timing......thats just my humble opinion based on my own experience but I stress Im no expert and Im not sure if others will agree with that!! So...again, in my humble opinion, you can achieve the walk without treats.

    Be gentle on me if Im wrong!! hehe.
     
  5. StaffsRmisunderstood

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    thats a strange 1... he was quite happy wiv the lead before but not now ? hav u dragged him or is the collar to tite/ hes relating walking on the lead to something bad :confused1: ... wen i trained bentley to walk on the lead i put his collar on in the house and let him get used t it ... make sure u can slip atleast a finger between the colar and his neck and check 4 anything on the collar that may b hurtin him or irratating him... then i put him on the lead while my partner stood a few feet away callin him with treats we wud walk towards my partner with the lead taught at first he hated it and would jump around like a madman but evetualy he related it to a good experience and now loves his walks! .... worth a try? :thumbup:
     
  6. fmhickey

    fmhickey PetForums Junior

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    Thanks for the responses. He hasnt been dradded or had anything happen on the lead that was bad and its loose enough on him also. I also let him get used to the lead and collar in the house before we ventured outside.
    I like your idea of bringing my partner with me, so that he can walk ahead. I think that I will try that. It's only been the last day, so hopefully we can get him happy about going on his walks again.

    Also another quick query for everyone - he is 11 weeks old and is doing well toilet trainging - at this stage how long should we be walking him for every day. is it 15 minutes at a time?

    thanks
     
  7. bestforpets

    bestforpets PetForums Junior

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    I know when you have a new puppy it's so tempting to get out and about, but there are so many different things to get used to in the world outside the safe haven of your home that it can be overwhelming. Rather than trying to go too far, just try venturing a very short distance initially, then a bit further each time, so perhaps a few minutes just outside the front of your house initially, then on the next walk a bit further along the road. Always try and end the walk while you're both still enjoying it (even if that is after 2 minutes), that way you won't build up any negative associations and you will get there.
     
  8. Barkie

    Barkie PetForums Senior

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    You can just do little ones and keep repeating them until they get confident then add a new bit on as they can go further happily. Our first walk OH had the lead and I went ahead a little way calling her and she was torn between wanting to catch up with me versus it being a big scary world of new surfaces and an unfamiliar place. Just build it up as they get confident. Same with traffic or anything new or scary we keep a distance until they get confident about it and we encourage her to be on a loose lead.

    Time wise bring them home while they are happy, carry them back if you need to, they can amble along on a soft surface or play and have a sit down with you just don't over do the hard surfaces. You'll get there as long as they enjoy the time they are out it doesn't matter how short it is as they get plenty of exercise in the house playing.
     
  9. Pointermum

    Pointermum PetForums VIP

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    One thing that was suggested to a friend of mine when her pup did the same thing was a extendable lead and it worked !
     
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