How old should a puppy be before he is put on a leash, or "trained" to accept a leash? Mine is 8 weeks and I am trying to get it used to the leash, but all he does is chew it and try to bite it. Any tips on how to get the pup use to his leash?
I had Misty getting used to a leash by 8 weeks or so. Yes, she liked to bite and chew on it (still does). When she was young, I just held it up straight above her head, so she could not bite it. Now, it takes a bit more effort to keep her from biting it (she's almost 5 months old now). However, it's just a matter of patience and persistence.
I think if it were me, knowing what I know now, I would think about what your pups favorite place to be is, or favorite thing to do is; then, you might be able to put on the leash -- but the pup might stay focused on the "fun" thing he is engaging in, and thus be less obsessed with the leash itself. For instance, if your pup loves to fetch, maybe you could get out his favorite fetch toy, show it to him, and then clip the leash on and play some fetch.
The way I did it (not knowing what I know now), I would clip it on when Misty had to potty. It worked out pretty good; in retrospect, maybe she was so focused on needing to potty that she was able to be less focused on the leash itself.
Anyway, whatever the situation that you can come up with in which your pup might be most likely to ignore his leash, I would try putting in on him in that situation. Over time, he will get used to it!
We waited until Madison was around 3 months old.... BIG, HUGE mistake!! 3 months later, we're STILL getting her used to the leash. The first few times we put the leash on her and walked her around, you'd have thought she was having a seizure : I'm quitting my job, last day is Monday and after that we're working together EVERY day until I go back to work.
When we got Ben I tried putting the leash on him when he pottied or playing in the yard but once he pottied he would just sit there and not move at all and either play with the lease or not do anything. I tried to play fetch with him but he won't move. He just sits or lays down until you let go of the lease and then he will drag it and go play or whatever. I want him to be comfortable with the lease but how do I get him to get up without dragging him or making him? My other dog is perfect on a leash so would he pick up on that if I had them both on a leash and he saw how well my other dog does? I just need some help with the whole leash thing!!
Thanks for the advice guys, I tried putting him on the leash when he was doing his favorite activity but he drops everything and comes for the leash, so what I did was spray bitter apple on it, but while he was on the leash. So he could witness what happens when he bites it. He's pretty good with it now, and I think its working, I also introduced him to new areas of the house and front yard, while he was on the leash, so it is in his mind that he can only go there when he is on leash, and so he knows exactly what it means...Hopefully that works for others with similar problems.
I just held it up straight above her head, so she could not bite it.
You might want to be careful doing this; if you decide on obed classes later on, pulling straight up on the leash is one of the aids in teaching SIT. If you use it to keep the leash out of her mouth, she's going to be confused later on.
If you want to use the leash-biting habit as a 'teachable moment,' start to instill LEAVE IT or NO BITE. These will both come in handy as your pup ages.
dweck, good points. I forgot to say that I DID use the NO BITE commands when she would bite, so that she would learn, and this does of course allow you to take advantage of a "teachable moment." But in the mean time, when she was really little and didn't know the command, holding the leash where it was harder for her to grab it helped. Also, I did not put enough pressure on the leash while holding it up such that it was pulling her; it was just enough to keep the slack out of the leash.