Puppy Making you Crazy? Tether that Turbo Girl!

tetherMost of us would not walk an untrained puppy, off leash, next to a busy street. We realize the puppy is not trained, and she may wander into the street and get hit by a car.  We use a leash to keep the puppy safe.

Inside the house, it’s a little safer. No cars are going to break your puppy’s legs, and your puppy can’t run away from you and get kidnapped or lost. But she can get into trouble and be quite a nuisance!  You can always crate your puppy, but that doesn’t teach her how to behave inside the house.

The same applies to backyard adventures. Puppies dig in flower beds, run on top of pool covers, chew air conditioning low voltage wires and eat plants – RIGHT in FRONT of YOU! You are not going to teach your puppy by yelling and screaming or spanking when the puppy gets into trouble. Your job is to prevent the puppy from practicing naughty behaviors. You’ll teach that rascal later, but for now, PREVENT the practice!!

You need a sort of halfway house, something between crating and letting your puppy run loose and terrorize the backyard or household.

The easy solution is to use a tether. A tether is a rope, with a snap attached to one end.  It’s like a leash without the handle. You can tie the loose end around a doorknob, table leg, or your waist to prevent your puppy from stealing objects and racing through your house. Never tie your dog to a piece of furniture and leave him. Tethers are for the times when you are nearby. When guests come over, ask your puppy to sit and then step on the rope to prevent jumping or racing out the door. I like to tie it around my waist so I can give Bentley instructions, and tell him what to so (sit, down, stay, etc.) when life gets exciting.

I buy 50 foot packages of nylon rope from Lowe’s to make a tether. The rope is round, and unlike a flat leash with a loop, it’s not as likely to get wedged under a furniture leg. The rope is inexpensive. I buy smaller diameter rope for small dogs and 1/2″ or 5/8″ diameter for medium and larger dogs.

If the puppy chews it, so what? I’ll have a shorter tether or make a new one.

I like them to be 5-9 feet. That gives me enough slack to wrap the tether around my waist or around a piece of furniture.

Attach the tether and let the puppy drag it as she explores your den. You can step on the tether to keep her from jumping up or running away with your remote control.  You can tie it to a piece of furniture with a dog bed nearby. You can wrap the end around a door knob as you change clothes. You can use the tether outside too.  Instead of calling and calling, and having your puppy ignore your come command, just pick up the rope and coax her to come to you.

If you use the tether, it’s a good opportunity to teach your puppy about leashes, collar pressure, and staying connected to you. Instead of pulling the puppy with the rope, use your charm and coax her to stay nearby. Practice LOOK (attention on cue) and HERE, as you putter around the house.

If you prevent your puppy from practicing bad habits, you will be glad!

Alan J Turner

How’s Bentley – Memphis

Private and Group Dog Obedience Trainer

Collierville, Memphis, Germantown TN

Teach Your Dog Commands for Moving Through Doorways – Inside / Outside

Bent_InsideInside – Outside

Description: The dog moves through an open door on command, on and off leash.

Function: Teach the dog to move through doors on command.

Prerequisites: Condition a reward marker; “Sit”, “Attention – Without Cue”;

Target Here”

Time: 4 Days

Many of my clients complain that their dogs will not enter and exit their houses on command. The dogs ignore their owners, stand and look at their owners, or run away.

Off leash obedience is an advanced skill, even when the dog is in a fenced area. Before you can expect your dog to obey when he or she is 50 feet away, first you should practice when the dog is on a short leash, then a long line.

There are many reasons a dog might not be motivated to obey. Some dogs may prefer the inside because of the weather outside. If an owner has a history of calling their dog inside, placing the dog in  the crate, and leaving the house, the dog may remember and be hesitant to come inside. Other dogs like to chase critters and bark at noises outside.

Regardless of the underlying reasons, training and practice is the solution. I use the “Inside – Outside” game to teach dogs to move through doorways. To play the game, follow these suggestions.

First Day:

Place your dog on a 6 foot leash.

Stand inside your house next to an exit door.

Tell your dog to sit. Praise your dog for the sit.

Tell your dog, “Outside”.

Open the door and walk outside. Don’t pull that rascal through the door. Make some “kissy” noises to charm your dog as you and your dog walk through the door to the outside. Mark the instant he or she passes through the doorway.

Close the door.

Drop the leash.

Toss a treat on the ground outside, several feet away from the door.

Pick up the leash.

Tell your dog to sit. Praise your dog for the sit.

Tell your dog, “Inside”.

Open the door and walk inside. Don’t pull that rascal through the door. Use your voice to charm your dog as you and your dog walk through the door to the inside.

Mark the instant he or she passes through the doorway.

Close the door.

Drop the leash.

Toss a treat on the floor inside, several feet away from the door.

Repeat the sequence 2 more times for a total of 6 trials (3 Outside – 3 Inside) during each practice session. Hold 3 of these practice sessions every day. End each session with a walk, a game of fetch, or any of your dog’s favorite play activities.

Next Day:

Play the Inside – Outside game 3 times each day for a total of 18 trials. Practice at each door you plan to enter and exit with your dog during each session. For example, if you use 2 doors, practice the sequence 2 times at 1 door and 1 time at the other door. If you have 3 doors, practice one sequence at each door.

Third Day:

Stand inside your house next to an exit door to a fenced area, with no leash attached.

Call your dog, using the two-finger target.

Mark the instant your dog touches the target and immediately tell your dog to sit. Praise your dog for the sit.

Tell your dog, “Outside”.

Open the door.

Step into the door opening.

Your dog will pass through the door.

Mark the instant he or she passes through the doorway.

Toss a treat on the ground outside, several feet away from the door.

Close the door. Your dog will be on the outside and you will be on the inside.

Immediately walk outside. Close the door.

Call your dog, using the two-finger target.

Mark the instant your dog touches the target and immediately tell your dog to sit. Praise your dog for the sit.

Open the door and tell your dog, “Inside”.

Step into the door opening. Your dog will pass through the door. Mark the instant he or she passes through the doorway.

Toss a treat on the floor inside, several feet away from the door. Close the door. Your dog will be on the inside and you will be on the outside.

Repeat the sequence 2 more times for a total of 6 trials (3 Outside – 3 Inside) during each practice session. Hold 3 of these practice sessions every day. End each session with a walk, a game of fetch, or any of your dog’s favorite play activities.

Fourth Day:

Fade the marker and the food treat, and reduce your motion of moving into the doorway. When your dog moves through the door, offer verbal praise and toss a ball or a toy instead of a treat. You can step inside or outside with your dog, or not.

Stand inside your house next to an exit door to a fenced area, with no leash attached.

Tell your dog to sit. Praise your dog for the sit.

Tell your dog, “Outside”.

Open the door.

Your dog will pass through the door.

Praise your dog.

Toss a ball or toy outside, several feet away from the door.

Close the door. Your dog will be on the outside and you will be on the inside.

Open the door and walk outside. Close the door.

Tell your dog to sit. Praise your dog for the sit.

Open the door and tell your dog, “Inside”.

Your dog will pass through the door.

Close the door. Your dog will be on the inside and you will be on the outside.

Repeat the sequence 2 more times for a total of 6 trials (3 Outside – 3 Inside) during each practice session. Hold 3 of these practice sessions every day. End each session with a walk, a game of fetch, or any of your dog’s favorite play activities.



Ruger LCP 380 Pocket Handgun with Safety Off, or Half Trained, Aggressive, Protection Dog?

Armani GSDI view personal protection dogs for suburban families like handguns. Exactly where do you go that demands such a high level of defense? Why do you go there? What do you want your dog to protect, and when?

Imagine a lady’s purse concealing a Ruger LCP 380 automatic pistol. Imagine the purse is filled with cosmetics, billfold, and numerous other goodies that ladies carry in their purses. Imagine the pistol is loaded and the safety is off.  YIKES! That’s an accident waiting to happen.

Over the past year, I’ve noticed a trend in new dog owners. Families are getting German Shepherd Dogs and other protection breeds like the Doberman Pincher or Cane Corso. All of the mentioned breeds can be the perfect family pet, with an educated owner. Problems arise when the amateurs attempt to train the dog to be warriors by increasing aggressive responses.

Some of these people praise and reward the dogs for aggressive behaviors, regardless of the situation. People have the idea that the dogs will protect them, and guard their property.  Bad idea. The owners create a dog that will guard and attack, without discrimination!

Dog breeds that were specifically created for protection, guard duty, and fighting are not the best choice for a novice dog owner. Without guidance and extensive training, these guys are no better than a loaded and cocked handgun banging around in a purse.

The average person does not know how to train a dog to perform basic commands, much less advanced protection behaviors. A guarding dog, in the hands of a family dog owner, a dog that is purposely rewarded for aggressive behaviors, is an accident waiting to happen. The instances where the dog needs to guard are very rare, and the instances when the dog should relax for visiting children and friends is often.

Say, regardless of the dog you own, or want to own, you’ll need a 6 foot, leather training leash to teach Basic Obedience COMMANDS.

Here’s a link to Amazon, who has the best price for a braided, 6 foot, 1/2″ leather leash.

Alan J Turner Memphis TN

How’s Bentley – 21st Century Canine Relationship Specialist

Reactive Dog Workshop


Review:Dog Training Leash – Leather vs. Flat Nylon

Sparky_TetherThis article has a dual purpose. 1) to point out features of leather and nylon dog training leashes; 2) to provide a direct link for those who want to purchase a leather dog training lead for the best price.

There are many choices among dog equipment and supplies. Some tools are better for some situations. Over the years, I have refined my list of favorite dog training supplies. I used to shop online at pet speciality supply stores, but now I can purchase the items through Amazon.

I’ll say it now. I prefer leather leashes. The benefits are discussed in this article. Generally speaking, leather leashes cost more than nylon leashes. But that is not always the case. It depends on where you buy your leash. If you shop wisely, you can purchase a leather leash for just a bit more than a nylon leash. The leather leash at Amazon, linked in this article is priced to sell! I’ve paid more for nylon leashes!

Nylon leashes have benefits too. If you like color, forget about leather. Another concern for some users is the ability to sterilize the leash. A leather leash is not a good choice for vet clinics, shelters, rescue organizations, etc., because you cannot wash and sterilize the leather leashes. If you are in this situation, choose a nylon leash.

Leashes come in all lengths. There are traffic leads of 2 feet. There are long lines, which are 8 to 100 feet long. In this article, I am discussing training leads of 4-6 feet in length, with clasps that snap onto the dog’s equipment.

Leashes come in different widths too. Wider is not necessarily better. Generally speaking, the wider the leash, the heavier the clasp. Choose a width that fits your hand and your dog. A 1″ wide leash doesn’t fit into small hands very well. Ladies, children and men with smaller hands will like a 3/8″ – 1/2″ wide leash. Compared to a smaller lead, the clasp on a 1″ wide leash will be huge, and too heavy for a 15 lb. dog! If you have a 5 lb. yorkie or other toy breed, a 1/4″ leather or nylon will be fine.

  • I use a 1/4″ leather lead to walk Bentley, my 18 lb. terrier.
  • When I handle a 25-75 lb. dog, I use a 3/8″ or 1/2″ wide leather leash.
  • If the dog is 80 lbs or more, I’ll use a hefty 5/8″ leather leash.

My general training leashes are 5 or 6 feet in length. A shorter leash may be helpful if you have trouble controlling your dog in traffic.

Here’s a link to the best price for a braided, 6 foot, 1/2″ leather leash.

A good training leash has several functions. First, it should function. The snap should be easy to operate and fail proof. I dislike the lobster claw and variations of a spring loaded snap (without a knob). I’ve seen more than one person holding an empty leash in their hands when the clasps failed! I’ve never experienced a failure with a bolt snap type of clasp. A bolt snap has a spring loaded knob you slide down to open the hook.

Next, a leash should be durable. The fewer seams in the leash, the better! Nylon leashes are stitches or stapled. The joints will eventually fail, and the nylon material will deteriorate over time. Leather leashes are stitched, stapled, or braided. The braided leather leashes will last a lifetime (unless you let your dog chew it).

The leash should be easy to hold and grip.
You should never slide the handle end of the leash onto your arm, like a bracelet.
That’s the danger zone!

Nylon leashes are okay for grip, but they compress in your hands. You’ll need a wider nylon leash, because the slick nylon is difficult to grip. You’ll exert more pressure on your hand muscles hanging on to a nylon leash. A leather leash is easier to grip. Leather doesn’t compress and change shapes. Of course, you can always form a knot at just the right spot, in either style leash to get a better grip.

In the picture, Sparky is not wearing a training leash. He’s sporting a home made, 8′ tether!

Happy Training!

Alan J Turner – How’s Bentley – Memphis TN
Reactive Dog Workshops

Goals of Off Leash Obedience or Guard Dog Performances by the Family Dog

p_480_320_1E6B3BD9-8F00-48B9-BC22-54B4AE73B475.jpegOkay, so you want your puppy to stay in the yard, when off leash. You want your puppy to ignore that sandwich your toddler is dangling at her nose level.

You want your puppy to sit calmly while you vacuum. You want your dog to protect and guard your home and family.

You want your puppy to grow into a combination of Lassie, a Guide Dog for the Blind, or a canine Police Officer.

Good for You!
Lofty goals are great, for without them man would not have accomplished space travel or the Internet!

But, before your puppy can get a PhD in pet performance, she must learn basic obedience commands. She should graduate from Kindergarten, attend Grade School, pass Middle School, excel at High School level behaviors, and then attend College and Graduate School. And, your puppy will need an expert teacher.

You get the idea. All these goals may be within your reach. But, you’ll never know unless you learn a bit about communication, motivation, and how dogs learn. You’ll never know unless you form a training plan, apply your knowledge during every interaction with your canine companion, and you practice every single day, with increasingly higher levels of distractions.

You will be your dog’s Kindergarten mom, Grade School principle, Middle School counseler, High School mentor, and College Professor.

You, my newly appointed animal training intern, are on a steep learning curve. You, my enthusiastic new puppy owner, have much to learn, and much to do, if you want to reach those goals.

Don’t fret.

Dog training is not quantum physics! Anyone can learn how to succeed. Here are your first steps.

Meet your dog’s physical, social and emotional needs.

Kindly prevent your puppy from practicing unwanted behaviors.

Establish a meaningful method to communicate. Condition a reward marker.

Enact the Rewards Awareness Program.

Establish a Reward System.

This dogand site is filled with instructions and tips about raising and training a dog.

Look around and begin your adventure!

Happy Training!

Alan J Turner
How’s Bentley – Memphis
21st Century Canine Relationship Specialist

Canine Behavior Modification for Reactive, Unwanted, Behaviors, including Fear and Aggression


LilyOkay, so your dog is fearful, barking, lunging and otherwise distressed when he or she sees people, trucks, cars, or dogs. Depending on who you are talking to, those behaviors may be classified as territory or protective aggression, possession aggression, inter-dog aggression, fear aggression, or leash aggression.

I’ll refer to the other people, other dogs, trucks, cars, as “triggers”, because they trigger the fear or aggression in your dog.

There are volumes of articles and books on how to modify fearful and aggressive behaviors in dogs. Some of the information may be helpful and other information is outdated and less helpful.

A canine modification plan is fluid. It changes as you progress. Because of all the variables, and the constant adjustments when treating fear and aggression in dogs, it’s not feasible for me to post all the methods and solutions I would use in a private consultation.

But I can give you this overview and some instructions that might work with your dog.

This article is about visual triggers. If your dog reacts to noises, the same concepts apply.

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First you need to change your dog’s perception of the triggers. Then you will use rewards to pay your dog for desirable, non reactive behaviors, when the trigger is in sight.

Before you actually do exercises with your dog in the field, please review this checklist.

Meet your dog’s physical, social and emotional needs.

Kindly prevent your dog from practicing unwanted reactive behaviors.

Establish a method to communicate precisely. Condition a reward marker.

Enact the Rewards Awareness Program.

Establish a Reward System.

Teach your dog “attention on cue” or “look”.

Practice “look” in various places with increasing levels of distractions (distractions should not be people or dogs or whatever triggers the unwanted, reactive, behaviors).

Teach your dog to sit on command.

Practice “sit” in various places with increasing levels of distractions (distractions should not be people or dogs or whatever triggers the unwanted, reactive, behaviors).

Teach your dog to bump your two-finger target to the cue, “here”.

Practice “here” in various places with increasing levels of distractions (distractions should not be people or dogs or whatever triggers the unwanted, reactive behaviors).

Teach your dog to walk nicely on a loose lead or to heel.

Practice walking nicely in various places with increasing levels of distractions (distractions should not include the triggers).

Optional: Obtain a Gentle Leader head collar or a Canny Collar. Introduce your dog to the head collar and practice with the head collar, so that your dog is not distracted by wearing the head collar. Head collars make it possible to safely move or control your dog’s pulling behaviors.

Optional: If your dog is “crazy excited” for squeaky toys or balls, get a couple of new ones and save them for these exercises. You can use the toys as rewards, or as distractions to get your dog’s attention when the triggers are too close.

Now you can begin the real work!

Identify the Threshold

Find the distance where your dog can see the trigger but not react with “out of control” barking, lunging, et cetera. I’ll refer to this distance as the threshold for reactivity. It may be 400 yards or 20 feet. It will change depending on the environment, your dog’s current emotional or physical state, or any number of factors.

The threshold is fluid, not static. You’ll need to find the threshold every time you start a practice session. Whatever it is right now, this distance or threshold will become shorter and shorter as you practice. You’ll always start each session outside the threshold.

Set up the Practice Session

For this step you’ll need the help of others. Their jobs will be to present the trigger outside the threshold, move a few steps closer and then move back outside the threshold.

If you don’t have any helpers, you can still set up the session. Go to a place where you are likely to see the triggers, such as a walking path at the park or a parking lot of a pet supply store. Get several feet off the path or away from the traffic, outside the threshold.

It helps if your dog is hungry. Do this before feeding time or withhold dinner and feed during these sessions.

Change your Dog’s Perception

Before you start with the triggers, ask your dog to perform a few simple commands such as “here’ or “sit”. This will engage your dog to pay attention to you!

Stand outside the threshold of a trigger. The instant you see the dog or person or car approaching, announce the trigger. Tell your dog something like “that’s a friend or that’s a truck” and immediately feed your dog several treats. Keep feeding until the trigger has retreated and is no longer nearby.

(If your starts barking or lunging, you are too close the the trigger, move away. If your dog starts to stare or looks like he or she might be ready to bark and lunge, command “here” and present your two finger target, or ask your dog to “look”. Either one of these commands gets the dog to look away from the trigger and focus on you.)

This sequence is called a cycle. You will hold many cycles during a session.

Between each cycle, give your dog a tension rest to absorb the recent events. The tension rest should be as as long as it took to perform the cycle. So, if the trigger is in sight for 10 seconds before it moves outside the threshold, the duration of the tension rest immediately after the cycle will be at least 10 seconds.

Repeat this process for at least 30 minutes per session. Perform another cycle followed by a tension rest. The idea is to change your dog’s immediate, involuntary responses to the trigger.

Instead of “oh no, there’s another dog, which is immediately followed by involuntary barking, fleeing, freezing or lunging (fight, flight, freeze behaviors), you want your dog’s initial involuntary response to the sight of the triggers to be anticipation of food. You are using classical conditioning to associate the trigger with the delivery of food. Your dog cannot be aggressive or fearful and salivate in anticipation of food at the same instant!

As you progress through the session, you will notice your dog will begin to ignore the trigger and focus on you and the food as soon as you announce the trigger. Perfect. Now you can move a bit closer to the trigger and continue. The threshold is getting shorter!

Repeat these sessions until your dog automatically looks towards you whenever a trigger is in sight. Continue to announce the triggers on routine walks, and anytime you are interacting with your dog, be it during a practice session, or not.

Real LIfe Ambush

If you get “ambushed” by a trigger during an outing, and you are not ready with several treats, kindly ask your dog to sit facing you, or to bump your two finger target. If she is too excited, move her away from the trigger and ask again. Repeat this sequence until your dog is far enough away that she will listen to your commands.

This basic method will work with most dogs, and most reactive behaviors, however it is not as efficient as perception modification via Syn Alia Training System.


Keep in mind, there are many factors about your relationship and your daily interactions with your dog that influence behaviors. In addition, your dog may be influenced by other dogs in the household, medical conditions, diet, nutrition, genetic and or neurological factors. If your dog constantly barks at triggers from inside the house, or fence fights with the dogs next door, the prognosis is poor.

You’ll need to prevent your dog from practicing fear and aggression if you want to succeed!

Happy Training!

Alan J Turner

How’s Bentley

Canine Behavior Modification for Fear, Aggression in Dogs – Memphis TN

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Untrained Dog Misbehaving? Attach a Leash. You are a Zookeeper.


German Shepherd DogIf you have a new puppy or dog, you need to manage the environment so your puppy does not practice rude behaviors. Use baby gates, crates, leashes, tethers to control your pup’s access to territory.

Many people overlook the most basic tool for controlling a dog inside the house, the leash. It’s a neat device that has a coupler on one end that attaches to your dog’s collar.

Several times a week, I hear people say, “my dog jumps up on guests or runs out the door at every opportunity”?   I suspect these people do not have a leash attached!

Off leash obedience is an advanced skill. No one would take their untrained dog for a walk, next to Poplar avenue, without attaching a leash. Why? Because they know their dogs are likely to go into the street, or chase a car ,or otherwise get into trouble.  They realize their dog is not trained, does not respond to voice commands, and they manage the environment by attaching a leash. With a leash attached, the dog is safely connected and unable to make stupid choices. GREAT!

Off leash obedience is an advanced skill, regardless if the location is inside or outside. Instead of waiting for your puppy to make mistakes, and attempting to teach via corrections, help your puppy make the right choices and reinforce good behaviors with rewards. You can kindly prevent your utrained dog from jumping up on guests, counter surfing, getting into the trash, or other wise destroying your home by attaching a leash or tether.

The long term solution for naughty behaviors is simple. Learn how to train your dog and then do it!

Here is an outline of your tasks:

Dog Training Success

  • Meet your dog’s social, emotional and physical needs.
  • Kindly prevent your pet from practicing unwanted behaviors. Attach a leash.
  • Learn how to tell your dog exactly what you want.
  • Learn how to motivate your dog to want the same things as you.
  • Change your behaviors in order to change your dog’s behaviors.
  • Form a global training plan.
  • Teach your dog coping skills.
  • Teach your dog basic commands.
  • Practice with your dog every day.
  • Practice with your dog in many different locations.
  • Practice with your dog while increasing the level of distractions.
  • Practice with your dog on a short leash, and then on a long line – before you go off leash.

Happy Training!

Alan J Turner

Certified Companion Animal Behavior Counselor & Trainer – Canine Specialization

Does Your Dog Get too Excited to Attach a Leash? Teach Leash Time!

JavaLeash

The goal of this exercise is to teach a dog to sit patiently while you attach a leash. This is for dogs that like to have the leash attached, but are so excited that it’s difficult to snap on a leash. If your dog is shy or afraid of the leash, visit this page.

Most dogs become very excited at the sight of a leash. Dogs bark, jump and wiggle which makes it very difficult for us to attach our leashes. Some young dogs bite and mouth while we try and attach the leash. With theses guys, I usually place a chew toy in their mouth before I attach the leash.

There are several different approaches we can use to solve this problem. Here’s one that’s easy to follow and effective!

It helps to understand why your dog gets excited. The reason dogs become excited when they see the leash is because the leash predicts an outing. Therefore, if the leash does not predict an outing, the dogs will not become excited at the sight of the leash.

Step 1)

Get your leash. Do not speak to your dog. Hold the leash land walk around the house for a few minutes. Put the leash away. Repeat this sequence several times within a few hours. Repeat (several days if necessary) until your dog is not excited by the sight of you carrying the leash and then perform S tep 2.

Step 2)

Get your leash. Do not speak to your dog. Hold the leash for a few minutes. Tell your dog “leash time” and then attach it to your dog’s collar. Hand you dog a food treat. Drop the leash and let your dog drag it around the house.

After several minutes, tell your dog “leash time” and remove the leash. Hand your dog a food treat. Repeat many times within a few hours.

Step 3)

If your dog fails to sit during this step, just walk away with the leash in hand and try again later. If your dog fails again, go back to Step 1 and start over.

Get your leash. Tell your dog “leash time” and then immediately tell your dog “sit”.  Praise your dog for the sit; attach the leash, and then give your dog a food treat. Let your dog drag the leash around the house for several minutes.

Tell your dog “leash time”; “sit”. Praise your dog for the sit and remove the leash. Give your dog a food treat. Repeat many times within a few hours.

After several of these sequences, your dog will know exactly what to do when you say “leash time, sit”! You can discontinue the food treat once your dog is reliable. Of course, if you have a treat handy, why not reward your dog for sitting politely?

When you are going to take your dog on an outing, tell him or her before you get the leash. Say something like “Let’s go out” and then say “leash time, sit”.

Happy Training!

Alan J Turner
Companion Animal Behavior Counselor and Trainer
Private Sessions for Aggressive, Fearful Dogs
How’s Bentley- Memphis, Collierville, Germantown, TN


Buy Canny Collar USA – Buy for $25.95 plus $6.95 shipping anywhere in USA.

CannywebStop your dog from pulling! The Canny Collar is the first head collar that anyone can fit and use. If you can attach a buckle collar to your dog, you can fit the Canny Collar. Price is $25.95 plus a flat rate, USA shipping charge of $6.95.

Click Here to Order a Canny Collar today!

For years, I have suggested head collars for my clients.  Clients use the equipment to get the dog to perform the good behavior, then they reward the dog for walking nicely!

A core problem with the Gentle Leader, Halti, and the Snoot Loop is fitting the collar correctly. Until now, all head collars required fine tuning and adjustments.  Toss in an exuberant dog (why else would the people need a head collar?) and many people become frustrated and switch to other no pull devices.

The Canny Collar has fast become my favorite choice for many situations!  Just order the correct size and you are ready to start enjoying walks with your dog!  Click Here for a Size Chart.

None of the big box pet supply stores in Memphis, Germantown, or Collierville TN carry the Canny Collar. None of the speciality pet supply stores, such as Three Dog Bakery or All About Pets, or Hollywood Feed carry the Canny Collar.

Visit the Products Page to order your Canny Collar today!

Alan J Turner

Companion Animal Behavior Counselor & Trainer – canine specialization

How’s Bentley – Memphis, Collierville, Germantown TN

Private and Group Dog Training

Shy Puppy? Afraid of Leash or Collar? Tips and Suggestions

img_1586

Some puppies are uncomfortable when exposed to new environments or equipment. If your puppy becomes excited or frightened, just name the item or event, and act as if all is well.

If your puppy remains focused on the item or event, distract his or her attention from the scary thing.

Instead of saying “It’s OK”, divert your pup’s attention with a treat or a toy.

It’s normal for puppies to be leery of new things. Let your puppy adjust with minimal input from you. Both you and the pup should play the roles of observers.

Some people believe it’s a sign of confidence if a puppy never becomes frightened. A truer test is to measure the length of time it takes for a puppy to return to a normal state.

Afraid of Collar or Leash

Occasionally clients report their puppies “freeze up” or lie down when they attach a leash, collar or harness.

This poses a problem in regards to house training, walking and managing unwanted behaviors, such as jumping up.

I tell all my clients to attach a leash or short line, even when their puppies are inside the house. This is so they can prevent their dogs and puppies from practicing rude behaviors.

The leash is an excellent inside and outside management tool. All dogs should be able to relax when a leash is attached, regardless of the dog’s location.

Initial protests to equipment fittings are not difficult to resolve unless people ignore the protests and drag their puppies via attached equipment.

If your puppy is afraid of a collar or harness, do this. Let your puppy investigate and smell the item. Name it. Attach the collar or harness, praise your puppy; hand him a food treat and then remove it. Repeat several times.

Next, attach the equipment immediately before feeding. Praise your pup. After your puppy has eaten, remove the item. Do this for several meals but methodically increase the amount of time the collar or harness is attached after the meal. In a few days, your puppy will like his equipment!

Some puppies quickly learn to dislike the leash because their owners pull and jerk on the leash.

Always supervise any dog when a leash is attached.

If, while following these instructions, your puppy is still afraid of the leash, break your introduction process into more, smaller steps. Use a very short piece of a leash instead of a 4 or 6 foot leash. Once your dog is accustomed to the short piece, use a longer piece.

Introduce the concept of restriction and the leash in several small steps and your puppy will learn to like the leash!

First, let your pup smell and investigate the leash. Name it.

Next, attach the leash and praise your dog. Hand him a food treat. Remove the leash.

After several instances of attaching the leash and immediately removing it, attach a short, lightweight, leash and let your puppy drag it around for a while. Do not pick up the end of the leash. Do this several times throughout the day, or every evening for a few days.

The subsequent step is to pick up the end of the leash, hand your puppy a food treat, and then drop the leash.

Do this several times in one session. Hold a few sessions throughout the day or evening.

Next you’ll introduce the concept of leash and equipment pressure.

Tell your puppy, “This is pressure”, and apply a slight, steady, and brief tug on the equipment. Praise your puppy and hand him a food treat. Repeat a few times.

Add just a bit more pressure each time. Vary the area of the pup’s body that is affected by the pressure by tugging right, left, up, down.

Finally, you will pick up the leash and walk one step. Don’t pull your puppy! The leash should be loose and not tight. Coax your puppy. Praise your puppy for following you. Repeat several times, but add another step each time.

After few instances, your puppy will be accepting of the leash.

Alan J Turner – Companion Animal Behavior Counselor & Trainer, Canine Specialization
Member: APDT