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10 weeks
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Ultimate Puppy Program

Ultimate Puppy Program

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Comments (4)

  1. Heather Humphrey

    Hi there, our nearly four-month-old puppy HATES having her harness put on – and her collar for that matter. It’s quite a struggle and she runs from us when we are trying to put it on her, and then acts like she’s scared of us for quite a while afterward making it a super tough process. We are trying to reinforce with treats, but wondered if you have any suggestions for this?

    1. Steffi Trott

      Did you see our lesson on the collar grabbing already? Usually, if dogs don’t like having their collar put on, working on tolerating grabbing it is a good first step towards tolerating putting it on. When you grab it/put it on, make sure to do so from the side (not bending over her), and pair with maaaaaany treats.
      In order of difficulty, from least difficult to most difficult we would have:
      – putting on harness
      – putting on collar
      – grabbing harness/collar

      So I would put on a collar (use as many treats as a distraction as you want) and work on the collar grabbing game. If you do this on a weekend day/a day when you are home all day long and practice 5 times during that day with great treats, she should be a lot better already by that night. Then as a next step, during the collar grab game, unclip and clip the collar without actually taking it off all the way. If that works well – unclip it, take it off and put it right back on. And so on, until she is good with the collar.
      Once the collar goes well, you can move up in difficulty to the harness.

      Of course, you might want to take her on a walk on the harness before you have gone through all that retraining process. If you need a “quick fix” for putting on the harness, letting the puppy lick something usually works well. For example the spoon from the spoon heeling exercise – put some spray cheese on there and quickly put on the harness while she is occupied. Note that this is a “fix for the moment” and less of a long-term teaching. So it is always best to combine those – the quick fix and the longterm training 🙂

  2. Kelly Corl

    Can you give me a link to similar harnesses like the one you use please?

    1. Steffi Trott

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