Feb 24, 2005, 11:35 PM
Post #15 of 45
Westies are strong willed dogs that don't like to be told what to do. They like to feel that they are doing something from choice rather than because they are being forced to do it. You have to give your Westie an incentive to do what you want her to do but make her feel that she is doing you a favour or that you are doing her a favour!!!!!
Re: [ERN] Jungle Terkking Questions
[In reply to]
The solution is treats! Most dogs are motivated by food. Start by giving her a treat like liver chews or some other dog treat. Let her enjoy it and get a taste for it. Praise her as she chews on it so she associates the treat with approval. Put the lead on her and give her a treat. Let her trail the lead around for 10mins or so, and talk to her reassuringly all that time. Give her a treat. Then, if she is not bothered by the lead, pick it up and lead her around, giving her a treat as you walk and she follows by your side.
Do this around your compound every day for a week, increasing the time she is on the lead each time. Watch her reaction to being led around. Don't tug or pull or do anything that might upset her or make her feel uncomfortable about the lead . Always keep her by your side or slightly ahead of you. If she walks slowly then reduce your speed to keep at her pace. Give her a treat periodically.
During this time, train her to sit when you stop. This is very important because you are teaching her road sense. When you are walking on the road and you stop to check the road is clear before you cross the road, you want her to stop too. The last thing you'd want is for her to carry on walking and get knocked by a car.
Depending on how confident your dog feels with the lead, you can reduce the time spent walking around your compound to three or four days rather than a whole week. Most importantly, DON'T rush your dog about being used to the lead. Watch her response and use that as a guide as to the pace of progress. When she is used to the lead, being led around and feels confident about walking to heel and sitting when you stop, then take her out of your compound and walk around the neighbourhood. Give her a treat as you leave the gate. By this time, she should be so used to the lead and walking to heel that she shouldn't notice the lead and enjoy the exploration of "new ground". Walk her around for a while depending on how she responds to the walk. If she's anxious or gets fed up of being led around after 2 mins, go home. Don't rush her. Give her a treat when you get into the house and take off her lead.
Eventually, she will LOVE the sight of the lead because she will equate it with fun walks.
Does your dog's collar have a bell? I've found that Westies LOVE having bells on their collars. They are very egoistical dogs and bells are announcers of their presence. If your dog doesn't have a bell on her collar, add one and let her wear it around the house and see how she loves the jingle as she walks. That jingle will give her great pleasure when she goes out for walks on the lead.
Hope this helps.
"The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated" Mahatma Ghandi.
(This post was edited by Gus-Gus on Feb 24, 2005, 11:53 PM)