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Cassie HATES being put on a leash

Discussion in 'Sheltie Training' started by MissyGallant, May 6, 2019.

  1. MissyGallant

    MissyGallant Premium Member

    Dec 20, 2011
    Sheridan, Indiana
    I don't know what to do. Cassie hates being put on a leash. She simply digs in and refuses to be lead by a leash. She follows us around the yard if she isn't on a leash. But she will NOT go for a walk. I tried to do the be silly and make it fun thing yesterday, but she wouldn't budge. Any advice would be welcome.

    My husband thinks she'll be one of these dogs that won't use a leash. THIS TERRIFIES ME! I have to get her to walk on one before he takes off down the road without her on one. HELP
    KarenCurtis likes this.
  2. Sharon7

    Sharon7 Premium Member

    Oct 31, 2009
    Southern California
    Two thoughts, Missy. Have you had her drag a leash around without you holding it? Especially inside the house. That sometimes helps get them used to it tugging on them a bit. The other thing I've read about is peanut butter on the end of a long wooden spoon - kind of lure her with it so she forgets she is on leash. I remember our first Sheltie was this way too, and honestly it was 30 years ago so I don't remember how we finally got her over it.

    Good luck!!
  3. ghggp

    ghggp Moderator

    Aug 28, 2011
    Grosse Pointe, Michigan
    YouTube has some great videos on this subject...

    KarenCurtis likes this.
  4. RikyR

    RikyR Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2013
    Baton Rouge LA
    Are you using a collar or a harness? Zulu was not happy about the leash on a collar, but he never had an issue with the harness.
    Caro likes this.
  5. Caro

    Caro Moderator

    Jan 14, 2009
    Canberra, Australia
    Tully runs and hides when she sees a harness!
    Piper's mom likes this.
  6. Caro

    Caro Moderator

    Jan 14, 2009
    Canberra, Australia
    I agree with Sharon about leaving it on and letting her drag it around. I might add, do you have an old lead or piece of cloth you can tie it up (or in the case of the old lead cut it in half) and put it on, then start with a small lead to get used to the feeling, and slowly increase it. Always the best time to try a lead is when they are eating so from now on Cassie is only allowed to have meals with her leash on. You might also try doing any fun thing with a leash - so playtime has a leash as well.

    No dog is untrainable on a leash. Puppies will be headstrong about leashes - it restricts their movements and they want to play. Battle of the wills, who's going to win, you of course!
  7. MissyGallant

    MissyGallant Premium Member

    Dec 20, 2011
    Sheridan, Indiana
    Well, here's the latest. I bought a harness yesterday. I put it on her and we went to the front yard. She stood and shook for 20 minutes. She would eat the peanut butter if it was close enough. But the second I pulled it to where she would have to take one tiny step to get it, she refused to even look at it. So, I gave up and we went to the back yard. I let her run around with it attached to her. She did this with no problems. So, I'm just going to keep working this problem.
    Caro and Sharon7 like this.
  8. Ann

    Ann Moderator

    Feb 25, 2008
    Western Connecticut
    This isn't uncommon, Missy. We start training the show puppies from a young age to leash and frequently get this kind of reaction. I can't remember which, but one of mine would NOT walk on leash for the longest time. Then one day she just did! It does come, but may take some time and daily work. You've gotten some good suggestions here. I'd add try attaching her to you with the leash inside the house when you're standing (i.e. doing dishes) or moving around a bit too.

    Letting her drag the leash around when she's outside is good too, as others have said. Try to be casual about it, and keep the training sessions short. Remember, she can feel your tension through the leash! I can't speak to whether a collar is better than a harness...I'd start with whatever you plan to go forward with. A harness is more forgiving to a growing puppy's body, but she may respond better to a collar, so just go with what you think works best for now. Good luck!
  9. jomuir

    jomuir Premium Member

    May 10, 2011
    Pepper hates her leash too. Her first walk was being gently and lovingly dragged 3 houses away then home. It was so sad, she even laid down in neighbors lawn and went limp. A few cheerios helped encourage her. Now she loves walks and gets excited when its time to go, but runs away when the leash comes out. I’m going to try letting her wear her leash inside for a little while too.
  10. Wendy C

    Wendy C Premium Member

    May 30, 2019
    Paris, Ontario CANADA
    We let Cooper drag the leash before we started and then in the house we used treats walking beside him until he figured out it was ok. He loves walks now and will use collar or harness. It just takes patience and as with all things puppy each one is different.

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