My Cardi pup Finnigan is now 13 weeks old and we still cannot get him to walk on a leash. He will walk for a minute or two without any problems but once he realizes the leash is on him, he just wants to play with it. He will bite onto the leash and not let go and he sill usually start tugging on it like it's a game. Once I manage to get it away from him he will just do it again and it seems like the more frustrated I get, the more riled up he gets. He will start making these whining/growling noises like a little gremlin and roll over on his back so that even if I do get the leash away from him, he's in the perfect position to grab it again. It's hard to tell if his getting worked up is just him thinking it's a a game or if he is testing me. It seems more like a game to him but I don't know why he doesn't care that I am mad. He can tell that I am mad when he does other things without my even having to say anything and he will act appropriately but when it comes to the leash, he just doesn't seem to care. Once we reach the point of him lying down with leash in mouth, I usually end up taking him back inside. I just don't know what to do to get him used to the leash. I've never had a puppy be this difficult when it comes to leash training before. Any advice? I tried using a very thin leash and keeping it behind his head so he wouldn't notice it but that didn't help. He looks at my hands and when he sees me holding it is when he becomes aware of its presence.

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Comment by Alice on February 19, 2009 at 3:59pm
I'll look into it. I don't know much about clicker training so I wasn't sure if it actually worked or not. Thanks for the advice!
Comment by Bryan on February 19, 2009 at 6:01am
Alice, try clicker training. It's fun, quick and easy. Google it. Time and patience. Lots of time and patience. Enjoy the ride.
Comment by Alice on December 18, 2008 at 2:58pm
Thanks for the pointers. I'll give it a try. :)
Comment by Caesar & Molly on December 17, 2008 at 8:53pm
I taught Caesar "Leave it". Here's how I did - when he grabs something in your house (you will only have to wait what... 5 seconds?). Say "Leave it" - Take it out of his mouth, repeat "Leave it!" and praise him (Corgis being Corgis with a treat). Be persistent and work on it daily. You will notice that after a while he will be willing to let go of the object, whatever it is. When you take him outside bring a pouch of treats with you and when he holds the lead say "Leave it!" and praise it when he does.

Now if he starts trying to walk you then I use a technique I saw on TV. He he sprints forward say "nah hah" firm, turn and start walking in the opposite direction. As soon as you turn say heel and praise him like nuts (treats and a whole lot of love) when he doesn't try to sprint and drag you.
Comment by Alice on December 16, 2008 at 6:05pm
I respect Caesar for the work he has done and the animals he has helped but I don't think his methods are for all people or dogs. Some of his techniques I agree with while others do seem a bit harsh and I would have trouble using on an adult dog let alone a puppy.

I realize Finn is very young which is why I was curious to see how other people's Corgis did with leash training and see if anyone would like to share any techniques that worked for them. I don't expect him to be perfect by any means but I know he is very intelligent and CAN learn it now, this is just one area where he chooses to be more rebellious. He learned come, sit, shake, roll over and down within a couple days but has yet to catch on to walking on a leash. I know he is very young and believe me, we are some of the most understanding, easy going parents around, but even so, it can be frustrating when you are home on your lunch break trying to take him out to go potty and he's too busy playing with the leash to do his business. :) We will just keep working with him and I know he'll catch on eventually. He will be going to puppy classes in a month so hopefully that will help as well. :)
Comment by cr4zym4n on December 16, 2008 at 4:51pm
First, while he certainly seems to have a knack for communicating w/ dogs, I personally think the Dog Whisperer methods are pretty harsh - and they are really negative reinforcements for troubled dogs - or for extreme circumstances w/ your own.

That being said, remember, Finn is only 3 months old. Conventionally, he should only be separated from his litter between 10-12 weeks. Now I'm not sure how long you've had him, but it couldn't've been long, even if you got him at 8 weeks. He is a veritable baby. Just stay patient and vigilant. I remember George would do something similar when he was 4 months old, only rather than play, after a few feet, he'd realize it was on him, and he'd lie down, petrified, and refuse to move. It would take 30 minutes just to walk around a New York city block! Took about a month for him to grow out of it. I'd say try to just stay calm, and don't react to his play gestures. Corgi's are indeed often all about play - the only time George even lets me pet him is when he is dead tired. Any other time, and he thinks it's a game of tag and he runs around like mad. Just stay patient, and continue working with him. When he walks w/o eating the leash, constantly praise him. When he goes for it, sternly correct him, and subsequently ignore him. I would also suggest just waiting for him to bore of it and dropping the leash on his own. Yes, there will be a lot of frustrated standing around, but you've got to show that you are unaffected by his gestures, and that's where the patience comes into play. Again, remember he is still very very young - so don't expect instant results; it will take some time, but he will get it.
Comment by Alice on December 16, 2008 at 3:51pm
Finn is 3 months old now which is why it is so frustrating. Sometimes he will walk a short distance with the leash in his mouth. Should I allow him to hold it if that means he will walk or should I make him drop it which turns into a never ending battle and that's why I end up just taking him back inside? I've tried teaching him "drop it" by giving him a treat when he did let go and it worked pretty well inside the house but once we get outside all commands go out the window. Someone suggested using the Dog Whisperer method of putting him on the ground like another dog would but I don't know that he would understand that at this age.
Comment by Michelle on December 16, 2008 at 3:44pm
Well...I think its official you have....a party corgi. I think it will get better just keep working with him. Try holding the leash taunt where he has to walk right at you feet and there is no slack he can bite and play with. Our breeders recomended a head lead when he was young but my husband was able to get his attention without it. My very overgrown (5 year old puppy) still gets excited and bites and whines like a baby before we can get out of the front door. The good news is once we get out of the door he is much better.
Comment by Clif on December 16, 2008 at 3:27pm
It also took about three months before Oodeveer learned what a leash is for. One day it just sorta clicked and he stopped fighting and started walking. It was just like Josh said, once they get the idea a leash means it's time for a walk, they stop treating it like a chew toy and get excited because they're going for an outing! Just be firm and very patient and Finnigan will learn on his own.
Comment by Josh on December 16, 2008 at 12:38pm
With corgis... everything is a game. I went through 3 months of practically dragging seamus on his walks before he caught on that the leash was not a toy. He still treats walk time like a game some of the time but he does finally walk. Attaching the lead to a harness instead of the collar seemed to help a bit, of course then he tried to eat his harness every day for two weeks... but eventually he figured out that leash means walkies, and walkies means exercise and not play.

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