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Discussion Starter #1
We picked up our new 8 week old puppy on Friday & are already enchanted by her. We could use a few suggestions though. There is so much to teach her & we don’t want to be unrealistic in what to expect her to learn at this stage. She has already started to response to sit, the potty command (be quick) at times and her name. We are crate training & she settles herself fairly quickly.

We would like to start tethering. How long/short should the tether be? We have a 6 foot leash that I wrap around my waist but that doesn’t leave a lot of length. She has to be by my feet that way with little room for maneuvering. My husband is taller & I don’t think our pup will have enough leash.

Another issue: when walking, she wants to smell everything & put everything in her mouth (not a big surprise). How do we balance this with walking? How do we keep her from eating anything & everything? We are pulsing the leash to get her moving but at times we are doing an awful lot of pulsing. Any advice?

We really appreciate any & all suggestions.
 

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Every new command takes a minimum of 50 repetitions to learn a behavior. She will adapt to whatever you require of her. You seem reasonable so far....give yourself about 2 weeks of doing what you are doing.
 

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My trainer suggested letting the puppy run free with a harness for the first 4 months for exploration. It wasn't until after 4 months where we started on the obedience with heal etc. I know all trainers are different though.
 

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You can buy lightweight nylon cord at a hardware store that you can make whatever length you want. Just attach a clasp like on a leash and presto!
 

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My trainer suggested letting the puppy run free with a harness for the first 4 months for exploration. It wasn't until after 4 months where we started on the obedience with heal etc. I know all trainers are different though.
Yikes!!! I would not wait 4 months to teach a dog good leash manners?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I guess I wasn't clear enough on my questions. Not sure if this explains it any better.

1. If I am tethering how much length should she have? I know she should have to stay close by me but don't know what type of space contraints are needed.

2. We aren't trying to get her to heel at this point. Just to learn to walk with us keeping the leash loose & not to sniff or eat everything.
 

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I guess I wasn't clear enough on my questions. Not sure if this explains it any better.

1. If I am tethering how much length should she have? I know she should have to stay close by me but don't know what type of space contraints are needed.

2. We aren't trying to get her to heel at this point. Just to learn to walk with us keeping the leash loose & not to sniff or eat everything.
1. Enough space so that puppy can lie down comfortably and so that you do not step on her, but not so much that she can move away and make a puddle. :)

2. The puppy stops to stop and eat/sniff because you let it.

Leash walking in our house is a job. It is not play time. It is not the dog's time. The dog's job, starting the day it is leash broken, is to walk next to me and always keep one eye on anything I might do or want to do. Failure to focus has logical consequences (like I might turn, dog doesn't notice and gets a collar correction because it naturally lagged).

To that end, the puppy should always be on your left side (no crossing in front or behind). You are walking. If the puppy tries to stop, keep going. DON'T LOOK BACK! The slack in the leash will be take up and the puppy will get a pop/pull. When the puppy moves to catch up to you, keep walking but PRAISE PRAISE PRAISE and tell the puppy how smart it is. I like to bend down to offer a treat with my left hand. The puppy will learn really quickly that walking nicely with Mom = good and easy. Stopping = annoying collar correction that is uncomfortable.

BTW... Stanley Coren in his book The Intelligence of Dogs says that Poodles learn new tasks in 1-3 repetitions.
 

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Nicely said Cbrand! Our pup would have never walked well and would have aweful leash manners if we let her roam for the first few weeks... Poodles have a nice way of training YOU if you don't train them from day 1 lol
 
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