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I usually start puppies out with a very light collar and a show type leash (also very light weight) AND I take them for their first walks, on leash, with one of the adult dogs--takes about two trips with an adult who knows about leashes and walks well on them and puppies catch on.

Having said that I retrained a very stubborn young male for a breeder friend who at nearly 5 months and over 50 pounds had decided he would simply lie down and not move if you put a leash on him. We had two very ugly sessions in a grassy area--I carried him out to it and put a leash on him (standard 6 foot obedience type leash that I almost never use for anything) I started forward and he made a mad dash the opposite direction and hit the end of the leash and lay down. I kept going--he shreiked like he was being murdered. I walked a good 12 feet before he decided I wasn't going to stop and he was going to be dragged (I had him on a flat collar--fitting so it couldn't slip off over his head) if he didn't get up--so he jumped to his feet and dashed here there and yonder--hitting the end of the leash multiple times. Through all of this I just kept walking--slowly and offering him a cookie--as I had been all along.

We made it down to the end of the grassy area (by this time I had an audience of all the stay at home moms in the neighborhood) and I made a u-turn and started back the other direction. At that point he threw himself on the ground again and got dragged about 15 feet more for his efforts--at that point he was yelping everytime he hit the end of the leash and screaming when he was being dragged. I kept walking with the treats and calling him. He finally got up and ran up to me--it was like a light turned on--he ate the cookie--said "Oh, if I stay here you won't pull on me?".

We walked up and down the grassy area twice more. The audience abandoned up because nothing exciting was happening. The puppy got a lot more cookies and we walked home.

He never tried to lay down on leash again and it evidently did him no lasting harm as he was the first puppy to get an Obedience title from that litter--his eventual owner said he was the easiest dog she ever trained when it came to heeling.

This is NOT a technique that I generally recommend--but several people had been trying to get that puppy to get up off the ground and stop screaming about the leash for three months by the time I did that and he'd leaned the lesson very well that if he layed down, didn't move and screamed he'd won.

I would never do it with a puppy as young as yours.

RM (Bug) Russell
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