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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sorry for putting 3 questions out there in one post but I figured that was better than cluttering the forum with 3 separate posts.

1. Leash training: Damon is 12 weeks old tomorrow; what is a good method to teach him not to pull on the leash when we go out, and when do we start? Right now he has a regular nylon collar and when we take him out, he pulls like mad. Is it too early to start on leash training and if not, what do you guys recommend?

2. When we take him out, on the leash or off leash in the backyard, he’ll eat anything and everything; grass, leaves, anything he can grab and chew. We try our best to keep an eye on him and to take the stuff out of his mouth before he chews/swallows but what can we do to discourage this behavior? I'm not that worried about grass but I am worried he may swallow something like a twig or rock.

3. And last but not least...shag carpeting. Damon has become very interested in our shag carpet :(. He’ll sniff areas and then try to bite/rip the carpet. I had a German Shepherd many years ago who did this and ended up ripping an entire section of the carpet up and since we just recently paid almost $3,000 to have our house recarpeted, Damon using the carpet as his personal toy is NOT an option. We watch him whenever he’s out of his crate but as many of you know, it only takes a few seconds for a pup to do some serious damage.

Thanks!
 

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You can't kill the metal
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its never to early to start training..
check youtube for Kikopup. She has lot of great videos on how to leash train with a clicker. if you don't have a clicker I'm sure you can use other markers.

I'll copy and paste some info I took from another source, I forget where I got it from...
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"First, get a twelve to fifteen foot lead (not a retractable one, they have no control, the cord can cut your hands if you have to manually get the dog back to you in an emergency and you want something that remains loose). You can even use a light piece of cording for toy breeds. Second, get a lot of treats that the dog cannot resist and use them ONLY for training. Third, go to an area with very limited distractions. The more things going on, the less interesting you will be and the more likely the dog will be to lunge. Working in an area with too many things going on often leads to human frustration and too many corrections. The less going on when first starting to train any new behavior or desired manners, the better for the dog. He will be more likely to focus on you and not the ball game going on across the field or the joggers or the bikers, etc.

Leash up the dog and give a happy “Let’s Go!” and start walking. If the dog goes in one direction, you walk in the opposite direction and SAY NOTHING. You need to TURN OFF. You do not want to follow the dog as this puts him in charge of the walk and in charge of you. When you feel the lead go taught, stop and walk towards the dog. If he starts to walk away, silently go in another direction. When you come up to the dog or the dog decides to follow you and gets right where you want him TURN ON, pay attention to him, give some treats and change direction. If the dog follows you, pay attention to him. The moment he starts to walk away, turn off and get boring. If the dog walks up to you or even accidentally hits the spot you want him in (like he is just walking past you), turn on, give treats, talk to him happily and get fun. When he turns away, turn off. If he walks away from you, change direction. If you feel the lead get taught, turn and walk towards the dog. What you are doing is using the dog’s natural desire for fun things to teach him fun and good happens when he is walking next to you. When he walks away, things get boring. He has the length of the lead to decide to walk away or return to you before it gets tight (he self-corrects when he makes the right decision, your turning towards him give him a chance to make a decision that will get him something good). There is no leash yanking, dragging, yelling, no prong collars, etc., this can be done on a flat buckle collar or martingale (“greyhound collar) and should be as you are not trying to correct the dog into walking with you on a loose lead but giving him incentive to learn proper leash manners.

When he is good at this with limited distractions, gradually increase the distractions. Remember, the more distractions, the harder you have to work to be more interesting than the rest of the world. You are allowing the dog to learn leash manners without punitive methods. The dog learns that when he is near you, good things happen. When he is away, you shut off. No punishing, he just gets nothing.

Most dogs love attention and will do what they need to in order to get it. Practice this on long leads and your regular lead (regardless of the leash length, the concept is the same). If your dog starts pulling, turn off, walk in the other direction and turn on only when he is where you want him."

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As for the rest, I'm not entirelly sure, he's still a young pup wanting to examine everything, grass and leaves I wouldn't be to worried about personally and you can't stop him from eating everything, eventually something will go down the hatch.

I had an area rug that I took right off the floor when I got Lexi. I would keep him under supervision all the time and make sure he's only chewing on her toys etc. Or, remove the rug which removes the worries!

Hard wood floors are better anyway ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply...maybe I'm worrying too much but aside from a German Shepherd that I had many years ago, I've never felt this close to any of my dogs. As bad as he can be at times, this little guy has really grown on me, especially how he's "picked" me. Which is odd, considering that my wife is home with him while I'm at work. Our other dogs and past dogs we've owned usually bonded with my wife for just that reason but Damon, for whatever reason, has decided that for now, I'm his human LOL
 
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