Friday, May 5, 2017

How to Train an Old Alpha Chihuahua on a Leash

The best time to train a dog on a leash is when it is a puppy. Sometimes, people have fenced yards and don't anticipate needing to leash-walk their dogs. Since Chihuahuas are small, occasionally they are coddled and carried so much that they never learn to walk on leashes. It's not impossible, but it will take considerable effort to resolve this when the dog is older. This is especially true when the Chihuahua has been allowed to become the alpha dog, or leader. You might want to consider training the dog that you are the leader, as well as leash training. The Humane Society of the United States Nothing in Life Is Free program is excellent for alpha dogs.



    Take your Chihuahua to the veterinarian for a thorough examination, including the back, neck, legs and joints. This breed is prone to leg and back problems, especially in older dogs. These ailments can be exacerbated by pulling on a collar or leash. Let the vet know that you intend to begin a leash-training program, so that you can be informed of any cautions specific to your dog.


    Attach the leash to the Chihuahua's collar and let it drag it around the house if the dog is afraid of it. Closely supervise this training session so the leash doesn't get caught on something and strangle or frighten the dog. Pet the dog and offer it treats while it is wearing the collar and leash and not panicking. Do not reward hysteria by giving the dog treats while it is scared or fighting the leash.


    Take the dog for very short walks, using lots of encouragement such as verbal praise, treats and petting. Kneel down if the dog balks, and encourage it to come toward you. Reward any forward movement with a treat. Do not yank, drag or pull your dog.

    Regular harnesses increase pulling behavior.
    Regular harnesses increase pulling behavior.

    Consider using a no-pull harness instead of a neck collar. Harnesses are safer for dogs with back, neck or leg problems. Most harnesses encourage a dog to pull harder, but some special harnesses are designed to discourage pulling.

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