One of the most exciting activities for you and your puppy will be to go on walks and explore the world together. As soon as your puppy’s been vaccinated, you’ll both be keen to set out on walks together. Regular walks help your puppy become a well-balanced dog and provide a great source of exercise for you, provided your puppy follows your lead and learns to remain calm.
Once your puppy’s vaccinationsare complete, you’ll both be keen to get out and about for your first of many walks together. Remember, they still need puppy care, so keep walks short and not too energetic at this stage. If you have a friend with a calm, friendly dog, it is a great idea to go together so that your puppy can learn by example. Allow them to meet and play with friendly dogs but always be watchful – not all dogs have learnt to socialise with puppies.
Is “lead training” necessary?
Walking on a lead is an important skill for your new puppy to learn. When you first take them out with so many distractions and only their basic training complete, it is vital for you to be sure you can keep them safe by your side. Even as a well-trained, adult dog, there will be situations when you need to put them on a lead and if they get used to it now, they will behave well on the lead later on.
The 4-step program to successful lead walking!
Teach your puppy to remain calm
Next, get your puppy used to the idea of being restrained by the collar or harness. Hold the collar and gently steady the puppy with the other hand so that they cannot wriggle. Wait until they stand nice and still before you give them lots of praise and release them. Practice this often, ignoring any wriggling, and they will soon learn to wait calmly if you are holding the collar.
You can then attach the lead again, just playing at first so that they are happy with this new idea. Then start to hold the lead, keeping still, and praise them whenever they return to you. Make sure you only finish and release them when they are with you, so that they don’t learn to pull on the lead.
The first few times that you walk your puppy on the lead out of the house, remember that you may need to stop regularly to remind them not to pull, so don’t plan to go too far! But if you are patient, practice regularly, and are always consistent, it won’t be long before your puppy is a delightful walking dog.