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puppy carrying leash?

Dozer's Mom
May 10th, 2005, 12:23 PM
When I try to walk Dozer, he always tries to grab the leash in his mouth and walk with it in his mouth. Is this ok to let him do because I constantly tell him no and stop and wait for him to drop it. As soon as he starts walking, he does it again and this goes on and on. A 10 minute walk turns into a 45 minute walk!!! :eek: So I have never let him do it but I know if I did the walk would go much smoothly and quickly. Part of me just wants to let him do it but we start obedience school next week and I'm afraid they will tell me that's wrong. Does anyone else have this problem and really what's the harm in him doing it? We had a dog when we were younger and he used to do it and I didn't really see any big issues with it.

May 10th, 2005, 12:42 PM
We used a steel leash(chain) until she was older then we got a leather one, so she never started the habit ;)

May 10th, 2005, 01:03 PM
If this continues, your neighbours might think that your dog has quite the wardrobe of leashes rather than just being on leash #13. Our Eskimo did this - and still does with my husband. 3 of the leashes were of the guaranteed for life variety - didn't dare go back with #3. I now have a leather leash which only I use and works well - he has never tried to hold it in his mouth with me even once. With my husband - first time - that was the last time - I hid it. We bought a new nylon one a month ago - good quality - and sure enough - same spot is about to break. He will try and carry it in his mouth - and when being hooked up to his harness will grab it. Sadly(?) he has excellent teeth - really too big for his size and while he does not mean to chew the leash it happens. I have suggested to a couple of leash makers that they make a leash that is reinforced say about 1/3 up the leash itself with some sort of strong tubing - Kong like material - that might withstand this. In the meantime, a new nylon leash this weekend for my husband to use.

May 10th, 2005, 01:06 PM
I've heard that this is a dominance thing, like they are leading you. I've never really experienced it. The only times my dog does this is if she wants to go for a walk or if I just snapped her lead on and she carries it to the door for me!

The only problem that I can see is if you have to give your dog a correction, it becomes more difficult if he is carrying his leash in his mouth. You could end up hurting him.

Personally, I would not like my dog to carry her leash in her mouth. But, that is more because if she needs a correction I can do it safely if she is not carrying her leash.

Lucky Rescue
May 10th, 2005, 01:41 PM
This is NOT a "dominance thing", but a puppy thing.

You need to teach him to "drop it" or "out".

May 10th, 2005, 01:46 PM
I agree with Lucky,

Sam did this playfully when i first got him, we taught him "release" and he lets go[or drops whatever happens to be in his mouth]

it diddnt really bother me till he decided t hold the leash and do Tug of war, wich isnt appropriate for our walks, so we trained him not to do it and now he doesnt do it anymore at all

he has a rope toy for tug of war that he finds much more appealing


May 10th, 2005, 01:49 PM
Sometimes it is a dominance thing - the dog wants to take charge of the walk. Often it is an objection to being controlled on the walk. Mostly it is bad manners and potentially dangerous.
The leash is an extention of your hand - he should not be permitted to have his mouth on your hand like that.
Also, if you ever had a situation where you had to tie him up (an old lady fell in front of you and she frightened by him), he could easily think to chew through the leash and get loose and run into the road.
So we say no leash in the mouth. Every time he does it you say 'quit' in a firm, abrupt tone and send energy down the leash in a way to make him want to spit it out (do not break teeth). If he thinks this is a game then he doesn't respect you. Set him up for learning. Take 12-18" of leash between your hands and create slack in the leash. Offer it to him like a toy - "do you want this?" Just as he goes to put his mouth on it - snap the leash tight (startle) and say "leave it". Offer it again. Within 3-5 times he should turn his head away from the leash when you offer it, thinking "I know that trick and I am not falling for it again".

Lucky Rescue
May 10th, 2005, 01:58 PM
Tenderfoot, your advice is great as always. Just not sure if you know this is a 12 or 13 week old puppy we are talking about?

If you do know, just ignore this.:p

May 10th, 2005, 02:55 PM
Sorry, didn't know that.
Yes this is normal puppy behavior - he thinks the leash is a chew toy. However it is still very important to teach him good manners now. You want to think "would I allow this when he is full grown?" if not then why let him do it now?
I would start with much less intensity and see if that works first. Usually working on the 'leave it' or 'drop it' on other temptations in addition to the leash he will learn to respect you and your word.
If he is a super intense pup then the advice offered earlier might be neccessary.

May 10th, 2005, 03:30 PM
I wasn't aware that Dozer was a young puppy. I apologize.

Dozer's Mom
May 11th, 2005, 06:25 AM
Thanks for the advice...I haven't been allowing him to keep it in his mouth but he everytime he gets mad that I won't let him walk where he wants to, he puts in his mouth. Even if we're just walking and he sees it in front of his face even for a second, he will grab it and just hold it in his mouth while he walks. I always tell him 'drop it' and stop until he does drop it but like I said, this turns a ten minute venture outside into a 45 minute ordeal. Oh well, patience is the key right? He'll catch on eventually.

May 11th, 2005, 06:31 AM
We used a steel leash(chain) ;)

Wouldn't this work ?? I don't think a dog would want to bite a steel chain!

May 11th, 2005, 07:21 AM
Kenzie was doing this too. One spray with Bitter Apple and she hated it so much, never touched the leash again.

May 11th, 2005, 11:08 AM
LOL Zoe does this too! But when we are walking with Copper, she holds his leash!! It's so cute! I tell her to spit it out. And if she persists, I put a stick in her mouth and carry on. She'll walk forever with a stick in her mouth!!

May 11th, 2005, 09:56 PM
Blaze has his leash in his mouth before we are out the door and holds it the whole time we are walking. I see nothing wrong with him doing this, he loves to and always has something in his mouth ball, toys of some kind.

I know it's not dominance, manners are fine and no way is he dangerous. Blaze's behavior is never a problem, many people that we meet on the street thinks it's cute and to be honest I do aswell. :)

May 11th, 2005, 10:20 PM
You may have misunderstood me - I didn't mean it made the DOG dangerous - I meant it could be a danger TO the dog if he were to think he could chew on the leash and get loose and go into traffic.
It sounds like your dog is wonderful and you have done a great job, but under many circumstances allowing a dog to hold the leash can lead to bad behavior. Your dog seems to be an exception and that's great! :thumbs up

May 11th, 2005, 10:55 PM
You may have misunderstood me - I didn't mean it made the DOG dangerous - I meant it could be a danger TO the dog if he were to think he could chew on the leash and get loose and go into traffic.
It sounds like your dog is wonderful and you have done a great job, but under many circumstances allowing a dog to hold the leash can lead to bad behavior. Your dog seems to be an exception and that's great! :thumbs up

Sorry I did misunderstand you my fault, I did read it as it made the dog dangerous and knew in no way was this Blaze. We still use the same leash we started with as 8weeks old, Blaze is now 15mths. He holds the leash in his mouth but NEVER chews it. I do understand what you are sayong about dogs becoming loose and can get hurt, I agree.

May 13th, 2005, 05:33 PM
This is a "golden" thing too. Retrievers like to carry something. Champ would carry his leash (by the hard flexi-leash handle) to and from the door of the house.