Originally Posted By: CastlemaidHow old is the puppy? I allowed Falkor to chew and tug on the leash as a puppy. I figure walks should be fun. As he got older, we would play a bit, but stop and walk when I decided. He just stopped doing it around 9-10 months old. I either used cheap nylon leashes that were okay to chew up, or a good heavy-duty leather leash that held up to all his tugging and biting.
Just wanted to offer a different perspective. It all depends on what your expectations and goals are.
I do the same as Lucia. My puppy leashes (the ones I use on walks) look like heck. They're really rather embarrassing.
But my kids stop messing around with the leash when they're about 4-5 months old. Why? Because when they start chewing the leash, I just stop. I don't say a word. I don't get frustrated and sigh heavily. I just watch my little sweetie and enjoy his puppyhood. I think about the fact that they grow so quickly, and I try to really absorb the sweetness of the moment.
Suddenly, puppy realizes "hey, we're not going anywhere!"
At that point, he'll usually continue to hold the leash in his mouth, but he'll start walking. I speed up a bit, so the walk feels even more exciting, and I make sure that we hit several of the best sniff spots. Pretty soon, pup realizes that the only way to get the exciting walk is to stop messing around with the leash. And he does so on his own.
I never have to say a word.
ETA: I also use the same approach for teaching heeling when my pups are older. After they've been taught the basics of heeling, if my dogs pull, I just stop. So I think that this approach works perfectly for teaching polite walking. My kids learn that their behavior makes the walk continue. We can (and have) stood in the same spot for 10 minutes (when they're older). Ultimately, THEY control the walk. For me, it's a great lesson to learn, and the earlier, the better.