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Bailey Boy~ Best Friend
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Discussion Starter #1
Hi~inviting any feedback from experience~

First, I've written before that Bello seems to be smack in the teenage stage. I'm going to talk to our trainer for some specific feedback. Over the last few weeks he has been his playful, yet testy, pushy self. Other times it's almost like he doesn't want to get up and go for a walk. Granted - he's been playing out in the snow (big walks/play). I've also increased training and boundaries so it wouldn't surprise me if he's a little tuckered...I think...Do 7 month olds have periods where they tucker out more but are more testy? He is unaltered at this time (contract says 10 months). Is some of this controlling behavior on his part?

Next is gentle leader question - we are using it and he really pushes against putting it on. snippy, backing up, etc. More than before he will lay on the floor once on. Sometimes he will also lay and not want to walk. If I have the right treats or toy he bounces right up. Any ideas? I'll have our trainer check how it's on again this week. Last week I had it a little too loose.

He's eating and drinking fine~
 

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My puppy Casper hated the Halti and I tossed it after five minutes. He was crushed. He wouldn't look at me for an hour. Really a failure on my part to not understand his willingness to work with me. (OK, so putting a lot of human reasoning on the dog.) So I got a Wonder Walker and that works great. He just tries to roll and rub it off now and then.

I put a Halti on my last golden and one minute later he trotted out for a walk, perfectly behaved on leash for the first time in his life. What a difference between the two!

Casper also has his quiet times. Not too many, as he's just five months. We definitely see couch potato in his future. He's had a few quiet times this week, but those are because his teeth are sore, loose, bleeding, and falling out. He lost a canine yesterday. I think instead of chewing on things to make them fall out, he mopes around. Then one falls out and he goes crazy running around and snapping at toys, leaving blood everywhere. Yuck, can't wait until this is over.
 

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Our Tucker is almost eight months, and he, too, is in his teenage phase. Recently he, too, seems to tire a little more easily and not be as excited to take the longer walks we used to take. I was chalking it up to maybe some of that early wild puppy energy calming a bit. But I might be wrong. We use an easy walk harness with him, and have been, from the beginning. He's always walked well, except for those times recently when he has wanted to play attack me on our walks (which I think I nipped in the bud with a little bitter apple spray). In so many ways, he is much more manageable than just a few weeks ago, but then all of a sudden he will pull a stunt that reminds us we can't let our guard down!
 

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Sometimes, despite doing everything right, your dog will just hate the gentle leader. Believe me! ;)

What many recommend is this...

Before actually using the gentle leader (GL) on a walk, you need to spend 10-14 days acclimating the dog to the GL. 1-2x a day, rapid fire delicious, high value treats to the dog in 30 second bursts while the dog just has the nose strap around his snout. Build up to putting the whole thing on with the quick fire of treats. Feed meals with the GL on. It's about building positive associations with the GL. Never yank or stop dramatically while the dog is wearing the head collar, it can hurt them.

I did all of these things and more and my boy still hides if I pull out the GL. I hated that feeling. We only used the GL as a crutch but he is at a hormonal age and we're back to it right now. Ugh. I hate it as much as he does!
 

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AAARF!
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I have no experience with the gentle leader, but I do wonder about his exercise. Maybe he gets a little cranky because he's tired? My 4-month-old is pretty high energy to me and he gets wilder and wilder and really wound up when he's extremely tired. Once I get him settled down and put him in his crate he falls asleep pretty quickly. I remember you talking about Bello in another thread and you stated that he is walked 30-40 minutes 4 times a day. Is there a possibility he's getting too much exercise? Finn started running in the house like a mad man last night and you would think he needed more exercise. Basically he just needed to go to bed!
 
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Bailey Boy~ Best Friend
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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks and keep the feedback coming!

The frequency of his walks has been not as consistent nor on average as long. I'm also in this nervous mom place~CC - I'm going to take your advice/suggestions~
 

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I am a big GL fan since I am old and have bad knees and could not walk a pulling dog without it. I second giving the treats while you put it on, feeding the dog with it on, and getting him/her used to it before you do the walks. The DVD which comes with it gives lots of good tips. Be sure you know how to fit it properly. The DVD shows, but you might also check with a trainer or someone who uses it. It has to be loose around the muzzle and tight over the back of the head.
 

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Shandy522
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I've never used the gentle leader but every dog I've seen wearing it looks absolutely miserable. So, we decided to try the easy walk harness for our 7 month old. We've had it less than a week and she does not like it and seems confused when we go out for walks. I've actually had a tough time getting her to walk anywhere with it on! It does work well though - when a neighbor walked by us, she simply sat down and watched, rather than yanking me down the sidewalk. It's also worked well in that when I switch the leash over to her collar she doesn't try to pull as much (knowing that I'll just attach it back to the harness if she does). My husband says it works well when he walks her, but I think we'll only use it for training purposes and then hopefully go back to the leash and collar.
 

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luverofpeanuts
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I tried the Easy Walk Harness too, since I wanted to avoid the Gentle Leader, since our previous dogs didn't care for it.

We've tried a few different harness types, and the Easy Walk has been pretty darn good. It doesn't annoy the pups, and allows a single walking human to control them without hurting their neck.
 

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Clare--Watney's mom
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I used the GL with our last dog because she was "over the top" when outside, especially at my daughter's games, but she hated it. She wanted to be with us all the time, so it allowed us to bring her to places we normally wouldn't because of her behavior. I wish I had spent more time with training her, but that is hindsight at this point. There are so many other options right now that I wish I had tried some of the other halters that others here have suggested.
 
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