My puppy doesn't like going on walks???

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My puppy doesn't like going on walks???

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Old 08-02-2012, 08:32 AM
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My puppy doesn't like going on walks???

Hi everyone,

I have an adorable 13-week-old Border Terrier puppy. He's a sweetheart, loves to lie in my lap and be petted, or run around chasing his chew toy. He sleeps wonderfully through the night in his crate, and is starting to get used to me leaving him alone for short periods of time, although he does still panic a bit sometimes when he can't see me. He is also really good on a leash, he doesn't pull, although he does start and stop often to sniff things, which I expect of such a young puppy.

However, in the past few days, I've found that he doesn't want to go on walks. He'll go out the door, pee, get his treat, and then just want to lie down and not go any further. I can coax him to go a bit further, but he'll constantly want to stop and lie down. I have been taking him on walks with me to the grocery store and so forth--it's too far for him, so I would pick him up and put him in my backpack when he got tired, which he seems to enjoy. However, I think he figured out that if he just lies down, then I'll carry him, and he won't have to walk anywhere.

This morning, I tried giving him his breakfast while we were walking as a reward for walking next to me, but it was still very start and stop, and I think I was just reinforcing the fact that if he lies down, then I'll bribe him with a treat, he'll walk with me a few steps, and then lie down again. I've tried using the clicker and clicking and treating every time he walks with me for more than 3 seconds, but again, it just seems to reinforce the stopping, since he stops as soon as he gets his treat. I've also tried just leaving, when we're indoors and walking on a leash, and he'll follow me sometimes, or sometimes he'll just stay there lying down. I can't try that while we're out on the street, though, since we're near a road.

He definitely isn't too tired to walk, though, because as we go inside, he'll start getting more and more excited, and will literally be running circles around me and want to play as soon as we go in! He gets at least 2 30-45 min play sessions with me every day, and we go on 4 short walks (just 2 sides of the block, 5 minutes) and 2 longer walks each day. He went to the vet yesterday, and is perfectly healthy. Why do you guys think he doesn't want to go on walks? What can I do to get him to walk with me? Maybe the problem is that he's very shy, and doesn't like the noise of the cars and so forth outside? He still refuses to walk on quiet streets, and at night, though.
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Old 08-02-2012, 08:36 AM
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Is it hot outside? Is the Pavement hot?
Is it possible something frightening happened out there?
Is he not feeling well?

It's possible he is going through a fear period and the big world is just too much right now.
I would back off for a bit and keep socializing him but at a less intense level.
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Old 08-02-2012, 08:54 AM
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Nope, not hot outside, this has been happening in the early morning and the evening when it's fairly cool, as well as in the afternoon. I've been checking the pavement with my hand whenever I take him out and it's hot, and just trying to take him for a very brief walk.

He could be scared of the cars and loud noises, but that doesn't explain why he still doesn't want to walk when there aren't any cars around. Also, he was perfectly happy to walk in the same area a few days ago.

I think he feels all right, he's eating well, and just got a vet checkup, and seems to be well enough to play chase for 15 min +.

I don't know that backing off is much of an option -- he really needs to go out to pee, and the door we go out of isn't the same one we can go in through, so he really needs to walk those 50 steps or so. He's definitely physically capable of walking that distance, so I don't see why he shouldn't want to, especially when it's cool and quiet, and he's with me. He is naturally curious and likes to sniff new things around the block, so he does have an incentive to follow me, but that doesn't seem to be strong enough anymore.
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Old 08-02-2012, 08:58 AM
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It still sounds to me like something scary has happened out there. If he has been frightened by cars going by, he will associate that LOCATION with fear. It is not necessary for a car to be there at the time.
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Old 08-02-2012, 09:00 AM
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I would do everything you can think of to make his potty area positive, including giving him tasty treats, playing with his favorite toys, sitting with him on your lap while he chews a delicious chew toy, etc.
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Old 08-02-2012, 09:10 AM
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You know what, actually, that's a good point! I hadn't thought of that. I think he became less keen on it when I took him out to pee one day when it was raining, and we stood outside in the rain for 10 minutes or so. He was unhappy, but I didn't know what else to do, since there aren't any covered areas where he can pee. He actually didn't end up peeing, and I ended up calling it a night and putting him in his crate, and waking up earlier to take him out the next morning. I think he got scared, and was whining a lot, and generally pretty unhappy with being wet, even though I dried him off afterwards. I don't know how to make it a positive experience for him when it's raining out, since he does need to go out, even if he doesn't like getting wet. He also won't go on the puppy pee pads, even if I'm standing next to him for half an hour and I know he has to pee, he's a little too perfectly house trained, haha. At some point, it'll rain for long enough that he'll have to pee in the rain--what can I do so he's not so freaked out by it?
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Old 08-02-2012, 09:14 AM
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Most puppies do not like the rain and all our puppies have had similar problems peeing when it's wet out.

You can try holding an umbrella over him. You can try taking him out several times for just s few minutes each time. sometimes this works.

The good news is they seem to outgrow this stage.
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Old 08-03-2012, 07:28 PM
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Just wanted to let you guys that it's getting better, I have been playing with him outside and giving him a lot of treats, as well as practicing walking on a leash outside with the clicker and treats in a small courtyard garden that doesn't have loud noises and trucks rumbling by. He's still somewhat hesitant when walking near the road, but he can be coaxed to walk slowly, and we're working on it
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Old 08-03-2012, 07:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iamanorange View Post
Just wanted to let you guys that it's getting better, I have been playing with him outside and giving him a lot of treats, as well as practicing walking on a leash outside with the clicker and treats in a small courtyard garden that doesn't have loud noises and trucks rumbling by. He's still somewhat hesitant when walking near the road, but he can be coaxed to walk slowly, and we're working on it
That's awesome!
Sounds like you are getting this little guy figured out a bit better.

Puppies do go through fearful periods and hopefully with the careful handling you are doing now, he comes out of this phase more confident.
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Old 08-04-2012, 11:01 AM
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If it was the rain...the umbrella works for our dog. She even makes an effort to stand under it with you.
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