Keeping your puppy on a leash in the house is also known as umbilical cord house training. This type of training is excellent for puppies who are struggling with potty training. When you see the signs your puppy is about to potty, gently pull on the leash and lead them outside.
The power of routine and repetition is one of the best training tools for puppies. The more you can make your puppy go potty outside, the quicker they’ll learn that’s where they are supposed to go. The more they do an action in a specific spot, the more it will become a habit.
Using The Leash For Potty Training
The primary purpose for keeping your dog on a leash in the house is to help with potty training. Below are a few tips and tricks that can help speed up the potty training process.
It’s important to be attentive to your dog while they’re on the leash. As you spend time with your puppy, you’ll begin learning the physical signs they give when they need to go to the bathroom.
Once you see those signs, take your dog outside. Don’t wait until it’s too late. Puppies don’t have great control over their bladder, so accidents can happen quickly! The last thing you want is for them to re-enforce their habit of going to the bathroom inside.
Take Them to One Spot
Although this is not required, it will make cleaning up after your dog much easier in the future. Instead of letting your dog “explore” where they want to go to the bathroom outside, have a specific spot for them. As you take them outside, take them to that exact spot every time.
By doing this, you’ll train your dog to go in that exact spot in the future. This makes life much easier when cleaning up after them. You don’t have to worry about dog poop all over the lawn, you’ll know you just have to clean one spot.
Reward Them With Love
Just because your dog is on a leash and was forced outside doesn’t mean they shouldn’t get rewarded with lots of love (and treats every once in a while). By showing your puppy positive attention when they go to the bathroom outside, they’ll quickly learn they get rewarded when they go outside and punished when they go inside.
Using The Leash For More Than Potty Training
Most people assume that keeping a puppy on the leash while in the house is for potty training, but you can also use this technique for other training purposes.
Teaching Dogs The Basics
For hyperactive dogs (or those who do not have long attention spans), it’s helpful to keep them leashed when teaching them a new trick, such as “sit”. The leash will keep the dog at your side which will help prevent them from getting distracted.
Treats are great incentives for holding their attention, but they can eventually lose their appeal. Coupling those goodies with the practice of keeping your dog by your side will help the dog keep their attention on you.
Prevents Possible Disasters
Keeping a puppy on the leash also helps mitigate possible disasters around the house. The dog will be less likely to get themselves into trouble and will be by your side so you don’t have to worry about what they might chew on or mess up.
Indoor Leash Training Can Help With Outdoor Walks
If you’ve tried taking your puppy on walks outside but they either refuse to walk on the leash or pull the entire time, you may want to start by taking them on walks in the house before taking them on walks outside.
Walking them around the house while leashed offers both of you a low-risk situation where you can work together to get comfortable walking around without any issues. Once they’ve mastered walking by your side with the leash on in the house, then you can put it to the test by taking your pup outside.
Important – Be Consistent With The Leash
Dogs are creatures of habit, so the more consistent you can keep to a schedule, the better the training will go.
Decide whether you want to keep the leash on in the house at all times or just at night when you sit down to watch television or eat dinner.
Consistency is useful because the dog knows when to expect this restraint and will be more likely to accept it. Sporadically using this as a training tool once a month or every couple weeks may confuse your dog. Puppies need consistency in the same ways humans do.
Keeping An Eye On Your Dog While On The Leash
If you’re going to tie your dog down using a leash, it’s important to keep an eye on them for two reasons.
First, they risk getting tangled up and possibly choking.
Second, you don’t want them to develop bad habits (such as chewing the leash) while you’re not looking.
If they develop the habit of chewing on the leash, this might make it harder to take them on walks since they will view the leash as a toy.
What Leash Should You Use?
When keeping your dog on a leash in the house, choosing the right leash is important. If the intent is to keep a new puppy out of trouble, a leash around six feet might be the best option.
This length offers flexibility as the dog can still explore the space without wandering off and getting into trouble.
You can slowly begin increasing the size of the leash once you learn how your dog responds to the six feet of freedom. If the training is going well and they aren’t causing too much trouble, consider extending it by a foot or two at a time.
Puppies That Refuse The Leash
If you’ve rescued a dog from a shelter or are dealing with an anxious puppy, they might be timid or outright opposed to your attempts at leashing them.
If the pup tries to escape or prevents you from leashing them, try to get them used to the leash by letting them sniff it and even play with it before attaching it to their collar. As they approach the leash, give them a treat. This will cause them to associate the leash as a good thing, not something to be afraid of.
There are many benefits to putting a leash on your dog while in the house. It will help with potty training, leash training, and basic obedience such as sit and stay.
Remember, your dog should never see the leash as a tool of punishment, so don’t just put on the leash when they get in trouble.
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