Welcome back! So now you have your equipment chosen, your pugs favourite treat & an eager pug following your every move for a treat, you are ready to continue your pug training with teaching your pug to walk on a loose lead.

Now it’s time to get them to focus!

If you have a pug that goes crazy at the sound or sight of the lead & you have to wrestle them around the floor to get their lead on, you have already lost your dog before you have gotten to your front door.
We want your pug cool calm & collected whilst you attach your lead & I am going to teach you how!

Collar Holds

The first step towards keeping your Pug calm is exactly that, the first step, putting your lead on your Pug calmly.

Step 1: Touching the collar

  • Offer your Pug a treat to show them what they are working for
    Slowly extend your hand towards your dogs collar, stopping about 3inches short.
    NOTE: Do not extend the hand that has had the food in it as your Pug will inevitably go towards that hand.
  • Wait till your dog ignores your hand & looks at you, say good & give a treat with the other hand.
  • Continue this until your pug is confidently ignoring your hand.
  • From there you can progress to touching the collar gently & reward when your hand is ignored. If your Pug leans/moves away from your hand then you have progressed too soon

Step 2: Grabbing the collar & attaching the lead

After your Pug is confidently letting you touch the collar you can progress to grabbing it. If your Pug is comfortable slide the collar around the neck & reward calm behaviour.
Repeat the above but have the lead in your hand & raise this towards the collar.
Once your Pug is comfortable with this, repeat but click the clip on the lead once or twice.
Once your dog is completely comfortable with the above attach the lead.

The same applies for a harness, you just have to reach that little bit further.

Now you have your pug dressed & ready to go, you are then ready to face the next challenge, getting your pug calmly out the door.

Imagine having your pug walk calmly to the front door & sitting whilst you exit the door & calmly waiting whilst you lock it. Well don’t just imagine in the next two steps you will have your Pug baby doing just that.

Focus Practice

Focus practice is a great exercise, for many reasons. For this program we will be using it to teach your pug to look to you for direction & maintain focus for when you are out & about.

How to

  • Invite your dog to train by offering it a treat & showing your pug what they are working for.
  • Ask your dog to sit then reward.
  • Lean forward, bending at the waist & take two steps in any direction inviting your dog to follow by dropping your hand low & then straighten.
  • Reward when they follow you.
  • If they do not automatically sit, also then ask them to sit & reward.
    Repeat this in any direction around your yard, when they are consistently following you increase the number of steps you take

Now for our final step before you are ready to venture out into the wide world with your perfectly behaved pug! Im sure you are wondering why all this is necessary, if your pug flies at the door & is pulling at the lead whilst you are trying to close the door is your Pug listening to you? The answer is no & it is much harder to regain your Pugs attention rather than hold it in the first place.

Door Focus
  • Invite your dog to train by offering it a treat & showing your pug what they are working for.
  • Start with your dog in the lounge room or a room a minimum of 10 steps away from the front door
  • Walk backwards towards the door with your pug in front of you – you in between the Pug & the door.
  • Walk 3 paces & then reward.
  • Continue this pattern till you get to the front door.
  • If your pug attempts to bypass you, stop & return to the original position, teaching your pug that if they want to do that then distance will be increased not decreased.
  • Once you are able to get your pug to the front door, ask them to sit & stay.
  • Open the front door, if your Pug stays then reward, if they do not then close the front door & repeat again once your Pug is calm & sitting again.
  • Once you can open the door ask them to stay & walk out the door, immediately return & reward.
  • After 2-3 times of the above, step out, wait & then ask them to come out & sit by using your this way.
  • Then ask them to stay whilst you lock up & can stand there for approximately 5-7 seconds before heading off.

The above exercise can be incredibly frustrating as there will be points where your pug will be confused as it is not routine & you will be frustrated at your pug, it will happen! If you become frustrated ask for a simple behaviour like sit, reward & end the session. Return & try again after a few hours or when you feel up to it & yes this may mean they miss their daily walk.

If you missed part one of how to teach your pug to walk on a loose lead, be sure to read it here.

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Bec Heaton

Bec Heaton

Dog Trainer at Dog Manners
Bec is a certified dog trainer and registered vet nurse. She believes all dogs are good dogs, they just need to learn some manners. Bec runs regular dog training sessions through her business Dog Manners across Sydney.