Mastiffs are incredible dogs. However, as incredible as they are they also come in an incredible size. If you have a Mastiff puppy and would like to walk him as he grows, you will absolutely need to leash train him. Some adult Mastiffs weigh well over 200 pounds and can overtake most of their owners quite easily. The way to avoid this from happening is to train your Mastiff how to walk on a leash properly. Leash training your Mastiff puppy will give him leash manners while he’s little, train him to stay with you with a loose leash rather than pulling you along, and teach him that you are in control even when a bunny crosses your path. He wants to play with you. He wants to spend time with you. You are his person, and he can't wait to follow your lead. Your Mastiff on a leash will draw attention and affection from others. Be prepared when you're out on walks, so he knows how to behave without becoming overly excited jumping up on people or knocking you over.
Leash train your Mastiff puppy as soon as possible. The younger and smaller your Mastiff is, the easier this will be. When you train your Mastiff puppy to properly walk on a leash, you should expect him to walk beside you in a 'heel' position, not pull on the leash, and even walk with a loose leash between you. If your adult Mastiff were to get away from you, oftentimes, the only thing you can do is let go and let him go. Proper leash training from an early age will stop this and keep him calm and by your side.
Mastiffs are large dogs. If you have a Mastiff puppy, be prepared for him to grow quickly. A Mastiff with a harness that connects the leash to the chest rather than the back is easier to control than a Mastiff with a leash and a collar. Your Mastiff is going to need to be entertained on these walks and encouraged to continue with training sessions. High-value treats are important to bring every single time you walk your Mastiff on a leash. Schedule your training sessions with few distractions. Over time, you can increase distractions.
I’m planning on getting a mastiff puppy very soon and I don’t know which size harness to get for her. You be only seen pictures so I don’t even know what size she would be. Any suggestions or help? Many thanks
Hello Sanaa, Without being able to measure pup or know her size I cannot give you an exact recommendation. Some pups will be bigger than others in the litter. I would recommend asking the breeder or rescue worker what her current weight is and to measure around the broadest part of her chest for you. With that measurement you can compare the width of that and her weight with the width of the chest strap on a harness in a store and the weight recommendation on that harness' label. Knowing those things I suggest purchasing the size that will fit right now when adjusted, but gives lots of room to adjust to make bigger as she grows. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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Mona has a lot of anxiety about car traffic and is very difficult to take for walks. I've only had her for less than 2 weeks but she seems to be getting worse. She will start pulling as soon as she is close to home and we start and stop one step at a time but she will continue to pull to get to the safety of home.
Hello Jeremy, Being so close to the road by the cars is probably a bit overwhelming for her. Help her get used to cars more gradually. Spend time near the road but at a distance where she seems more relaxed. Drop large treats for her to hunt in the grass (make sure the grass hasn't been sprayed with chemicals recently), play games with her while she is on a secure long leash, and practice fun training with lots of rewards. Essentially let the cars be background noise while she focuses on things that make her happy. When she is relaxed at the current distance, move your training session a couple of feet closer to the road (gauge how close by her body language and whether she seems tense or relaxed at certain distances). You want her to notice the cars at the distance but be able to stay calm. With practice, you should be able to work her closer to the road until you can practice this training on a normal leash on the sidewalk. At that point you can walk her down the sidewalk again. Practice heeling and sits with treats during your walks at that point, to help her learn to walk nicely but also to give her something other than the cars to focus on and help her feel relaxed and happy around the cars (because of the treats and training) Also, being on the side of you furthest from the cars will be easiest for her, so work on heeling on both your right and left sides, to give you options where to walk her until she is comfortable enough to consistently walk on the same side regardless of where cars are. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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i got him just teo days ago and my family members have a boxer and a pitbull and they get along fine but diesel the first time they met wasn’t too friendly i can we overcome that thanks
Hello Obet, I need a lot more details to help you answer that. Some adult dogs simply don't like being pestered by puppies, so if Teo is a puppy and was being a little to pushy it may have made Diesel nervous and might be something you could work through if Diesel was still gentle with his warning and moved away when pup got to be too much. If pup wasn't bothering Diesel and Diesel came over initiating aggression that is a lot more serious and will take a lot of work on your end to manage them safely. If Teo is an adult, I would need to evaluate them in person to see their body language, who is causing the largest issue, and the severity of the aggression. It could be something minor or it might be a big deal. Having a trainer who deals with behavior problems regularly and is very experienced with aggression evaluate them together would be the best thing. Look for someone who does private training and will come to your home. Sometimes a warning is not a big deal when dealt with correctly, and sometimes it's a sign of a serious issue. Even a phone consultation where you can send in a video of the dogs together ahead of time would help a bit to determine what's going on. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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At what age can I begin leash training?
Hello Jerri, You can begin right now at 7 weeks. With a young pup you will first just get pup used to dragging their leash around the house while you are there to supervise: Check out the article below to introduce the leash: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-your-puppy-to-accept-leash Once pup is no longer afraid of the leash you can teach following using the Treat Luring method from the article linked below. You can practice this method in your fenced in yard or even in your own home before pup has been vaccinated enough to walk in public places (you can carry pup places for socialization before that point - the ground where other animals have been is where the disease risk mostly is) - I am not a vet though. Treat Luring method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel You can even practice pup heeling some without the leash using the same concepts from the Treat Luring method - as long as you are in a safely enclosed area where pup can't wander off. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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On walks loose lead she tracks everywhere if on grass, on road or foot path not so bad,main problem if someone talks to her or me she goes into kangaroo mode and launches at them or the other dog, I have tried asking her to sit with treats she’s fine for 5 sec ( generous lol )
Walked on front clip harness. HELP 😩
Hello! You are doing everything right as far as using treats and asking her to sit. I am going to give you similar advice, but we are going to go back to the basics with this one. This will help her be more calm in the actual setting where she is around another dog or person. That way you will have a bit more control and she will listen to your commands. The first step is to reframe what an oncoming dog means to your dog. From a safe distance — your dog determines the distance, not you — have your leashed dog view another dog. As the new dog comes into view, drop a lot of enticing meat treats just in front of your dog’s nose. Ignore any hysterics for now, but back up and create more space if your dog is unwilling to eat. This part is hard for humans — I understand. It helps to see your dog’s behavior for what it most likely is: fear vs. disobedience. The training reinforcer MUST be a great one, such as real meat. It is critical that the appearance of the new dog causes meat to fall from the sky. When the other dog is out of your dog’s view, all treats stop. We want your dog to predict that other dogs near him means that YUMMY FOOD will appear! As you are reframing your dog’s opinion of seeing other leashed dogs, be careful where you take your dog, and be protective of what he is exposed to. One fight can create a reactive dog. Consider not walking your dog for 30 days as you reprogram his opinions of other dogs. Instead, sit on your front porch or in your garage with your dog on leash, and practice treating every time another dog comes into your dog’s line of sight. During this time, engage your dog’s mind with mind puzzles, obedience work, and fun stuff like games in the house or yard. You know you have made great progress when your dog sees another dog, and he turns his head away from the once-threatening dog and looks into your eyes, expecting a treat. Once your dog is looking at his (former) trigger and then looking expectantly up at you for a treat, you can begin to put this skill on cue. Tell the dog, to sit or "watch me" or whatever command you want to use for this exercise. Remember to go slowly. Give it a full month of consistent practice. Please let me know if you have any additional questions. Thanks for writing in!
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Hi, we are from Portugal. Here we don't have much information about the breed. I read as much as I can about in order to have more information as possible.
Our dog is a wonderfull boy, but I wish he could walk next to us with a loose leash. When we started to walk with him we use a collar, but then he start to pull harder as the time go by, and we bought a 'no-pull' harness. I must confess it was great, because that way he doesn't pull so hard. However I read that kind of harness injures his bones in the future. can you advice the right type of harness, or the right type of training?
The other thing - when we arrive, he is so happy that he jump on us. we would like to avoid that.
He is with us all the time, at the weekend when we go out, he always go with us, except when we go to work, but we go home at midle of the day, to lunch and walk with him.
Could you please help us?
Sorry for my english..
Hello! Thank you for all of the information. I am not a fan of the no pull harnesses that go around the chest area. I do like the no pull harness that goes over the nose. They are called a Gentle Leader here. I am sure you can find them online, if not in stores. That is an option to consider. I am also going to give you information on how to train loose leash walking, as well as some tips to help with jumping! Give the Command Choose a word or phrase that lets your dog know what is expected of it. Since this is not a formal "heel," something like "with me" or "let's go" works well. Start out on your walk with your dog at your side, give the cue word or phrase, and begin walking. Stop and Go When your dog pulls at the end of the leash, stop immediately and do not budge. Never allow your dog to move forward when it is pulling or lunging. This way, you are teaching your dog that the only way to get where it wants to go is by leaving some slack in the leash. As soon as there is some slack in the leash, you can begin again. Give your dog the command "with me" and start moving forward. If your dog seems relentless about pulling on the leash even when you stop, try changing directions instead. You may find yourself turning in circles at first, but soon your dog will learn that it's not going anywhere if it pulls. It will learn to pay attention to you to figure out which way to go. Make It Rewarding Once you step out of your house, you have a lot of competition for your dog's attention. You have to make staying close to you more rewarding and fun than running off to explore all the sights and smells of your neighborhood. For this, you can use treats, praise, and a happy tone of voice. To start, any time your dog turns and looks at you, praise it and offer a treat. This is also a good time to use a clicker if you have decided to try clicker training. When your dog's attention turns to you, click and treat. In this way, you are teaching your dog that it is rewarding to pay attention to you. You can also speak to your dog in a high, happy tone to keep its attention on you. You may need to use a lot of treats in the beginning to get your dog's attention. Keep your hand by your side and give it treats continuously, as long as it is walking near you with some slack in the leash. As your dog gets the idea of what you expect, you can slowly phase out the treats by waiting longer between treats. Problems and Proofing Behavior Leash training can take time; you will probably not have your dog walking on a loose leash the first time. There may be times when you simply cannot get your dog's attention. It might find what's going on elsewhere more interesting than your treats or happy talk, and stopping and starting may not be enough to distract it from whatever is holding its attention. In this case, it's best to move away from the distraction. Walk in the opposite direction, saying "let's go." There's no need to pull your dog; simply walk away while holding the leash. Your dog will have no choice but to follow. Once it is walking with you, offer a treat and plenty of praise. To "proof" your dog's ability to walk on a loose leash, take frequent short walks, varying your routine and direction. Once your dog is comfortable with your local neighborhood, practice loose-leash walking in locations where distractions are likely. Be consistent and positive. In time, your dog will learn how to walk properly on the leash. Jumping: Teach your dog that they receive no attention for jumping on you or anyone else. Teach your dog to do something that is incompatible with jumping up, such as sitting. They can't sit and jump up at the same time. If they are not sitting, they get no attention. It is important to be consistent. Everyone in your family must follow the training program all the time. You can't let your dog jump on people in some circumstances, but not others. Training techniques: When your dog… Jumps on other people: Ask a family member or friend to assist with training. Your assistant must be someone your dog likes and wants to greet. Your dog should never be forced to greet someone who scares them. Give your dog the "sit" command. (This exercise assumes your dog already knows how to "sit.") The greeter approaches you and your dog. If your dog stands up, the greeter immediately turns and walks away. Ask your dog to "sit," and have the greeter approach again. Keep repeating until your dog remains seated as the greeter approaches. If your dog does remain seated, the greeter can give your dog a treat as a reward. When you encounter someone while out walking your dog, you must manage the situation and train your dog at the same time. Stop the person from approaching by telling them you don't want your dog to jump. Hand the person a treat. Ask your dog to "sit." Tell the person they can pet your dog and give them the treat as long as your dog remains seated. Some people will tell you they don't mind if your dog jumps on them, especially if your dog is small and fluffy or a puppy. But you should mind. Remember you need to be consistent in training. If you don't want your dog to jump on people, stick to your training and don't make exceptions. Jumps on you when you come in the door: Keep greetings quiet and low-key. If your dog jumps on you, ignore them. Turn and go out the door. Try again. You may have to come in and go out dozens of times before your dog learns they only gets your attention when they keep all four feet on the floor. Jumps on you when you're sitting: If you are sitting and your dog jumps up on you, stand up. Don't talk to your dog or push them away. Just ignore them until all four feet are on the ground. Please let me know if you have additional questions. Thank you for writing in!
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Mr Heckles is very easy to train and he loves new challenges, however, I have difficulty in keeping his focus when we’re out walking, he’s a strong boy and when he sees people and other dogs he just gets so excited and I struggle to hold him back, we’ve worked out his comfort zone, which is around 80yrds, any nearer and it’s mayhem, can I just add that there is not one ounce of aggression in him, it’s just pure excitement and he wants to play and be fussed, however the petrified look on other dog owners faces is actually getting a little uncomfortable, I walk him very early and as late as possible at the moment so as to minimise other people, any advice would be appreciated
Hi! I love his name! I am not sure if you have tried to engage him in training commands while he is in this state of excitement, but that is my suggestion. The first step is to reframe what an oncoming dog (or people) means to your dog. From a safe distance — your dog determines the distance, not you — have your leashed dog view another dog. As the new dog comes into view, drop a lot of enticing meat treats just in front of your dog’s nose. Ignore any hysterics for now, but back up and create more space if your dog is unwilling to eat. The training reinforcer MUST be a great one, such as real meat. It is critical that the appearance of the new dog causes meat to fall from the sky. When the other dog is out of your dog’s view, all treats stop. We want your dog to predict that other dogs near him means that YUMMY FOOD will appear! And this leads us to our next step which is putting a command to this. Consider not walking your dog for 30 days as you reprogram his opinions of other dogs. Instead, sit on your front porch or in your garage with your dog on leash, and practice treating every time another dog comes into your dog’s line of sight. During this time, engage your dog’s mind with mind puzzles, obedience work, and fun stuff like games in the house or yard. You know you have made great progress when your dog sees another dog, and he turns his head away from the exciting dog and looks into your eyes, expecting a treat. Once your dog is looking at his (former) trigger and then looking expectantly up at you for a treat, you can begin to put this skill on cue. Tell the dog, "sit" or "watch me" or whatever command you want to use for this setting. After he starts automatically sitting or watching you when he sees another dog, you know you have success! Remember to go slowly! It could take up to a month or longer of consistent practice before you see an improvement with his behavior.
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