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How do I get my puppy to stop trying to eat rocks on our walk?

asked 2016-06-28 21:05:55 -0500

Please help!!!! I have a almost 9 week old German Rottweiler puppy and she keeps trying to eat and chew on rocks and sticks on our walks. That is the only time she is doing it and I'm really worried because that's how my friends dog died. Also I need help with her pulling when she walks if anyone has suggestions! Please help!!

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answered 2016-06-29 08:10:28 -0500

Hi Brianna: Puppies! Oh my! In my experience, all puppies, just like babies, want to put everything into their mouths! Since she is only trying this on walks, you'll need to train her to walk with you...and this takes time and a lot of patience. I'm not a certified dog trainer, but I do know that you should let her potty right away (or before the walk). I would use a 6 foot leash and keep her close to you, but not so close that you step on her. [Retractable leashes should never be used when training the walk]. Start the walk by saying WALK, and walk on. Then when she starts to pull, say NO and then stop. Just stand there until she stops completely (perhaps you can work on the sit command at this time). Once she's stopped completely, reward her with a little treat and a lot of praise. Then start the walk again - you can say WALK before you start walking again so she gets the idea of what you want. At the beginning, you'll only be able to take a few steps before she starts pulling again, and when this happens, say NO and then stop and reward/praise her when she stops. You'll have to repeat this process several times until she gets it - that's where the patience is really needed. If you find she is too playful, try having some potty and play time before the walk so she can be more focused on her walking lesson. It takes a lot of time and practice to get the walk to your liking. Always practice a few times a day, more times per day when you have more time (like on weekends or time off of work), and this will get her walking nicely before you know it! If you need visual lessons on walking training, try searching on YouTube...there are several dog trainers with excellent videos for a variety of dog training/commands. You can also find some good basic dog training books at your local library. Good Luck!

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Omg that helped a lot! I will try everything you said! Those are really good tips and I really appreciate you giving me all the info you have:) I'll try it tonight on our walks. I take her on at least 2 30 min walks every day so hopefully with these tips she will be better in no time:)

Brianna M.'s profile imageBrianna M. ( 2016-06-29 11:06:15 -0500 )edit
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answered 2017-03-01 06:05:11 -0500

I completely understand your concerns. Eating rocks or any other sort of foreign object is a good way for them to catch a disease/parasite, or chip their teeth, but most concerning, it is a good way to get an abdominal obstruction which many times requires surgery.

Because of that, I will be very honest with you. Getting the pup to curb this habit is going to be a long tricky process that will require a lot of patience and training on your (and the owners) part. First and foremost, you must never leave her outside where they can reach the rocks unsupervised, and you must always be watchful while on walks. With that, it is important that you always have treats/toys or whatever the dog enjoys most. Every time she reaches for a rock, you will give your command (drop/leave/watch or whatever you would like) for them to leave the rock alone and instead focus on you. When they do this successfully, give them their prize and lots of praise. The key part, you must do this every single time. Puppies are very easy to train if you are doing it correctly, and most of them are easily trained away from bad habits with nothing but love and treats!

I know its tedious, but it is so important that you curb her behavior before it becomes permanent.

Best of luck!

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