Teaching a puppy to wear a leash in the house can be a great tool to get you started with teaching basic manners at home. Preventing unwanted behaviors is always more effective than teaching a pup who has already learned that misbehaving is lots of fun! Prevention of misbehavior does require that you think ahead and you’ve got to have your tools ready, especially the leash. Dogs are such soulful and intelligent creatures with an innate willingness to please. They are so eager to learn, so using the leash along with rewards such as treats and play will set you and your puppy up for success. 

Here are a few of my personal favorite reasons I like to use the leash that came to mind while raising our newest puppy English Labrador pup, Katey Grace. 

35 reasons to leave the leash on in the house:

  1. When it’s time to run for the door before an accident happens, you’ve got that leash!
  2. So you don’t have to get off the couch when the puppy is across the room chewing on the leather chair. 
  3. When your puppy is hanging off your oldest dog’s lip and a much-needed break is in order. 
  4. The leash creates a space for monitored play when it’s tied under a piece of furniture to create a safe area.
  5. When a visitor drops by, you’re ready!
  6. It’s there as a tool for teaching when you’re cooking in the kitchen.
  7. It’s there when it’s time for “place!” training when you’re teaching your pup to lay on their bed and chill out.
  8. Teaching fetch! Now the pup has to bring the ball back because you’re using the leash and a treat as a guide. 
  9. Great for boundary training when your pup isn’t allowed in certain rooms.
  10. That leash is there to assist when a puppy is jumping up on you.
  11. It’s there to assist with jumping up on furniture.
  12. It’s there to assist with jumping up on children.
  13. Right there to assist for jumping up on counters too!
  14. Grab it when the pup is crawling underneath in places where she shouldn’t be.
  15. Use it when you need training assistance with anything related to fear so you can walk away together and return on puppy time.
  16. Tie the leash under the leg of a chair in the kids rooms so you can keep a safe and close eye for prevention of misbehavior such as stealing the kids toys.
  17. Tie the leash under the leg of a chair in the master bedroom so you can keep a safe and close eye for prevention of misbehavior such as stealing laundry basket items. 
  18. Tie the leash under the leg of a chair in the living room so you can keep a safe and close eye for the prevention of misbehavior such as stealing the remote or magazines.
  19. Use an eye hook in the wall if you don’t want to use furniture with tether training and create safe areas in various places throughout the house.
  20. Be sure to have plenty of toys, appropriate chew items, and enrichment activities ready when using safe playtime with the leash.
  21. The leash is there to grab for safety if the puppy lunges toward a dropped pill, an important dropped paper on the floor or food they want to gobble up that they aren’t supposed to.
  22. The leash prevents door dashing. 
  23. The leash prevents running inside a closed glass door too! Katey slammed into the sliding door once – she’s quite graceful. 
  24. The leash keeps you from becoming a “collar grabber” and making your pup dislike your hands coming at them! Your hands should always mean love ❤️ 
  25. The leash is great for waiting on the “check in or focus,” when you are walking outside or crossing the street. This is for teaching the puppy to look at you for permission before crossing the street or walking outside the door.
  26. Teach which furniture in the house is fair game, and which isn’t by redirecting with a treat and the leash.
  27. Letting the puppy run around with the leash on in the house gets them used to it so they become more comfortable with leash walking outside when it’s time.
  28. The leash prevents stealing things that don’t belong to them like puppy shoes, socks, glasses and the remote. 
  29. The leash also prevents the game of chase which we all know puppies love. Especially when they take off with your shoes, socks, glasses or the remote!
  30. You can make being next to you rewarding, instead of being away from you more of a positive.
  31. You can put the leash around your waist and have the pup tag along with you for daily chores. This gets the puppy exposure to the home, sounds and movements of the washing machine, opening up a garbage bag in the kitchen, etc. and keeps you close by!
  32. Keeping the leash on, you can pop outside easily for very short introductions to the real world out there and introduce puppy to more noises, sights and smells.
  33. With the leash on, I never have to worry about what my puppy is doing. A less-stressed pet parent makes for a less stressed puppy!
  34. The leash serves to interrupt and redirect to toys that are appropriate and allowed. 
  35. Leash training strengthens the bond between you and your pup! “Come by me, settle and let’s cuddle!” 🐾

Note: Please keep in mind when leaving a leash on in the house, AKA, tether training, the leash is used for short periods of time and it’s never left on if the puppy is unattended. Also, I typically recommend this for pups who will soon be transitioning to more freedom with baby gates or a puppy pen in the house. This technique is used for about 14 days depending on the age of the puppy, the temperament and the circumstances. 

About the Author Christine Fox, APDT, CTDI and a Pet Sitters International member, is the founder of Wag ‘N’ Tails Dog Activity Center with two locations in Michigan. She has been involved with many pet dog trainer certification initiatives, all based on learning techniques that involve humane practices and the latest in scientific research. Christine also raised a service dog for Paws With a Cause and plans to train her newest pup in therapy work. Through her work with dogs and their parents, Christine has developed many happy and healthy relationships with both humans and dogs in the community.

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