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How to begin your Dog or Puppy in weight pulling.

Weight pulling is a fun and enjoyable way to exercise and compete with your dog. There are some very

basic things you can do to develop your dog into a good weight puller. I like to begin harness introduction

at a very young age. At this point we are not doing any more than putting the harness on and playing with a tug. Just playing around and letting them wear it and get used to it being on. You can get small harnesses that go as a 12lb dog and will fit it up to about 30-33lbs. These are very inexpensive and are a great way to get going. You can also do this basic step if introducing a adult dog to his new weight pull harness. Once the pup/dog is comfortable wearing a harness we like to have them start pulling with something small and lightweight just to get used to a little tugging and begin to get the idea for what's going on.

After this you can have them pull a Plastic bottle (2 litre of milk ) half full of pebbles tied to a 15-20 ft

clothes line rope. Be sure to always have a leash on your dog. Just let them walk around and just keep the dog getting used to the tugging of the bottle and the noises it makes behind them. If your pup/dog is attacking or getting spooked by the bottle put it on a long line so the noises are quieter and further away. Once your dog has worn the harness and you have had a little fun it is time to get serious.

You must be sure to keep your dog leashed even a well trained pull dog will still use a leash on drag walks.

Once a pup gets around 6 months or so, time to start pulling a light chain or small cart. Keep telling it to

pull/work, whatever you want the dog to recognise when you want it to pull. Keep them walking if they go

to stop correct them with a tug on the leash and have them walk a little more and then allow them to stop.

The most important thing is to never set your dog up to fail, never let your dog fail and give it more weight

than it can handle. You will also figure out what keeps your dog/pup most interested in pulling. Keep doing

long walks as stated above with light weight being sure to give the dog its pull command and not allowing it

to stop unless it has been told to do so. Give them lots of praise while stopped and while pulling, treat them

if you are comfortable with food praise or a toy. The down side to using food praise or a toy is they are

always looking for the food or the toy.

Do a good week before moving on to the next phases. Make sure you take things slow and do not push

the dog , we want the dog to do best in the long run and not set it up to fail. Once your dog understands

its job you can start to add weight, just a few pounds at a time every other day. You want to slowly build

the dog up to pulling its body weight or with a growing pup gradually add weight as the pup grows.

Once your dog can handle dragging its own body weight for 20-30 yards at a time for an hour you can

begin shorter heavier pulls. When doing the shorter drag pulls only do this a couple times a week. Make

sure you make this fun for the dog.

Keep going over the basic command and keep the dog working when you want it to. You should do repeated

drags giving your dog breaks and allowing it to catch its breath. Always be sure when finished with a

training session that you always finish on a positive as with any training. Working your dog every other day

is a good way to keep a good training schedule for your dog. Every other time you will want to do long

drags versus the short pulls. Switching back and fourth will help keep it fun for the dog. keeping it fun is

one of the most important things of all.

yours in sport
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