A training tether is a temporary management tool that can be used to prevent behavior problems or assist in resolving an existing problem. The idea is to tether your dog in the places where your family spends time, such as the kitchen, TV room, or living room, so he can be with you but doesn’t have to be the center of attention, and he can’t wander off and get into trouble.
Ideally A tether should be about 4 or 5 feet long and preferably made of plastic coated wire cable with a snap at both ends. The plastic coating protects furniture and the wire prevents the dog from chewing through it. Attach one end of the tether to a heavy piece of furniture, and the other end to your dog’s buckle collar.
Make the tethering spot a happy place by putting a comfy mat or bed there. Give your dog a reward as soon as he gets to the tethering place, then give him a special treat such as a chew toy or stuffed kong.
Start by putting your dog on the tether a few times a day for five to ten minutes while you settle down nearby to watch TV, read, etc. Slowly extend the length of time the dog is on the tether, but also vary the time, mixing short sessions with longer ones.
If the dog barks or whines while on the tether, leave the room until he is quiet. Then return and reward his quiet behavior. The idea is to ignore unacceptable behavior and reward calm behavior with quiet praise and/or a small, soft treat.
Rules for Using the Training Tether:
- Only put your dog on the training tether when you are around to supervise.
- Never leave a dog tethered when you are not at home.
- Use only a buckle collar with the training tether; never use a choke chain, slip lead, prong collar or head halter with the training tether.
- The training tether may also be used outdoors; for example, while you garden or have dinner on the patio, but only when someone is close by.
- The training tether area should be a pleasant and safe place for your dog.
- Never use it as punishment. Don’t allow children or other people to bother your dog when he is on the training tether.