Harness Desensitization Period

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Appa_valley
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Harness Desensitization Period

Post by Appa_valley » Fri Aug 13, 2010 6:42 pm

Hi all,
We will soon be getting my shepherd a Webmaster harness. Since he has never worn a harness before, is there a period of desensitizing that we should go through with him? What steps should we take? Thank you!!!!

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***Melissa***
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Re: Harness Desensitization Period

Post by ***Melissa*** » Mon Aug 16, 2010 5:55 am

*Bump*

Hopefully someone will answer you soon
There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face. ~Ben Williams

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Sabrina
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Re: Harness Desensitization Period

Post by Sabrina » Tue Aug 17, 2010 9:44 am

Hi! I'm no expert, but this is how I introduced my dachshund to wearing a harness: on the door mat (so that he knew he'd get to go outside!), I let him sniff the harness. Then I held a treat so that he had to put just his nose through the head hole. Lots of praise. He didn't seem bothered at all, so after a few more treats for putting his nose in, I slipped the harness over his head while he was eating a treat.

If your dog's worried about the harness - if it's washable, maybe you could wash it right away so it smells more like home than like the factory? Charley's the first dog I've walked with a harness (hey, maybe I am getting wiser as I get older! :lol: ) so I only know what I did with him. Maybe other folks will have other suggestions!

Jenna316
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Re: Harness Desensitization Period

Post by Jenna316 » Tue Aug 17, 2010 2:10 pm

I've used harnesses on my last three dogs and I just slipped them on and off we went. My dogs are pretty calm and laid back though. There really was no period of adjustment, they just accepted the harness without any problems. But if they had acted nervous or wary, I would have done much as Sabrina did and just taken it slow and steady with lots of treats along the way.

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Sabrina
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Re: Harness Desensitization Period

Post by Sabrina » Wed Aug 18, 2010 5:22 pm

I've been doing some TTouch work with Charley, and I came across the idea of using body wraps. There's a youtube video that's really good showing how to put one on http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=StKLh_lc93s . The book I have recommends leaving the wrap on for short periods of time and make sure the dog is supervised. I haven't tried one on Charley yet, but if your dog is hesitant about new things it looks like it would be worth a try, and it would probably help him get used to the feel of something around his body.

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Appa_valley
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Re: Harness Desensitization Period

Post by Appa_valley » Wed Aug 18, 2010 10:20 pm

Ah, thanks guys!!! I was thinking about doing something sort of like Sabrina was describing. I will definitely try that when we get the harness. Thank you!!!!! Hugs all around!!!!

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Mattie
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Re: Harness Desensitization Period

Post by Mattie » Thu Aug 19, 2010 9:03 am

Depending on the style of harness, they can work similar to a body wrap, the trail/tracking harness do this.
[url=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v312/Nethertumbleweed/PIXIE.jpg][img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v312/Nethertumbleweed/th_PIXIE.jpg[/img][/url]

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