It’s a Leash Thing

I think I may have the only dog who will not go to the bathroom outside unless they are attached to a leash.


Part of this might be my fault because I worry — almost to a fault — that Toby will take off after a squirrel or run through the middle of the street to see a neighbor, and the whole situation will end badly.

As a result, I rarely let him off his leash.

I first noticed the odd behavior at the dog park. While other dogs would just stop and do their business, Toby would come over and nudge me.

At first I thought he was trying to tell me he had enough, and wanted to leave. Then, he started doing the same beg he does when he wants to go out — putting his paws together like he is praying and a low growl.

I figured it was just a fluke thing. But it then I noticed it at home, too.

When I come in the door after being out for a while, Toby tends to get excited and pee while I’m putting his leash on. So, I started opening the door and taking him right outside to put it on, because if he pees outside, it’s not as much of an issue.

Several times I’ve tried — without a leash — taking him out to the grass and telling him to “hurry, hurry” (our command for him to do his business).

The first few times he stood there frozen until I put a leash on him. He gradually got better, and began circling, but still would not go until I put a leash on him — until today!

What kind of quirky habits does your dog have?

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