My 10 week old little boy doesn't like me putting his collar on! He's fine when it's on him and he's not especially afraid of it, but when I try to put it on or show it within reach he lunges for it thinking that it's a toy! Any ideas or advice to train out this behavior?
What may help is:
- don't tower over the dog and stand right in front of him or look him in the eye directly; sit on your hunches beside him, facing the same direction and be calm;
- offer the collar and a treat just in front of it, so he has an incentive to put his head forward into the collar.
Puppies love to sink their sharp little fangs into just about anything during this teething stage, including the hands and feet of their owners. In some cases it's like you've brought a snappy alligator into your home, instead of the cuddly little puppy you had hoped for.
At 10 weeks, he's using it as an excuse to play. Because sometimes getting a collar on fast is life or death, it's one of those I don't mess around with. Get a partner to help hold him, happy talk, put it on, say GOOD COLLAR, and treat. If no help, hold him firmly in your arms, same process.
Start working on basic commands. Sit, as wizard suggested, is critical. I have had 100 pound rotties so excited to go out that it would be a wrestling match except for the SIT command, lol. I have even taught them to put their noses in their collars for a reward. Make the game into complying and getting treated/praised so you replace "bite the collar" with something positive.
When my dogs were young they'd back away from their collars or scratch at them because they were new and scary. I don't keep collars on my dogs in the house because they play roughly and I don't want any accidents. When they DO see their collars it means walk time and they get so excited they shove their heads though on their own. When it's associated with something positive they quickly learn to love their collars!