This can be done at any time from eight weeks onwards. A tight-fitting collar and lead are required, rather than a slip lead which can be dangerous when the puppy suddenly pulls against it. Choose a day when you are feeling happy and relaxed, with plenty of time and patience for the puppy, rather than a stressful day when your temper may fray easily. Put the collar and lead on the puppy and carry the puppy to an open space where no injury will be caused when the youngster flies around. Praise the puppy throughout. The collar may have been rather a surprise – and worse is to follow. Try to persuade the puppy to follow, or come towards you. Food can be a good bribe. The puppy will probably lie like a starfish, pulling back against the lead, but may be persuaded to take a step or two towards you if you crouch down. Praise the puppy for every step taken.

At some stage the puppy will fly around like a fish on a line to try to escape from the collar or pull the lead from your hands. Both must he avoided. Play the puppy like a fish, and praise the youngster when this stage is abandoned and the puppy comes to you. Always finish on a positive note, with the puppy doing right and having been praised. Resist the temptation to do too much at one session. A puppy likes to show off to other dogs, so should he allowed to swagger on the lead past their run or kennel. Keep up the praise.

Do not attempt to take the dog out in traffic until properly lead trained and able to walk to heel on the lead without jerking or pulling. Walking beside an older dog on a lead can be a steadying influence, but practise this within the confines of the home.

(an extract from “Border Terriers Today” by kind permission of Anne Roslin-Williams)