My lab loves to go for walks. The only problem is he whines and yips loudly for at least the first half of the walk. I know he is excited, but it is embarrassing and a bad habit. What can I do to curb this? Thanks for the help in advance.
Check out the sticky thread at the top of the training subforum on leaah reactive dogs. Don't let the reference to leash aggression turn you away, reactivity is a spectrum and over excitment part of it. Even if the barks and yips are not truly leash reactivity, the training basis is solid for general focus and calm.
I had a Jack Russell that screamed in delight at getting to go for a walk. Inside a week he learned to be quiet. If he started up I stopped whatever I was doing and waited for quiet. Learned this from one of Andrea Arden's book something about training and being lazy in the title.
Working with Bucky the brat as well. He bounces trying to get his head in the harness. I stop and wait until butt is on the floor. He bounces, harness goes away. Butt on floor and harness comes back. He is extremely persistent and I'm not going far enough with this, should not get as far as bouncing in the first place but I've got bigger issues with him and the bounce is pretty cute.