Walking your dog is a wonderful thing for any owner and their dog.
Table Of Contents
- How to teach a dog recall is a vital part of their training.
- Teaching Dog Recall
- How To Teach a Dog To Recall
- Recall Training: To help dogs that chase
Teaching Dog Recall is the real treat though and comes when your dog can be safely let off their leash for a well-deserved run-about.
How to teach a dog recall is a vital part of their training.
And in this article, We will go about explaining the steps you need to take to get the very best results when introducing this skill to your growing training skillset.
It’s great to see your dog running and showing off its athletic prowess. I myself have always owned Greyhounds and to see them running for fun is quite an amazing thing.
The importance of teaching recall to your dog is vital especially when you consider the hazards of letting your dog run free in the event that you can’t get them to come back.
Going back to previous articles and training tips that we have looked at, recall is something that needs to be learned at home, in your garden or yard if you have one but failing that, in a secured enclosed space.
I realize finding an enclosed secure space can be difficult but sometimes you can find a kindly landowner, farmer, or someone who has a larger space that you can approach to use.
I have done this in the past and as long as the area is secure and your dog can’t run off and you also make sure you clean up any doggy doos, then this could be an option for your training.
Also, try to make your training sessions free of distractions for your dog.
It is really difficult to get your dog to focus if it is a municipal park or an area where there are other dogs, noise or generally things that can shift your dog’s focus from you.
Teaching Dog Recall
Introducing Your Dog To Recall
A method I have used in the past is to let your dog get used to the area first of all as dogs are predators they will check out the entire area, looking for weak points and sniffing everywhere and this gets them adjusted well to the new surroundings.
After letting the dog get used to its new surroundings, I then put my dog back on the lead and continue to the next step.
Step One: Getting Your Dog To Stay
I use a long training lead like this one and it is very effective.
Loosen the leash and take a step back and say to your dog firmly STAY. Whilst raising your palm as if to say STOP, repeat the command STAY.
This is a case of persevering with this and if you have done this at home before, especially when you were learning the other training including getting your dog to come to you in the home.
The STAY command really does work and your dog will learn this…..especially when it is combined with the request to come to you that results in a reward, a tidbit.
Tidbits, food rewards are essential in this training as usual as you are trying to imprint the command and reward system for this new stage of their training.
Keep saying STAY and gradually move further back, one step at a time.
If your dog starts to move, then you need to go right back to the start and until your dog gets this message.
No rewards if they move, remember, YOU are in charge of this and the rules of this game must lay entirely with you at all times.
Once you have this particularly essential portion of your dog’s training, you can move on to step 2
Step 2:The Recall
When I have done this with my dogs I have always used my long training lead as it still gives me a chance to get at least a fighting chance of getting my dog back if they don’t come back.
It is 20 feet in length, plus my dog still feels like it has a lead on it and I have found that this has calmed them a small amount.
I loosen my grip and virtually release the lead and then tell my dog to STAY……I then reward with a treat.
I move away, one step at a time…..still saying STAY until I am about 10 to 15 feet away.
I then call my dog and they get a treat.
I then repeat but this time gradually getting further away.
Keep doing this until you can get about 30 feet away from your dog and again, this takes time and repetition to get this right, but if you do this kind of training it is an incredible way of building trust and that all-important bond.
Getting this right is essential to you enjoying all of your walks together and the fact that after your dog learning, fully understanding, and responding to the instruction, you will both be more confident on your daily walks.
This great video shows you a bit more and explains the whole recall process.
You can mix and match and find what works for you of course as it is always great to remember that all of our dogs are different, unique, and learn at their own pace.
That’s why it is so important to be calm, patient, and consistent in our approach to the training.
To keep the training regime rigid is not essential, you don’t have to do this every single day as it can quickly become boring for you and your dog and especially frustrating if you are finding it isn’t working that well at first.
Do this kind of training 3 or 4 times a week for 15 to 30 minutes only.
That way it is still fun and enjoyable for you both.
Try to keep a record of your successes too as this will help with getting your training speeds better too.
Try to record what works and what doesn’t and then you will be actually set down a blueprint that can be adjusted slightly for different situations.
It may take a few days to get your dog to get this off to a tee or it may take a few weeks, but your dog WILL get it eventually, I can certainly promise you that.
You just have to do your part which is essential.
Get this right and you never know, it may be you that your friends come to when they want their dog trained!
Recall Training: To help dogs that chase
This great video from Wood Green also explains a lot about teaching recall to dogs that have a bit more of a chase attitude built-in, dogs like Greyhounds, for instance.
It’s really well explained and there is a transcript below for your records, enjoy.
A training exercise for all dogs need to learn if they’re going to enjoy off-lead exercise is a recall.
And on the whole teaching, a dog or recall is relatively easy.
However, there are some breed types that love to chase. So, therefore, if they see a car, a jogger or a cyclist, then mother nature takes over, and they want to run off after that object.
There is an exercise that we work on here at Woodgreen, called the chase recall.
And I’m going to take you through the very basic elements of how to teach this exercise.
We need to ensure that training starts in a distraction-free area, we also need to make sure that the training sessions are short and sweet to the point and successful by starting your training sessions at the easiest levels.
You will build incrementally so that you’re gradually making it harder and harder, that you’re both aiming for success.
Before you start your training, there are some pieces of equipment that you need to have available to you.
First and foremost, you need to select a toy that you know your dog is really really, really going to enjoy.
Some dogs really, really enjoy playing with a rag and bouncing up and down and playing tug of war with you.
Others like to chase a ball. And that’s a really important part of this exercise, it is called to chase recall.
And sometimes to help get their attention and get them really excited about coming back to you, the use of the squeaky toy can come in really handy.
The practical element when it comes to equipment would be a harness, which your dog must wear whilst they learn this exercise.
And that harness would be attached to a long line.
This is for backup safety purposes. And just a word of caution. If anybody is ever handling along the line, you should wear gloves to ensure that you stay safe while friction burns.
For your first session, you need to be somewhere ideally outside. But with minimum distraction, we need to get the dog really, really involved in playing with the toy of choice in order to really create that positive reinforcement in response to the recall command that you’re going to use.
To start your dog on the chase recall training journey, the first thing you need to do is identify what toy he really, really likes, and he’s prepared to work for.
The next step is to then pair the dog getting that toy with whatever word you’re going to use for recall.
The next level will involve the use of the harness and the long line and a doll toy that the dog perhaps doesn’t have any interest in, we would start with throwing the doll toy away from the dog, he will go after it to chase it.
And we will then give him the recall command.
He then turns around, we throw the toy and he gets rewarded for coming away from the other item.
The association that we’re trying to build is that if the dog is chasing after something, and he hears this conditioned, recalled cue that he knows that if he spins around and comes back the other way, he’s going to get a more thrilling chase on a toy that he really, really wants.
The next level, if we were talking, perhaps about a dog that chases a jogger would be that we would have somebody set up in the distance, he might even start to chase that person.
Hence the harness on the long line for safety reasons, we then give that recall command and hope that he is going to spin round and come back.
That way we can really really celebrate his success.
If at any point, you feel that the dog is not coping as well reduce that level of distraction back down a couple of levels until you’re back on track.
And then you can increase them again. So once you’ve been getting really good, reliable recalls in the area that you’ve been training in regularly, you then need to generalize.
That means that you need to take this exercise into different areas and areas where you are likely to run into different triggers.
Quite often when you change an area, you might see a reduction in success with regards to the dogs responses that is perfectly natural, you will need to take it back a couple of stages in each new area that you go to that you’ll find they’ll be back up to speed really, really quickly.
It’s really, really important to remember that just because you feel you’ve taught it, the reinforcement stops recall is one of the few exercises that will actually save your dog’s life in the future.
Therefore it might be that one in three times that you call your dog.
He gets the opportunity to chase his toy by way of a reward.
Even the best-trained dog in the whole world does not have a 100% accurate recall in every situation.
Don’t be disheartened if within the first couple of weeks you haven’t nailed it.
It takes time. And actually, the longer it takes and the more thrill and excitement you can put into the learning, the more accurate the outcomes going to be.