Winning the Game of Coming When Catted

One of the greatest joys of owning a dog is going for a walk in a park or the woods and letting him run, knowing he'll come when called. A dog that doesn't come when called is a prisoner of his leash and, if he gets loose, is a danger to himself and others. This section offers some proven rules for helping you and your dog realize the benefits of coming when called.

Here are the basic rules you need to follow to encourage your dog to come to you when you call him:

i Exercise, exercise, exercise. Many dogs don't come when called because they don't get enough exercise. At every chance, they run off and make the most of this unexpected freedom by staying out for hours at a time.

ë Consider what your dog was bred to do, and that tells you how much exercise he needs. Just putting him out in the backyard isn't good enough. You have to participate. Think of it this way: Exercise is as good for you as it is for your dog. A good source for exercise requirements is The Roger Caras Dog Book: The Complete Guide to Every AKC Breed, 3rd Edition (M. Evans & Co.).

i Whenever your dog comes to you, be nice to him. One of the quickest ways to teach your dog not to come to you is to call him to punish him or to do something the dog perceives as unpleasant. Most dogs consider being called to be left alone in the house when you go out or to be given a pill unpleasant. In these circumstances, go and get Buddy instead of calling him to you.

ë Another example of teaching your dog not to come is to take him for a run in the park and call him to you when it's time to go home. Repeating this sequence several times teaches the dog that the party is over. Soon, he may become reluctant to return to you when called because he isn't ready to end the fun. You can prevent this kind of unintentional training by calling him to you several times during his outing, sometimes giving him a treat, sometimes just a word of praise. Then let him romp again.

i Teach him to "Come" as soon as you get him. Ideally, you acquired your dog as a puppy, which is the best time to teach him to come when called. Start right away. But remember, sometime between 4 and 8 months of age your puppy begins to realize there's a big, wide world out there (see Chapter 3). While he's going through this stage, keep him on leash so he doesn't learn that he can ignore you when you call him.

i When in doubt, keep him on leash. Learn to anticipate when your dog is likely not to come. You may be tempting fate by trying to call him after he has spotted a cat, another dog, or a jogger. Of course, there are times when you goof and let him go just as another dog appears out of nowhere.

Resist the urge to make a complete fool of yourself by bellowing "Come" a million times. The more often you holler "Come," the quicker he learns he can ignore you when he's off leash. Instead, patiently go to him and put him on leash. Don't get angry with him after you've caught him, or you'll make him afraid of you, and he'll run away from you when you try to catch him the next time.

1 Make sure your dog always comes to you and lets you touch his collar before you reward. Touching his collar prevents the dog from developing the annoying habit of playing "catch" — coming toward you and then dancing around you, just out of reach. So teach him to let you touch his collar before you offer him a treat or praise.

Dog Potty Training

Dog Potty Training

This is for people who want to potty train their dog NOW. Discover The Ability To Finally Potty Train Your Dog In No Time! I'm going to get right down to it... If you've found this page, either you or someone you know has a puppy that needs to be potty trained. Maybe you've tried a ton of various methods you've read about but have had no success. How can some people potty train their puppy with hardly any effort?

Get My Free Ebook


Post a comment