I travelled to Harpole situated in Northamptonshire today to help the owners of Betty a cross mix who was testing her owners when it came to calling her back, otherwise known as recall! Now I’m familiar with Betty as she comes every Friday to my dog obedience training classes held in Far Cotton Northampton. She is currently aiming towards her silver award under my dog training scheme called “Big Top Obedience” Although we cover recall in the class her owners felt they would benefit from a dog trainer like me performing a 121 dog training class.
Again the sun was shinning and parking near to the property, the two dogs were at the side of the property. A couple of barks and a meet and greet with the dogs and they soon settled. I entered the property and began the consultation.
Some of the things which were contributing to the poor recall in Betty was a lack of training her in dog recall away from the class, the wrong use of equipment on the walk, excitement levels, prey drives (the chasing of birds and more) to name a few. It was my job to talk about the dog psychology of the dog to why these events and mind states were affecting the recall. The owners found this very inserting and enlightening. So it was then time to asses and work through the different exercises to achieve a good dog recall.
I have different exercises for different situations, one to teach the dog the meaning of the commands used to call the dog, and another what to do when the dog doesn’t respond to commands. We covered how to build upon the basics and advance the recall to other environments. Recall training is easy to get your dog to perform, if you have the right guidance and understanding and training equipment.
To many dog owners assume there dog will understand when they shout across the park “come or here” then quickly get embarrassed or frustrated because the dog doesn’t do this. Breed plays a part, some are natural hunters and get their nose down making what we call in the industry scent deaf! Puppies can give you a false impression that no Recall training should is required. They will follow you around in the park and possibly in the home as well. This can lead owners thinking there dog will always come back, and because the puppy generally won’t leave your side, it doesn’t get highlighted as a training need until something distracts and then doesn’t come back on command! Recall training in a puppy or older dog should start the moment you get them, don’t delay. If your dog isn’t responding to your commands to come back, then I can help guide you on the do’s and don’ts. A good recall in a dog is paramount and could be a life saver. My tip never let your dog off until you have a good recall instilled in your dog.