Tips for Coming When Called

The two most important things to remember are to always praise your dog when they come to you – and set yourself up for success.

Teach your dog that ‘Come’ means – run to me, there’s a party over here!
Never say ‘Come’ when you think your dog may not do it
Only call your dog to come when you KNOW you can make them, not hope that they will
Always balance distance and distractions for level of difficulty – ie, work at a level where your dog can be successful. If there are distractions, work at a short distance away. If there are no distractions, you can be farther away
Do not call your dog to ‘Come’ for anything she doesn’t like
Never call your dog in anger
Call your dog only once – and then make her come or walk away
Always praise and reward your dog for coming to you- make sure you reward and praise a lot!! (a full 20 seconds of petting for example)
Never punish your dog for coming to you – even if it takes awhile for him to get there.
Never chase after your dog
Get your dog to chase you if you don’t have control
Practice first indoors with no distractions
Use a food lure at dog’s nose and walk backwards to start the behavior
Practice calling ‘Come’ for mealtimes and for walks
Practice 10 times on each outdoor leash walk (intersperse walking backwards and calling your dog)
Gradually add distractions and different locations
Practice outside on a long line –first with no distractions, then add distractions
Use high value food rewards when practicing outside
Don’t expect to get from kindergarten to graduate school quickly – this takes time!!
Practice “Gotcha” so your dog is used to having its collar grabbed
Say name first, make sure you have attention, and then call Come
Praise your dog as they come to you
Do NOT repeat the command over and over – just get closer and try again

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