Total Recall

A good run provides exercise and mental stimulation for your dog, but before removing that leash, you want to be sure Buddy will come back when called.

Proper recall training is essential to prevent dogs from wandering onto a road or getting lost. Melissa Millett, head dog-training instructor at In Dogs We Trust in London, Ont., shares recall training tips for pups (or any dog who needs a summer refresher). 

The first step, she says, is teaching Buddy to focus. Reward him each time he makes eye contact without prompting while on a leashed walk.

Next, practise restrained recall in a fenced area. Have someone hold the dog while you move a few metres away. Call him by name and say, “Come,” as your helper releases the lead. Always reward him for coming—even if it takes a while.

Still don’t trust your pup’s recall skills? Don’t force it. Of Millett’s nine professionally trained dogs, she only allows six off leash.

One is a terrier with a high prey drive, another is only two pounds and could be a snack for a bird of prey, another is a deaf car-chaser. Many dogs are happy with hikes on long leashes and enjoy running in fenced yards.

Melissa Millett - Head dog-training instructor at In Dogs We Trust in London, Ont.

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