One of the valuable training procedures that you can use to gain more control over your dog is aptly named ‘recall’.
When you are walking your dog in a park, or a vast area of woodland, and you let him off his lead you have to be sure that you are still in a position to control your dog.
Training a dog to ‘come’ when you call him means you are in control and your dog will enjoy more freedom than he would being on a lead. Should any dangerous situations arise, such as another dog or passing car, you know that when you call he will immediately respond and come to your side.
The first thing you need to do in order to teach your dog to recognise your command is to choose for him a ‘cue’ such as “come, dog”. This terminology can NOT be allowed to change to any other wording such as “dog, here” or “dog, come”. Your dog will respond to the sounds that your voice makes, so saying your command in the correct way each time is vital.
Do not exchange a command for a whistle as it will confuse your dog.
A dog owner’s body language is important when training the dog, and with ‘recall’ it is important not to face the dog, but instead to turn to the side before calling him. Your dog will realise, from your body movement and command, that he is expected to run to you. Do not call your dog while you are facing him as your body language is saying ‘move further away’.
Praise and treats should be given at this time, or you could play a game with his favourite ball to let him know that he has done well.