Train your pup to come when called!

A lot of pet owners today are under the impression that dogs are people. Dogs are as smart as a 3 year old child and can learn up to 300 words and commands, maybe even more. With that being said, it is important to understand that they do not know anything before hand. Dogs can be very smart creatures but they need a lot of repetition and patience to learn a new word, or command, or trick.

Getting your dog to come when called is not only a behavior issue, but it's also a safety issue. If your dog gets loose or bolts out the front door, you want to be sure that they'll stop and come back when called.

The "come" command is a good one. This is where you should decide if you want to teach your dog to come when you say "come" or their name. Either one will do, but do not get frustrated when you repeatedly shout their name or the word "come" and they do not budge. They do not speak English nor do they understand what you want when you say this word, until you teach them the word.

Don't make the cue negative! If you’ve asked your dog to “come” and then did something he would perceive as a negative like scolding him or leaving him in a crate, or giving him a bath, that’s known as “poisoning a cue.” You want your dog to understand that coming to you is always a positive thing and always a good time.

It would be safe to say that you might need to pick a new word of command, If you’ve already used “come” too many times before punishing your dog. It’s easier than training an unknown command than changing the meaning of one he knows and doesn’t like. No matter what word you choose, make sure it always results in great fun and rewards.

The Back Up And Recall Method. You can try this method either with a leash or without, depending on how much your dog already knows. First, you'll want to have your dog on a long leash. Have some tasty treats ready on hand or maybe even your pups favorite toy. Second, from a distance, say the command that you wish to teach your dog (either come, or here, or their name). When they reach you, give them a treat and a lot of praise. If they do not budge then use the leash as a tool to budge them towards you. Repeat this step over and over again, until they no longer need the leash. As your dog gets better and better at this, increase the distance between your pup and yourself. When you find it that they know the meaning of the command, the only thing left to do would be to strengthen that bond. Add distractions while you do this exercise (maybe throw a water ball or get a second person to distract your dog when you say the command). You'll find it that your dog can excel quickly within a few days of this training. The final step would be to take this training outside, where there are a million and one distractions. Practice this training for at least 30 minutes a day, and always make it a positive experience for your pup. Keep them wanting more at the end of the lesson!

The more you practice the command and reinforce what great positivity it brings, then you will have a well trained pup in no time!