Teaching The Come Command To Your Dog

The come command is​ a​ very useful and very important skill as​ it​ can get your dog quickly out of​ a​ difficult or​ dangerous situation. if​ your dog will instantly turn away from what it's doing and return to​ you,​ then you​ have a​ safety mechanism continually at​ your finger-tips. as​ with all training,​ you​ should begin in​ a​ quiet location with few distractions (probably inside your own home),​ then increase the​ distractions as​ the​ new exercise becomes more familiar to​ your dog.
You should have lots of​ treats ready for this training technique – it​ is​ essential to​ reward your dog IMMEDIATELY he exhibits the​ correct behaviour. He will not remember what he's just done if​ you​ leave it​ too long,​ by searching in​ your pocket or​ a​ bag,​ so you​ should have the​ treat already in​ your hand,​ anticipating his obedience. When he masters the​ command,​ you​ should give him his favourite treat straight away and praise him.

This exercise is​ best carried out with two people. (If this isn't possible,​ a​ long training leash can be used,​ along with the​ stay command.) One person should hold the​ dog's collar,​ the​ other should show him and let him sniff his treat. Then close your hand over the​ treat and back away from your dog while your companion holds his collar. if​ your dog already knows how to​ sit and stay (and he should do!) then use this command while you​ back away from him to​ about ten feet distance. Now stop and call your dog's name followed by the​ word “come”. you​ must be consistent,​ always use the​ same word in​ the​ same tone of​ voice. Later,​ if​ you​ want friends or​ family to​ use your dog's commands,​ you​ must teach them how to​ say them and use them correctly. Inconsistency will confuse your dog and undermine your training techniques.

Once you​ have called your dog's name and the​ word “come”,​ your companion should release the​ collar and your dog will almost certainly return to​ you. Give him his treat and praise him enthusiastically. Repeat the​ exercise many times,​ increasing the​ distance between you​ and your dog and even going out of​ his line of​ sight. He will soon have learned the​ exercise and associate “come” with a​ nice treat and praise.

The next part of​ the​ training is​ to​ take your dog outside to​ a​ quiet location. Your companion should hold your dog on​ it's leash and run over to​ you​ with the​ dog when you​ give the​ “come” command. Once it​ is​ clear that the​ dog is​ responding well to​ the​ command and responding to​ the​ positive reinforcement of​ the​ treat,​ you​ can try the​ command with the​ dog off the​ leash in​ a​ safe environment.

Remember to​ always use positive reinforcement for this exercise – don't call your dog to​ you​ to​ tell him off or​ to​ do something he dislikes,​ like putting his leash back on. if​ you​ want to​ get him back on​ the​ leash,​ you​ can trick him by calling him to​ you,​ playing a​ little game where he stays close to​ you,​ then putting his leash on,​ so he doesn't associate the​ command with something negative. Some dogs don't see the​ leash as​ negative and therefore you​ can just call him as​ normal and give him a​ treat or​ praise him.

As with all training exercises,​ the​ key to​ success is​ repetition,​ patience,​ consistency and positive association. Your dog will be a​ happier,​ healthier,​ safer dog for accomplishing this simple task in​ a​ variety of​ environments with differing degrees of​ distraction until it​ is​ an​ automatic response.

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