You And Your Puppy- Puppy Recall – Part 5 of 11
Carolyn: Luciana, Diesel is absolutely gorgeous. It’s so nice to see a happy, wiggly, giggly Staffordshire Bull Terrier. How long have you had him?
Luciana: Six or seven weeks now.
Carolyn: So how is his training going?
Luciana: It’s going really well. I’m just a bit concerned about letting him off the lead to be honest.
Carolyn: Luciana, lots of people worry about that. But you’ve already started doing your recall training without knowing it because you’re already rewarding him when he pays attention to you. So let’s go inside and go and do some work on it for real. Come on gorgeous boy. Let’s go do some work.
So to start when you’re training your recall always do it inside. Do it where there’s no distractions and there’s not lots of things going on. Take some treats. These are my fantastic homemade domestic goddess treats, but you just need something that your dog really, really loves and you make it a game. So to start with show them the treat, hold the treat in the end of the nose, and just walking backwards. So you’re just teaching him that if he follows you he gets good stuff. And there’s nothing more to it than that. Training puppies is just a lot about making it fun and just having a laugh. It doesn’t matter if you feel a bit silly.
Luciana: Oh, I can do silly.
Carolyn: That’s good. So treat on the nose, and see, see, wee, like that. Then once you’ve done that you can really make it into even more of a game. And this is when the recall actually starts to work. So treat on the nose like before, once he gets to it, just drop the treat and run off somewhere else. So straight away he’s going, “Oh, where she had gone?” And following you. So you go, “Here, good boy. Diesel, Diesel, Diesel. Yey.” And you’re making it a game, you’re making it really active, and you’re making it really fun. Because all the time what you’re trying to do is your puppy all the time should be turning back to you to say, “What’s next? What’s next? What we’re doing? What we’re doing?” So you become the most exciting thing out there. Okay, do you fancy having a go?
Luciana: Okay, I’ll have a go.
Carolyn: Now remember, silly.
Luciana: No problem. Okay.
Carolyn: Now first thing is we’re just going to do the running backwards. So just get a treat, hold it on the end of his nose, and then just move backwards and just encourage him to come with you. Are you ready gorgeous boy?
Luciana: He is.
Carolyn: Treat on the end of the nose. A few steps back, and drop the treat. It’s always easier to drop the treat just because when you’re doing lots of moving around and they get really excited it could just encourage them to just grab at your hands if they’re taking treats from your hands all the time. Okay, treat on the end of the nose, walk backwards, fantastic. Right. Now we’re going to start playing the game. So treat on the end of the nose. Walk backwards. And then when you drop the treat you’re going to run over to me. Good. And then as soon as he looks at you, get really excited and you can really encourage him to come to you, drop the treat. Even faster than that. Run over there. Faster, faster, faster. Good, and drop the treat. And run over here. So he’s look at you, brilliant, and drop the treat.
Luciana: Haven’t got one.
Carolyn: So you’re ready. She wasn’t. You’re working with amateurs, Diesel. Okay, drop the treat and run. Make sure you’ve got another treat. Encourage him with your voice.
Luciana: Come on, you.
Carolyn: Yeah, brilliant. And encourage him with your voice again.
Luciana: Come on.
Luciana: Good boy.
Carolyn: And again, brilliant. So practice that in here a lot. Then you can do it in lots of other rooms in the house. So there’s still no distractions and you can take him out in the garden where there’s birds tweeting and the odd squirrel and then you’re ready to take it into the great outdoors.
Luciana: So when you actually suggest that someone let the dog off a lead?
Carolyn: Well, I start letting puppies off almost as soon as you start taking them outside. Because they’re still a little bit insecure and they want to stay with you and they’ve already learned it’s a really, really fun game. The time to let your puppy off the lead isn’t when he gets to six months old and he’s a bit of a teenager and wants to go and explore the world. So as long as you practice in here, in the garden, and you know he’s focused on you, then straight away.
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