Does your dog run away when you call him?  Does your dog act like “come” means run for your life?  Maybe your dog is stubborn.  He might be dominant, rebellious.  Or, just maybe, you taught him to run away.  WHAT?  Flat Coated Retriever Running SmallDid you ever call your dog, only to be unhappy when he came to you?  Maybe he did not come as quickly as you wished, maybe you called him because you were mad at him. 

Perhaps you called your dog, then gave him a bath, clipped his nails, or put him in his crate for the long workday.  Your dog probably did not enjoy these activities.  He might have even learned to predict these activities and avoids you when you have these things in mind. 

Dog Obedience Training HoustonAs it turns out, while your dog cannot do calculus, or send a man to the moon, he is pretty smart.  When a cue, “come”, predicts an undesirable outcome from the dog’s point of view, he will avoid you when he hears the cue. 

If you wish your dog to come when you call, have a pleasant, wanted outcome for your dog.  One of my favorite “desirable, wanted” outcomes is chicken or turkey.  When you need your dog for a necessary, but not desirable from the dog’s point of view, task, go get the dog.  Don’t ruin your recall by calling for something unpleasant.  When you call your dog, pet him, praise him, and give him five or six pieces – one at a time please! – of chicken or turkey. 

Tricia Fagan

Certified Professional Dog Trainer

****Trainer’s tip:  Call your dog, then turn your back and run away.  Your dog will run faster to catch you.  When your dog catches you, play with him, or give him treats. Come see us for Dog Obedience Training Houston.