When you first set out to teach your dog to come, there are a few tips and secrets that Im going to share with you to better your results!
I have adapted these free techniques from the outstanding ‘Secrets to Dog Training‘ by Daniel Stephens. Check it out here if you wish to read more now.
Firstly, and possibly the most crucial, is that you should never call your dog over if you are going to do something that he might class as ‘negative’ to him.. Some typical examples are actions such as tethering him up, washing him (if he loathes that!), telling him off, locking him up, smacking him etc..
Never call and then punish your dog for something like running away when he comes over. You dont want your dog to learn that doing as you say, is a punishment.If your dog already knows bad associations with come, like he thinks it equals 'run now!' or if he becomes oblivious to it you may have to use a different command with a new sound.
Forget your old come command and teach this exercise using a new, clear word. 'Here' or 'Hey' are popular ones, but really its up to you to use any command that you think will work.
Best case, your pet should hear this command, stop what hes doing and come sit infront of you, ideally that is! Best results are had when you treat this step as two different exercises.
Both exercises are best done seperatly, till your dog has them completely mastered. When this time comes, bring them together.
“Come sit in front of me”
Start with putting your dog on a short ish leash. With a treat ready, get your pets attention and hold up the treat at nose neight while taking 4 steps backwards.
With your waiting dog in front, you can hold up a tidbit of food so that he is motioned to sit and wait.
Command him to sit, and when he sits to your satisfaction, give him the treat by lowing it to his mouth. Avoid letting him leap to get it!
Next time, do the process standing in place and holding your ground, instead of moving back. Try to eliminate the treat part of the exercise, and change to a reinforcing command. This helps your dog to accept praise as a reward.