Summer is upon us, so let’s look at three common summer training troubles that routinely pop up this time of year for dog owners. We’re all outside more in the summer, and by “all” I mean other dog owners, kids off from school,
skateboarders, bicyclists and more abundant wildlife.
1Come back here! Off-leash training is crucial for safety
reasons. Dogs don’t understand cars, and
if a chatty squirrel is observed on the other
side of the road, even the most highly trained
dog might listen to his dog brain over all of
his training and take a run at the squirrel
through traffic. Warmer weather brings out
dog owners nationwide who want to give their
dogs the gift of running off leash — but it is a
very dangerous (and illegal where leashes are
the law) gift indeed. The best policy is always
walk your dog on leash as it ensures safety for
your dog and mine as well as all other people
your dog may choose to greet.
Recall training needs to begin way before
you ever unclip your dog’s leash outside.
Perfect your dog’s recall in the quiet of your
home and then your own securely fenced
yard before ever granting this privilege in
public (where it is legal to do so). Long ago,
I heard a trainer describe off-leash dog work
as “canine Ph.D. level training,” and it’s true.
Go through all the grades by training on
leash first. Think of off-leash experiences
as something a dog earns through positive
Speak! ✒ BY ANNIE PHENIX, CPDT-KA SIT Stay GO