After being asked 5
times today already about recall I thought I would do a post.
As everyone will by now be aware recall is always a controversial topic when it comes to sight hounds.
I have always and will always be an advocate for responsible recall.
I think it is important that every one teaches and practises recall. If only to use in an emergency such as a dog slipping out a door or gate left open, or a cat coming into the garden when it shouldn't be there.
I will go on in this post to give the tips and tricks I give my adopters for recall.
If you don't want to teach your dog recall or don't believe in/ agree it that's ok, but please keep scrolling this post is intended to help not cause a war in the comments section.
Feel free to message the help a Hound fb page for more tips and advice.
Now let's get started :D
So what is responsible recall?
First off know your dog. Not every dog will be able to be let off the lead but even the spooks that might not use recall in the park should still practice incase its ever needed.
Know your area when you do go on to do recall it has so he a safe area for this. Away from main roads or traffic beaches, woods and countryside hills are ideal :) if you are in the country please make sure to follow the green cross code and watch out for sheep :)
Start small and work up to bigger.
Start in the house calling them over reward with a hight value treat and lots of praise.
Make the treat something they really like.
Keep doing this till they get the hang of it. I also make mine sit at this stage and wait before being let go again. A little often is better than in one sitting to avoid disinterest.
Next step is to repeat this in your garden (if you don't have garden borrow one or use a small enclosed space).
To start with I use treats, also then do it without treats so my dog knows to come with or without a treat. If they don't get a treat lots of praise and pats do just fine :)
Remember you may not always have treat to hand especially if your dog has just slipped out the gate. So make sure your dog will come back when you don't have treat too.
Work up getting to a bigger and bigger space. Enclosed fields, dog parks you get the picture.
When calling the back do it often. It's important the you don't only call them back to put them on their lead, this creates the association that the funs over its back on the lead. Not what you want. Instead call them back and let them go several times in any given session.
Once you have mastered this repeat the process using distractions.
Before going out into unenclosed areas check your adoption contract does your contract allow recall? If your planing on adopting and want to do recall make sure you adopt from a group that advocates or allows recall.
Once your comfortable with this and have built enough trust between you and your dog go out side and try it. A little every day. Practice makes perfect. Don't rush take your time. If your not ready today there is always tomorrow that's ok :)
A few tips.
-when calling my dogs over I have the rule they have to touch my hand before going away again. For this I use the buzz word touch. This stops them coming "close enough" and means they have to come fully over to me.
-teaching commands sit, no and wait also aid with recall training.
-know your area, is it likely to be suitable or not? Is there any roads or sheep you should be aware of?
-Be aware of other dogs off the lead, I like to keep them close by if there is other dogs about. You never know how good someone's dog or not is with other dogs. You also do not know how well under control and owner has their dog even if off the lead. I generally avoid the dog park for this reason and prefer canal walks :)
The golden rule is the most fun your dog should have off the lead is at your feet! :)
The person that knows your dog best is you.p
If I think of any more tips I'll add them later :)
Any questions feel free to ask.
A link to a video of Molly showing some of her recall skills.