I can recall Pongu off (almost) anything. I have recalled him out of dog fights and away from deer, bunnies, a groundhog, and miscellaneous other critters I couldn't see clearly.
I do not have the same degree of reliability with Crookytail. He gets better and then as soon as I start thinking we're done and I don't need to continually reinforce him in recall drills, his reliability starts slipping down again. Partly it's a breed difference (more independent Akita/pit mix vs. handler-oriented GSD mix), partly it's a personality difference (Pongu is super needy), and partly it's that my relationship with Pongu is much, much stronger than my relationship with Crookytail.
It isn't about fear, and it isn't really about treats, either. It's about relationship and practice. And, of course, about the dog.
ARCHMX TDCH Pongu the Insane, CD-C, RA, RL1X5, RL2X4, RL3X2 (GSD mix, b. Apr 2010)
Crookytail the Tigerwuff, RL1, NTD (Akita mix, b. Jan 2011)