Training off leash (front yard) - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 36 (permalink) Old 03-17-2010, 03:43 PM Thread Starter
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Training off leash (front yard)

Summer is coming soon, and I would LOVE to have my dog with me in the front while i am working. The thing is, she does not stay on our property, if dogs pass she will run after them wanting to play, and if runners pass she will chase them and want to run with them. :P If you have any advice on how i can train her to stay on our yard, please let me know. P.S she has gotten much better when she is on leash, when i am not holding it, but once i take off the leash, she bolts. But she IS getting better.
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post #2 of 36 (permalink) Old 03-17-2010, 04:10 PM
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Both of my GSDs are off leash trained to stay on my property, and I live in a subdivision with LOTS of kids and dogs. What I did when they were puppies, as early as 10 weeks was to take them on leash along the entire boundary of our property. I repeated "Home, good Home" over and over. Then, I used a clicker with treats. The process, on leash was, take the dog right to the property line with a treat in my pocket and just stand there. When the pup took a step toward me I clicked and treated. I repeated this over and over in the same spot until the pup readily took that one step to me. Then, I moved the pup to various locations around the property line, slowly so that at each spot, the pup understood stepping to the inside of the yard got him a treat. I also continued my parade on leash around the property repeating "good Home." When the pup understood to get a treat anywhere on the property line he had to step into the yard, I then assigned the cue "home." Because the pup was familiar with the word, it quickly learned that inside the property was "Home" and that he (later she) was the best dog in the world for staying "Home." Finally, I attached a long piece of yarn to the collar (light enough so that the pup did not think there was a leash attached) and went out in the yard waiting for the pup to cross the property line. When he got within about 6 inches, I would command Home! If he stayed in the property, he got a Jackpot treat. If he did not, he got a "Aw try again" and I could control him by simply grabbing the yarn. Two failures in a row and we went back in the house. I did not scold, act mad, or frustrated. I just took away what he wanted. Ten minutes later, we would try again. He quickly learned that staying in the yard meant he could stay out with me. Finally, the biggest tests -- I arranged for several of my neighbors (God bless them) to walk by with kids screaming, bouncing balls, dogs, you name it. The same process was used. If the pup stayed in the yard, Jackpot treat AND people would come onto the property to tell him how great he was. If he broke the property line twice, in the house for ten minutes. Both my dogs quickly learned that great things happen if they just stay in the yard, including meeting all those exciting people and dogs! Hope this helps and good luck!

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post #3 of 36 (permalink) Old 03-17-2010, 04:18 PM
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Personally I think its dangerous to leave your dog off the leash, no matter how trained or how much you trust them.Its seems nice, but in the end, you never know what any dog or your dog will do.Some people may not like it.I personally think its safer, to keep them on a leash.Get one of those long leashes that you can hook up to a metal pole thing into the ground and the leash is long so your dog can still move around alot.I also do not like when people walk their dog without a leash, thats twice as dangerous.I was walking my dog when some lady was walking her little dogs with out a leash, she had 5 dogs, those dogs went after everything that went by, with or without a dog.Her dogs almost went after mine!Seriously, do what safe for you, your dog, and the public, no matter how well trained, well behaved or how much you trust your dog, you just never know.

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post #4 of 36 (permalink) Old 03-17-2010, 05:14 PM
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Just for clarification, when I walk my dogs, they are always on leash. This is more for their protection in the event we run into dogs off leash. Then I can protect my dogs. As to on my property -- my dogs are 9 and 8 years old. They have NEVER left the property without my permission. However, they are also NEVER left alone outside. A family member is always with them.

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post #5 of 36 (permalink) Old 03-17-2010, 09:17 PM
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Hard to teach for most of us, unless we get a really early start. Best bet is a long tie out in the yard, or those cables you can string between trees that you can use when you are outdoors.

Theoretically a reliable 'come' would fit the bill. But that's with a ton of distractions, which DOG CLASSES would ideally come into play. Our dogs learn to listen and obey in general at class, which will then follow thru in specific to a 'come'. But even if your dog is getting ready to run off, and you have a good 'sit' in place, that will stop forward motion.... Also taught in dog class WITH distractions!




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post #6 of 36 (permalink) Old 03-17-2010, 10:43 PM
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You might try getting a 20' cotton line, and just hooking it to the dog when she is out front. Then communicate with her that you do NOT want her to cross the property line, which you can do through rewards for being on the good side and (at first) a verbal correction if she wanders across the line, then pull her back and praise. After awhile you'll find that she'll want to stay in the yard (where she can relax, uncorrected) but that is when you'll need to up the ante with distractions.

If you think she's going to charge after a distraction, just grab the end of the line and put some mustard into a correction should she decide to pass over the property line after a distraction. By that point she has learned you do not want her to cross the line, so IMO the correction would be "justified" and remind her that no matter how boring the yard is compared to what's going on in the street, she can't go across (without you next to her on a walk, for example).

Eventually she'll get the idea that it's in her interest to stay in the yard, NEVER charge after distractions that may walk by, and you could eventually remove the leash. But frankly, the dogs freedom is hardly limited by pulling a light line around-- even a 30-50'+ piece of light rope (like the common yellow rope) would allow you to catch and correct her if she gives in to her desires to chase something outside the property.

For awhile I was spending time in my frontyard throwing the ball and doing training with my dog(s) who would wear a cotton line. They are able to fetch and do normal dog stuff with a 20' line no problem, and an "EH!" verbal correction when they got too close to the line really did seem to work. After a few times of "EH!" I'd see them start to slow down around the yard lines so that part was working.. never got in to proofing for distractions though..

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post #7 of 36 (permalink) Old 03-17-2010, 11:03 PM
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I wouldn't. Here is my little incident. I have a very well behaved very well obedient Sheltie. He is going to be 5 years old tomorrow. He has NEVER left my yard without my permission. As a matter of fact he is pretty reliable to stay in my yard. He ignored people, dogs and kids that would walk by, even ignored cars since shelties LOVE to chase cars due to their herding instinct. But from early on i have taught Casey not to chase anything.

Well last summer, out of the blue to my surprised he ran off the yard, running towards a couple of women and their dogs. I freaked!. I have learned my lesson that no matter how very well obedient your dog is something will always trigger them to run after something.

I would use a cotton line to contain the dog just for your dog's safety. Unless of course you live on some type of property where your neighbors are 1 mile away .
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post #8 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-20-2014, 12:11 AM
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I am going to try this with my new puppy.. he is already pretty good about staying in the yard and just watching people and dogs as they walk by but he will go out if someone calls him so i want him to know he needs to stay unless i take him out.
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post #9 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-20-2014, 12:28 AM
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I use on the lawn, for my guys. Mine live with cats, added benefit is they don't chase cats! Even still they are only out of my sight fro a minuet at the most if I run in the house...they stare at the door and not the street to look for me!

You can't even think off leaving them loose out front till they have rock solid recall and walk on leash by your side without dog reactivity. Even then, I never leave them unattended for no more than a moment! And a moment is all it takes for a life time of regret!

Any behavior that you want to insure, the dog has to be proofed for, in order to ensure that the dog does absolutely 100% what he is expected to do. I'd say mine on the front lawn were a good 99%!

That's very good but it's not a 100!
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post #10 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-20-2014, 12:33 AM
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Originally Posted by KayElle View Post
Both of my GSDs are off leash trained to stay on my property, and I live in a subdivision with LOTS of kids and dogs. What I did when they were puppies, as early as 10 weeks was to take them on leash along the entire boundary of our property. I repeated "Home, good Home" over and over. Then, I used a clicker with treats. The process, on leash was, take the dog right to the property line with a treat in my pocket and just stand there. When the pup took a step toward me I clicked and treated. I repeated this over and over in the same spot until the pup readily took that one step to me. Then, I moved the pup to various locations around the property line, slowly so that at each spot, the pup understood stepping to the inside of the yard got him a treat. I also continued my parade on leash around the property repeating "good Home." When the pup understood to get a treat anywhere on the property line he had to step into the yard, I then assigned the cue "home." Because the pup was familiar with the word, it quickly learned that inside the property was "Home" and that he (later she) was the best dog in the world for staying "Home." Finally, I attached a long piece of yarn to the collar (light enough so that the pup did not think there was a leash attached) and went out in the yard waiting for the pup to cross the property line. When he got within about 6 inches, I would command Home! If he stayed in the property, he got a Jackpot treat. If he did not, he got a "Aw try again" and I could control him by simply grabbing the yarn. Two failures in a row and we went back in the house. I did not scold, act mad, or frustrated. I just took away what he wanted. Ten minutes later, we would try again. He quickly learned that staying in the yard meant he could stay out with me. Finally, the biggest tests -- I arranged for several of my neighbors (God bless them) to walk by with kids screaming, bouncing balls, dogs, you name it. The same process was used. If the pup stayed in the yard, Jackpot treat AND people would come onto the property to tell him how great he was. If he broke the property line twice, in the house for ten minutes. Both my dogs quickly learned that great things happen if they just stay in the yard, including meeting all those exciting people and dogs! Hope this helps and good luck!
Wow now that sounds like 100% and proofed but..what about stray cats?
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