Tips on how to get the dog to come back when off the lead. - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-05-2017, 10:21 AM Thread Starter
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Tips on how to get the dog to come back when off the lead.

New to GSD and the dog is without a shadow of a doubt great in every way, but as hes a year old and we are currently using one of them extendable leads he isnt getting the exercise he needs and Im wary of letting him off the lead as worried about him scooting off.
We have only had him a very short time and hes coming around great from the nervous dog that he was, but I dont want to lose him through my own stupidity and I can tell hes got some good running in him.
Where we walk him ( 40 acre park) I realise its all new to him and as theres so many exits (a dozen at least) he could end up anywhere.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-05-2017, 03:42 PM
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I would recommend a 6 foot lead on most walks. You could use a 30 ft lead clipped to the back of a harness if you want to allow room to roam. Trust me, your new friend will love going on adventures with you even on a leash. Don't feel bad if he isn't romping around off leash.

In a couple of years you'll both know each other better and you'll know if better if he'll do well staying near.

As far as getting more exercise, do some tug play. It's not just pulling your dog around. There is a science to it and we can give links if you'd like. Around age two you can teach him to run next to a bike. Right now you can go hiking up and down hills. You can play frisbee in dog parks when they are empty. Many GSDs of us don't recommend dog parks to socialize or play.

But even a flat land walk is good if you do a few miles. Mine do between 3 and 5 miles most days.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-05-2017, 03:51 PM
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I'm going to preface this with the fact I'm not an expert at all - but I live in a city and we've had to get creative finding ways to ensure Hudson gets his exercise while staying safe (so many cars everywhere and he's too young to jog with me, 7 months).

I found that high school fields are great places, and mostly if not completely fenced in, for fetch and off leash training. Other than that we have a 30 ft. leash that we use for adventures in the park/OB training in preparation for off leash training in a couple of months. We just harness him up and have a ball running around exploring random things that are boring (trees, rocks, benches) but extremely exciting to Hudson!

Also, I can't believe I'm admitting this publicly, but we also will do a hide and seek type game sometimes with hud at the park in the evening/early nightfall where I'll hide and my husband will let Hudson find me (on the long leash and harness) - anyone who watches us play must think we've lost our minds. But he absolutely loves that game. Somehow it's gotten the name "Where's Mommy?" - and he goes nuts if we even say that phrase while walking him to the park. Oh, the things we do for our dogs!
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-05-2017, 04:25 PM
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Congratulations on your new dog! You didn't say how long he's been with you, but I can tell you that I usually give a new dog a month or even two to settle in and just relax and bond. Play with him and take him for walks, let him snuggle up next to you while reading or watching a movie. New people, new home, new routine, new diet, new noises, it's a lot to get used to and it takes time. When he seems ready though, I also recommend working on basic obedience. He may already know quite a bit at 1 year, or he may not, depends on his circumstances, but he should catch on pretty quickly. GSDs LOVE to learn new stuff. Just be patient and consistent, using lots of praise and treats, and it's very likely he'll be well behaved in no time.

My puppy, now 8 months old, was nearly 100% on recall on or off leash by 5 months - until she decided she didn't want to🤗. The first time she openly defied a recall I knew I had to somehow nip that issue in the bud. So I spoke with a trainer about the possibility of using an e-collar...I couldn't figure out how I could convince her to come when she was off-leash and at some distance away from me any other way. But the trainer gave me another option, and it worked beautifully! She said to leave a leash on the dog in the house. At random times, and especially when the dog is busy doing something else, call her. First in a normal voice once and once only. If the dog doesn't come, call her again in a more demanding tone, but again, use this tone once and only once. If the dog still doesn't come, walk over to her, grab the leash, and without a word quietly but forcefully drag the dog over to where you were when you called them. Once there, praise the dog profusely, then release her to go about her business again. Wait and watch for the dog to be distracted again, and repeat the recall process. She told me that even the most rebellious dogs get the picture that come is not an optional command within a week or two. For my puppy it took only two iterations. She has not failed to recall in even the most distracting of circumstances since, so I highly recommend this approach! Good luck, and again congratulations on getting the best dog breed on the planet!
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-07-2017, 08:06 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the advice, especially the wheres mommy game I can see us playing that.

Well yesterday late in the evening no one else around off the lead he goes, made sure the wife was there as he is properly in love with her, off he went and back he came time after time, Im sure it will go **** up sooner or later buts its a good start.
He also comes back to his name pretty much all the time.
Turns out he obsessed with tennis balls, so far hes wrecked one and between us weve lost two more.

Also hes a proper scaredy car, he ran up to a little dog this morning and the little dog turned to play and Yogi took off at high speed!
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-08-2017, 05:07 PM Thread Starter
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Now hes totally lost interest in tennis balls, started on sticks but has given them up as well!
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-10-2017, 04:22 PM
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I dont know if I reply to youre guestion right, but. What. I give u my thing- I get a Puppy- he is free at the forest-if he goes-I go another way, and I dont call him to me-he has to follow. There is a thing.

He is a year old, this is sort of thing u can safely train with a big leash. Dont call him, go another way always. dont look at him, dont speek at him, none. BUT when he comes to u praise so much, special treat whatsoever,playtime... u name it. And then release him again.

thing is, he has to like to be with ur side cause there is plenty of good things coming from u. make yourself interesting.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-10-2017, 06:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkernan View Post

Also, I can't believe I'm admitting this publicly, but we also will do a hide and seek type game sometimes with hud at the park in the evening/early nightfall where I'll hide and my husband will let Hudson find me (on the long leash and harness) - anyone who watches us play must think we've lost our minds. But he absolutely loves that game. Somehow it's gotten the name "Where's Mommy?" - and he goes nuts if we even say that phrase while walking him to the park. Oh, the things we do for our dogs!
Nothing nuts about this. Our dogs LOVE this game. We can even do it in the house somewhat. My hubby and I each hold some hot dog bits. One has the dogs, the other hides. We release with a Find (Name) and they get a reward when they do. Then the dogs are held again and the other person hides. The dogs run back and forth a few times. We started this to help teach the dogs our names. We played this game in a park this summer and another park visitor was just enchanted watching our dog searching. My hubby had the big boy and I had my gal dog and we each hid along with our dog. It was great fun,
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-10-2017, 07:45 PM
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Now hes totally lost interest in tennis balls, started on sticks but has given them up as well!
Balls with squeakers may regain his interest.

https://www.amazon.com/KONG-Squeakai...r+balls+medium
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-15-2017, 06:21 PM
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Originally Posted by car2ner View Post
Nothing nuts about this. Our dogs LOVE this game. We can even do it in the house somewhat. My hubby and I each hold some hot dog bits. One has the dogs, the other hides. We release with a Find (Name) and they get a reward when they do. Then the dogs are held again and the other person hides. The dogs run back and forth a few times. We started this to help teach the dogs our names. We played this game in a park this summer and another park visitor was just enchanted watching our dog searching. My hubby had the big boy and I had my gal dog and we each hid along with our dog. It was great fun,
Gah, yes validation we aren't insane! Where's mommy is definitely Hudson's favorite game in the book LOL event if we look like looney tunes running around the park at dusk - literally don't care!

Also - hotdogs are magic, Hudson will write me a dissertation if there's a hotdog available as a reward. Never underestimate the power of the hot dog - good call!

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