I've been searching the forums for how to work on long distance recalls and a key piece of advice seems to be to use a long line.... but (and this is going to sound silly...) how exactly do I use it?
I took Tesla to the park to work on long distance recalls using a 30ft long line + ball for reward. He only gets to play with this ball when we're training, so it's a big deal to him
He was at the end of the line sniffing around when I called him to come, holding the ball. He looked at me, but didn't come. I gave the leash a pop to correct (we're using a prong as recommended by our trainer), but he was so engrossed in whatever he was sniffing that he still didn't come.
At this point I didn't know exactly what to do, but I knew that I had to do something or else it would reinforce his choice not to come, so I literally reeled
him back in to me. But of course, after all his sniffing around, the leash wasn't sitting where it should be (it was running between his legs along his body) so as I'm reeling he's coming in sideways, backwards, and every kind of which way... he finally gets to me, sideways, and we're both tangled in mountains of leash....
This can't be how you do it, is it?
We did this about 3 times before I gave up because it felt so ineffective...
I praised and played each time I reeled him in, but they were probably the slowest, ugliest, most awkward recalls you've ever seen!
Tesla's a year old and his shorter distance recall is beautiful - he'll come and sit right in front of me.
How do I use the long line effectively to reproduce this for his long distance recall? Is reeling part of the process or should I have done something different?