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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, haven't been on here in a long time... Some of you may remember when we got Ringo about 6 months ago. Well, today he is a beautiful, almost grown up boy who behaves very well at home. He won't even touch his food until we give him permission to. But outside it's a whole different story. One problem is that whenever we let him off his leash outside, he behaves horribly! He'll run away from us, grab anything he can find, and will NOT come to us when we call. Nothing we've tried works. We crouch down and call to him with excited tones, "Ringo, come! Treat!" That works at home, he knows what treat means... But it does not work outside! :( We've decided that from now on we won't let him off the leash. But is this the solution? Some people say it's because he's young and that he'll outgrow it. Is this so with Goldens? What else can we do? This is a big problem for us because we'd like to be able to let him enjoy himself off leash, but at this point it seems that he's not giving us a choice... Your advice is welcomed. Thank you.
 

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Super Moderator
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Has he had obedience training? In order to be able to trust him offleash even in safe areas it is crucial that he comes when you call even with distractions. To teach this, start using a long lead and call him to you saying come one time and treating and or praising him when he comes. If he ignores you, pop the leash to give him a correction. It takes patience but does work. Maybe a round of obedience classes will work so he learns to always be watching you.
 

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Daisy - my heart
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Your dog is 6-7 months old? He's still very much a puppy, full of energy and mischief. Yes, he will outgrow this with maturity but you need to work on your recall. Others here will chime in on that, I haven't been 100% successful with it myself. I can say that when I really, really want her to come, I use the hot dog recall :)curtain:). I don't know how she learned that, but she did, very early on ... I just say to her, "Want a Hot dog?" And she comes running, every time!

Patience is good ... another 6-7 months and you'll notice a dramatic change in his behavior. They do get easier with age :)
 

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I'll just echo what's already been said. Never let him off leash until you have trained a reliable recall. Use a long line, 30 or 50 feet, call him and then reel him in if he doesn't come voluntarily. When he gets back to you PRAISE, PRAISE, PRAISE, and treat, make it a party when he comes no matter how reluctantly he returned. It will take lots of practice and time, but he will eventually learn.
 

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Love my Golden Boys!!
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There are far more experienced people on the Forum than myself that have better advice...but what we did with our puppies is take them over to the nearby hockey rink (which is enclosed) and practiced their recall there. It allowed them time off leash to run freely and they were safe from vehicular traffic. Once we were comfortable with their recall, we let them run in the soccer field. It is pretty much hidden from traffic as well. We have recently introduced whistle training to them for their recall. We found if they got playing or strayed a little further than what we were comfortable with, they couldn't hear us call to them. What we further learned on the Forum, is not to say "come" when we planned on leashing them back up as it signified the end of their play time (and they don't particularly like that). We use "let's go". They have been very receptive to the whistle but I should also add that they do understand and respond to "come" in other situations. This might not be the ideal situation but it has and is working for us.

Good luck with Ringo!!!
 

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One thing my trainer told me, is that until your dog is solid on recall and unless the dog is in danger you should not use your recall command unless you can enforce it. This teaches the dog that come means only sometimes. I am a frequent hiker and backpacker, and plan on doing this a lot with my dog so I need a great recall, so this is the "trick" I work on most of all.
 

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Daisy - my heart
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I have noticed with Daisy that her recall is much improved when we're in the woods or walking along a river trail out and about. I'm still very careful with her because she's not 100% but she's 9 years old next month so I think we're doing okay ... but has anyone else noticed that the more freedom your dog has, the better their recall? I find that interesting.
 

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Momma to angel Cody
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Find an enclosed field of some sort (here, it's fenced Little League fields), get a long line (hardware store for 100 feet and a clip on the end...costs about $6-8), and let your pup off lead in the enclosed area with the lead attached. Take high value treats for the initial training. Before you start, use up some puppy energy playing chase the ball (use a tennis racquet to send it sailing so your pup has to run a distance) or some other form of play. When you clip on the long line, call the dog almost immediately and treat. Let him get a bit further away, repeat. Don't spend more than ten minutes a session or the pup will get bored and stop responding appropriately.
 

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Dog Lover for Life
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How does your day look like? How much training a day do you do with your dog? How do you motivate your dog to perform the obedience lessions?
What do you do with your dog together to become a team?
How about teaching tricks with a clicker as a game? Also I think you have to teach him again from the ground up the come comand. But call it something diffrent. Make it fun for him to come to you, like play ball or send him back and forth between you and your husband/friend for treats.
Make sure you give the comand when you know that your dog will come to you. Don't make it iffy. Up the obedience like heel, sit, stay. Make him work for his food. Instead of feeding at home take his food with you on walks and have him work for it. Let him surch for his food keep him busy.
All the best,
Elke, ZsaZsa and Bogart
 

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shadow friend
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Your biggest flaw in logic here is that your pup is grown up if he's 8 months old. I know my Max looks big and grown up but he's still very much a puppy and will be until 2 to 3 years old. So readjust your thinking, and everything will be fine. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks so much for the helpful comments. We are going to try the suggestions mentioned to use a long lead and to start training again from the ground up, as well as other very helpful tips you all provided. Finding an enclosed area here will be difficult, but we will try to see what we can find. It's an obvious fact to us that he's still young at just 8 months old, but we just weren't sure whether or not he would grow out of the rebellious outside behavior. Thank you for the positive reassurance and suggestions. We will get to work on this asap and will post an update in the future. :)
 
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