Teaching the Come Command
Teaching your dog to “come” when called is one of the most important life skills any canine must master.
In fact, reliable recall training is more than just convenient – it can save a dog’s life!
Imagine this: your beloved pup gets off leash. Or the front door is left open by accident. Suddenly, your dog is running around outside as traffic speeds past. Yikes! If your dog has no recall training, this can quickly become a dangerous situation.
Luckily, the canine experts at ABBIDOT are here with all the information pet parents need to successfully teach the come command. Plus, our online store has products which incorporate the latest developments in technology to help with all your dog training needs.
Let’s get started!
What Is Reliable Recall?
First, let’s talk about reliable recall. Basically, this refers to a dog’s ability to obediently return to your side, no matter what. There could be distractions (such as children, other dogs, cars, squirrels, food) and yet when you say, “Come!” your dog loyally runs back to your side.
How to Teach the Come Command in 5 Easy Steps
Puppies and adult dogs alike can learn the come command.
It’s easy! All you need are the following items:
- High-value dog treats (like chicken, cheese, or hotdog bites)
- Enclosed area
Step 1: Choose a safe location
Start by picking a good place to begin your training. This should be an area that is quiet, away from distractions, and controlled. For example, a fenced in backyard. Don’t have one? No problem. Indoor training works too.
Step 2: Stay 10 – 15 feet away
Next, let your dog explore. Give them free time to walk, sniff, and be at ease. You want to be standing approximately 10 or so feet away with your body facing them. Make sure their collar is on – just in case.
Step 3: In a Loud and Happy Voice, Say “Come!”
Third, let’s get your dog’s attention! Try to make eye contact with your dog. When they are looking at you, in a cheerful voice, ask them to “Come!” You can also substitute this word with “Here!”
Step 4: Reward
Did your dog come running? Great! Feed them a yummy treat and reward for showing good listening skill by generously showering them with positive praise, like rubs, kisses, and play. The idea is to make your dog realize that when they hear the “Come!” verbal cue, something good will follow (like delicious treats).
Step 5: Practice, Practice, Practice
Lastly, continue rehearsing the “Come!” command with your dog. The more regularly you both practice, the faster they will learn this mandatory life skill. Try to practice for 5-minute intervals every day of the week. Soon, your pooch will be ready to try in other locations, such as the local dog park or at the beach.
Just remember to be careful. Never let your dog off leash in areas of heavy traffic and always practice in a fenced in area, until they are ready to be trusted.
Before long, your dog will obediently come when called, every single time!
Keep training sessions short. Dogs learn best when they have multiple opportunities to practice new skills spread over time. This reinforces the desired behavior. Quick, happy, fun sessions are the #1 way to train your dog.
Want more PAW-SOME dog training ideas?
Read more on the ABBIDOT blog.