Features September 2015 Issue

The 12 Rules of Rocket Recall

Cold Nose College rocket recall

1. Train it! Practice it!

2. Use the reinforcers that have the highest value for your dog for recall practice.

3. Reward ALL check-ins during other times of the day (a check-in is any time your dog chooses to visit you of his own accord).

4. Don’t call a dog for anything he doesn’t or won’t like (such as trimming nails).

5. Don’t call your dog if you don’t think he will come (i.e., if your dog is riveted by a twitching squirrel).

6. If you make a mistake on #5, “save” the recall by going to get your dog, encouraging her to move with you, and then rewarding her.

7. Don’t repeat the cue! Say it only once, then make yourself as interesting as possible, “squeaking” in a high-pitched voice, clapping, jogging away, etc.

train dog to come when called

8. Never, ever, punish your dog if she doesn’t come to you.

9. HUGE payoff – always give lots of treats or something novel and special when your dog returns to you.

10. Maintain it after you train it! Practice at least three times a week for life.

11. Play Hide & Seek.

12. Play the Recall & Release Game.

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