View Full Version : telling off! how do you do it?

8th February 2007, 10:45 PM
tonight jadan who is now 11 months took off! he had never done this before now. he has always been off the lead except maybe for a while when he was done but has always come back. tonight he went after a cat, weird as he lives with one and she doesnt bother him. he went outside our normal area which he has always stayed in and just shot off. i could hear him barking away. when he did eventually come back i was a bit confused as what to do. i have read that if you tell them off then they think they have done wrong by coming back or that next time they will get told off so take longer etc. so i just put him on lead took him home and ignored him for a good half hour. but honestly i didnt know what to do as he hadnt done it before. he has always been good at recall in the house and garden and i have to make sure i have a really tasty treat when we are out. what should i have doneam i really going to have to keep him on a lead now at all times. there is no where that is secured enough to let him off that i know of locally. i havemet owners with dogs who are never off there leads incase they run off and have never been off at all. but jadan loves to run, he smiles, you know what i mean. i would hate to think that he has to stay on lead from now on. can anyone help? :(

8th February 2007, 10:50 PM
I think that Cavaliers are very easily distracted.

The cat that he lives with isn't as much fun as a "stranger".

Our Charley chased birds, squirrels and cats.....all the time.

If he wasn't in our fenced backyard, he was either on leash or tethered.

When we garden, we have a very long outdoor leash....he was and Mary Alice will ALWAYS be on it.

They can move all around the front garden (not fenced) with comfort.

They can run around but not get away....but we never leave them out alone.

Good luck, it's hard......I wouldn't "tell him off" at this point, he won't understand. ;D

8th February 2007, 10:51 PM
There is no such thing as 100% reliable recall. I do not let my pups off leash unless we are in a completely fenced or enclosed area. I've witnessed one fatal accident and don't want to see another, so maybe I'm paranoid.

Can you fence your yard or portion of it?
If not, what about an invisible fence (uh-boy!)?
Is there a dog park nearby?
What about a line on a trolley?

Good luck!

9th February 2007, 12:07 AM
All dogs have something they will run after. Also, dogs that have been fine when young on recall often stop returning as they get older unless you keep working with them -- also he is abpout at the rebellious age anyway and may well just ignore you to test you anyway.. Do you still reward him every few times when he returns on recall? If you don't, it is probably becoming something he places no real value on as a command if you are not reminding him and reinforcing that returning when called is an excellent thing to do and has benefits for him. I always takes some treats on walks in the park and will call and reward the dogs several times during the walk making it a happy game. Not just one time but numerous times. :)

Now as for this incident: why would you want to scold a dog who has returned to you? It isn;t his fault he found a cat interesting to chase -- it is quite common for dogs who have their own cats, so to speak, to be quite happy to chase everyone else's. But in returning to you, he did right, not wrong. Hence there is nothing to punish. :) The fact that he would not come when called reflects instead, a failure to keep reinforcing the value of the recall command, and also perhaps reflects that (as happens with us all at some point!) you were too confident about his ability to return, this never having really been tested by a distraction or this particular distraction. Part of teaching recall is to place the dog in distracting situations and then practicing recall on a long lead -- so that other people, dogs, cats, squirrels, food are not more important a paying attention to you. :) The other thing is -- obedience generally needs practive for a dog to stay sharp and fcused. You can't just teach a command and then presume the dog will always respond. A dog needs ideally, daily practice in a whole range of obedience commands -- sit, down, downstays, maybe some fun clicker practice, recall... says for 15 minutes in the garden or in the house.

The more you do by way of obedience or anything that requires you and your dog to work together -- agility, clicker, obedience classes at various levels -- the more reliable your dog becomes and the more responsive and respecting of you.

Jadan shouldn't be off lead if you are anywhere there is traffic, never, ever. Not even if he has what you think is perfect recall. Cavaliers ARE easily distracted and many -- as Jadan has proven -- have a strong prey instinct. This is risking a tragic ending unless you can find a safe place to take him off lead.

It is hard to believe there isn't anywhere near you where you could safely let him off lead. Most towns have football fields at schools etc that are well away from traffic. That would be a good place to take him on a long lead and start working on recall with him again. Then, when you are more confident in him again, let him have his run. But it is much better also to teach him to fetch and retrieve so that if you do have him off lead, he has something to actually DO that both wears him out and keeps him focused on returning to you and doesn;t require running hundreds of yards away where he might not even hear your call (remember many cavaliers have some hearing impediment too!). A 25 or 30 foot long lead will give him *plenty* of room to run and keep him safe, too; another option. Lily gets all the running she needs on an extensa lead. So there are numerous choices that won't risk Jadan's life. :thmbsup:

The good thing is you have discovered this concern without anything tragic happening which lets you now focus on addressing it and finding safer ways of taking him out. :)

9th February 2007, 09:14 AM
thanks for those pointers. jadan has been very good of lead so far as he has always been given a treat to come back to but more and more often he is ttesting us as he will try going farther and farther but up till this time he always came back. i didnt tell him off for coming back, well not verbally i suppose. i just ignored him as i was so angry that he probably felt my disatisfaction anyway. my PMT probably plays a factor in this, i dont think it coincidence that he seams to know when this is ;) he was in our park area next to our house which is a football/cricket recreation ground but there are at least 7 exits off this all of which go onto roads of some sort. not major ones but even so roads. the most he has done before is go half wayand then come back but this time he went all the way out into someones back yard and ended up at the far side of the field while we were still searching where he had last been. only his excited bark gave his position away. and all this on the one night he didnt have his high vis collar on!!! our back yard is only small so not much of a run off even if it is
secure. there really doesnt seem to be anywhere that hasnt been fenced off dog friendly. he is small enough to get through hedge gaps etc. im not sure whether when he has run off that rewarding him for coming back has just reenforced that his running off was ok because he came back so now goes further and further. i agree that a long training leesh is probably in order. he has a retractable one but that isnt too long. also will make more effort on the other training points you mentioned. his little friend and other pups (cavs)i have seen just run around there owners but he seems to be sooo brave and adventurous and goes further and further. each treat seams to reenforce that that is good!!! anyway i am late for work so had better get going. thanks again.

Harley & Carley
9th February 2007, 02:38 PM
Do you have a neighbor that has a fenced in area? Our yard is not fenced either, but many of my neighbos do have fenced in yards. I have just made arrangements to borrow their yard several times/day and let the girls run to their hearts content. Maybe that is an option for you.

9th February 2007, 07:16 PM
all the houses are the same in my road. the garden is taken up with garages and sheds all up one side. its annoying really as i know my sister has a really big garden and only 20 min walk away but she had a pup the same time as jadan and had to give him away as he grew too big (not her fault but her hubby!) he was a doberman. i can sometimes take him round but it upsets her as she felt she gave one of her kids away. i will look into other areas online and see what comes up. if you have a dog park then you are sooo lucky. wish they could do them here. have brought an extra long 8 meter leash to give him a bit more freedom and will change his treat to something more juicy i think. keep that as his outdoor treat only.will also do more training. i know i have been lappsing in this as he is such a good boy in the house. doesnt chew shoes anymore. toilet trained. loves his hugs. eats well etc. (touch wood on all those). getting off the running off issue....what do you guys do as a telling off at other times that might be needed. do you just crate them for time out?!!! i would be interested as so many people have diffent ways but we all have the same breed. goodness me this is long, but i want to learn for jadans sake. he gets loads of praise for doing well but there must be things that yours do that have a consiquence, i mainly ignore him is this right and is there anything else for other situations? :sl*p:

10th February 2007, 02:54 AM
Just a side note because I haven't seen it mentioned...you do know to never run after the dog, right? That only makes then run further away because they think that you are playing their game.

I'm thankful for a fairly large fenced back yard. Wallis fell in the pool the first night we were here - it was on her blind eye side and she didn't see it. But she swam for the steps. I have purposely put the other dogs in the pool just to make sure they know what it is and hopefully would know which way to swim if they were to fall in.

Good luck - I know how aggravating it can be when they won't come on command. That's when you have to remember that you are human and he is a dog. :D

10th February 2007, 03:52 AM
If you say "Ahh, Ahh" in a stern way, that'll let the doggie know that you're not impressed with whatever they're up to.....that's what I do, just lower my voice a few octaves.

I haven't found cavvies to need much "telling off", once they're trained, they are easy to get along with because they want so much to please.

They can be little rascals but nothing that a lowered voice can't control.

Mary Alice is a super rascal but even she responds to "Ahh, Ahhh". :)

10th February 2007, 04:06 AM
I guess because she's the youngest of the group Sasha is my most rowdy. My Cavaliers sound so different from all of yours.

I've watched the Dog Whisperer several times and have used his "Psssst" sound at Sasha. It will make her stop barking at the cat (she considers him to be a threat for some reason), stop chewing her feet, etc. Just a different kind of sound that gets her attention.

10th February 2007, 06:56 AM
Well I'm a black belt in taekwondo so I usually just kick him across the room.

just kiddin! Usually calling his name followed by a stern "nooooo" will do the trick. My pup is such a sensitive little fellow. I've read its bad to use their name in a negative way i.0.e yelling it at them when he doin something bad.

10th February 2007, 10:55 AM
yep i certainly got the hang of not chasing him right at the beginging ;)
i too use the ahh ahhh when he has done something and yes it does work and i also lower my voice when he really needs to listen ;) this works appart from if he has had a mad moment and is soooo excited that i could dangle a whole string of sausages infront of him and he wouldnt notice he is sooo engrossed in his chase or found something more delectable :yuk: ( well ok maybe not a string of sausages, that WOULD make him stop :) ) this works if he has finally given up what he is doing or if he has nowhere else to run too. he is very good at "wait" and this has helped A LOT, (except last night when he had very selective hearing) but again needs reenforcing with BIG distractions, ie birds etc :sl*p: at least i know i am using the same techniques as you all so that is a comfort :p i took him out last night (night after the incident) and even though he was on the extending lead i didnt have the stopper on so he could go as he pleased but he stayed by my side teh WHOLE time! :D didnt even go barmy in the usual bird nesting spots or bark once or try to get away. i think he got the message last night that mum was NOT happy (he hates being ignored :( )but will make sure in re-enforce all our training and not get so complacent this time. he loves his new treats, just need to see if they love him!! he is more liable to this at night time i think because he cant see properly as he will bark at things at night that normaly in the day he would ignore.

10th February 2007, 06:33 PM
One thing I just remembered that the breeder must have used with Tibby and other dogs and I just happened to come across by accident. If I am trying to pick her up or if she is just trying to run the other direction for whatever reason a very stern "Stop" will put her on her belly right then. She's a little Nervous Nellie; even though we've had her for at least 4 years those 3 years of a bad life have stayed in her mind. She's very submissive to hubby and very nervous with me.

I think the key here is to find one particular word or sound and stick with it.

I wasn't assuming you were not smart enough to know not to run after her, but sometimes that is our first instinct. ;)

Sharon 7
10th February 2007, 11:30 PM
I relate to the running away!!
My little darling darted out my front door when I was coming in with the mail, I was distracted and off she went. Swoosh!! ( I am sure she is part greyhound) :D
I was calling (yes, wrong I know) she was heading for the roads of "no return" (that's what I was thinking at the time).
I don't know what made me do it, but I dropped to the ground and she noticed, and ran straight back to me, to investigate. :wggle: I didn't know to hit her or hug her. Naturally I didn't hit her, I never do.
My heart was pumping like mad. I thought this time I think she is gone.

11th February 2007, 03:04 PM
its so great to know that others are out there in the same boat. and tips on what you do are handy too. took jadan for a country walk today and had planned on keeping him on the lead all the way specially as i had the 8 meter one. but we got to a point where a fence ran along on both sides which we hadnt been to before except on bike rides before we got jadan. i showed jadan a nice bit of treat in my poket and then let him off the lead....well i sort of knew he couldnt go anywhere :) :D :) until we came upon a bit of fence that had been bought down by the wind a few weeks ago :oops: well he was fine!!!! :p :p :p just carried on running up and down the path to us and i would tell him to wait and he did, most of the time stock still till we caught up with him and others would just snif about where he was till we caught up. at one point he took off round the corner and we thought here we go as he was barking away like he does when he is giving chase but funnily enough he didnt sound like he was moving. we got round the corner and he was just running round in circles waiting for us. cant tell you how happy it made us :p :p he was such a good boy. anyway, i still dont trust him in our park as its too close to home and i think he has gotten a bit too cocky round there :? stepped up on the home training and def make him sit and so on for everything...well not everything....my cuddles come for free :flwr: