View Full Version : Training came in handy this time!!

21st June 2008, 01:02 AM
We started group beginning training classes a few weeks ago at Pet Smart. It is all based on positive reinforcement and never on punishment. Last week, our class covered working on recall when a dog gets away from you. We were told to use the dog's name and COME, in an excited, high pitched tone that would get the dogs attention, then when the dog returns, reward with "jackpot." (Jackpot is when you excitedly tell your pup what a good girl she is, while feeding numerous tiny treats one at a time.) This is so the dog knows that if she returns promptly, she will be rewarded with love, attention and lots of tasty treats.

They also said to never chase a dog, but get their attention, and have them come to you, or even chase you to get the treats. Never say bad dog or act upset when they return, or next time they will think twice about coming back. It has to be all about the exciting reward to the dog.

Well, this morning I had the front door open a bit to sign for a delivery, and out Dottie went, running toward the street. I panicked and instead of saying "come" I screamed, COOKIE, COOKIE!!!! over and over and she turned tail and ran right back into the house. I of course praised her and rewarded her jackpot of treats for coming back. It worked like a charm (though I think COME would have been mildly interesting and not brought her back.) Now I reserve the word COOKIE for when I need her to come right back to me. I will of course be more careful next time the door is open, but at least I learned something that was very useful today!!

Mom of Jato
21st June 2008, 03:08 AM
Whew- I bet that was scary!!! Thank goodness she loves her cookies and came running back to you. :luv:

Cathy T
21st June 2008, 03:28 AM
Ah...the magic of the word "cookie" :) Glad it worked and everything is okay.

21st June 2008, 08:03 AM
oh thank goodness she came back to you! fast thinking ;)

21st June 2008, 09:12 AM
Oh good on you for your quick thinking, and yes it doesn't matter what the word is, if it gets the dog running back to you, then stick to it.

At my dog club, one of our trainers told us that her dog would not respond to the word "drop" which is the word we use when we want to dog to go to ground. She said she realised that somewhere along the way the word "drop" has lost its meaning, if it ever had one. So she decided to use the word "bam" and apparently her dog drops like a charm when this word is used.

So yeah, I'd be sticking with "cookie". Glad it ended well. :)

21st June 2008, 09:28 AM
"Dylan come" in a firm tone works for me but if that is ignored "look" works for us. This happened because when "come" was ignored, I'd say "look" and show a treat!! :rolleyes:

Cathy Moon
21st June 2008, 02:29 PM
I'm so glad you were able to get her attention. What a relief that she's safe and sound. :lotsaluv: