Today was a spectacular weather day! I think it got to be about 50 degrees (at least) the sun was shining and I am so blessed to literally work 5 minutes from home. I decided for lunch I would run home, grab the dogs and take them back to the park to try my reliable recall again.
It was a much easier walk in today, some areas of the park actually has visible ground; while some areas still have snow. For the most part the hiking was easy. I admit I wasn’t as diligent with calling the dogs to me as I was on Sunday, part of the reason is that they didn’t really get too far ahead of me and most of the time they stick together.
I did discover a couple of things about the reliable recall, 1) you should not be too close to your dog when you use the “Yahoo,” because Delilah completely ignored me. 2) When you use the recall, you need to be really excited and really shout it, “YAHOOOOOOO!!!” then they come running.
If you haven’t been working with your dog on coming when called, you probably want to start in the house and begin calling your dog to you and rewarding them when they do. Once you have them responding in the house you can move to the yard and continue there.
If you are like me and so excited to try new things and have no patience to wait, and you have never had your dog off leash, I would suggest attaching either a leash or a small rope (thickness depending on the size of your dog,) you can make the rope as long as you want, I think at least 6 to 8 feet, but you could go even longer. Tie a knot in the rope every foot/foot and a half, this will keep your foot from slipping should you have to step on the rope to snag your dog.
Take your dog somewhere where you can let the dog loose, but the dog cannot escape; if you have a baseball diamond nearby that would probably be ideal. Let your pup drag the rope or lead and start training! Above all be patient and have fun!