Teach the dog to come back to recall


Why teach the dog to come back to recall?

In most cities it is now compulsory to walk dogs on a leash. Some town halls justify this decision by the risk of road accidents, others because of dog droppings not collected. For dogs classified as "dangerous", remember that the leash is mandatory in all circumstances on public roads.


It is still interesting, even vital, to teach your dog to reverse order. Your leash can slip out of your hands, break. The dog may succeed in putting his head through a collar that is too wide ...


It is also very pleasant to be able to let go of your dog at the beach or in the forest, so that he can exercise, have fun with his fellows. However, it is necessary to be able to retrieve it without having to run or shout for 20 minutes.


How to teach the dog to recall?

The recall is a difficult learning, especially with certain breeds of dogs (beagle, chow chow, shiba inu, akita inu ...). It will certainly take several weeks or even months of work before you achieve the desired result.


Of course with a labrador, a golden retriever or a cocker spaniel, it is easier. The recall is written in their nature.


There are several methods for learning to recall. We will detail the most basic but also the most dog friendly below.


This exercise should be started in a safe place. It can be your house or your garden. There is no risk of running away and external stresses are more limited. Once the results have been obtained, we can change the environment for a closed park, then the street with all its difficulties.


For safety, it is important to equip yourself with a 10 or 20 meter lanyard. It is best to work in pairs.


Start by sitting the dog or lying down (see our tips for training a dog to sit or our tips for training a dog to lie down)

Instruct the dog not to move (see our tips for training a dog not to move)

Back up slowly, facing the dog, walking backwards and keeping your hand out in front of you, palm facing the dog.

Stop about 5 meters and crouch down. Wait 5 seconds in this position.


Lots of dogs will rush towards you. Don't praise him! He should come to you only when you call him and not before. Such a mistake could lead to drama in the middle of the street. Gently put the dog back in place, step back again, and crouch in the same spot.


Once the 5 seconds have elapsed, call the dog by name with the command "Foot". Be very exuberant, especially if you have made the choice to work without food. The dog must find pleasure in obeying you.

If the dog doesn't come, depending on the animal, increase the encouragement, show him you have food in your hand, or back off a bit further. Even if the dog takes 10 minutes to reach you, praise him warmly, as if he had obeyed from the first second. If you punish him when he finally decides to come back, he won't come back ...

Once the dog is at your feet, sit it down and reward it according to the mode chosen (see our page on dog rewards).

Repeat the operation by moving further and further back

Repeat the operation with your back to the dog, then hiding behind a wall

Repeat the operation by multiplying the difficulties (congeners, various noises, multiple solicitations).

The electric collar:

Some dog trainers, particularly hunting dog trainers and boarding schools regularly use electric collars.


This utensil sends a more or less strong discharge to the dog, depending on the button you use on your remote control. Thus we punish the dog who refuses to obey or who gets too excited.


Almost all pet stores sell them, their price being very high. Some sellers will tell you that these collars do not hurt the dog. They will tell you that this one reacts to the sound preceding the discharge. Don't believe them.


This barbaric utensil has driven many dogs mad who end up shaving walls or becoming aggressive.


Electric collars are therefore totally prohibited during Canibest lessons.


Ultrasonic whistles:



Despite what we see in the movies, ultrasonic whistles do not naturally attract dogs. This utensil, not very audible for humans but very noticeable for the dog, allows a trained animal to be recalled, at a great distance, without having to howl and disturb everyone.


The dog will be able to discern the frequency of the whistle and will therefore perceive your command, even at great distances and in a noisy environment. It is therefore interesting to associate the sound of the whistle with your recall order.


To facilitate this learning, we advise you to repeat this exercise before each meal of the dog. Send your animal to its basket. Fill his bowl, wait a few seconds before calling him by the word "Foot". He will therefore associate this order with the most important moment of his day.


If you cannot recall your dog, contact our switchboard, a behavioral dog trainer will come to your home to help you train your dog gently.