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I have a fenced in backyard with a lot of plants and shrubs around the perimeter. I try to let me puppy go outside one last time before I go to work each morning and lately her nose has been throwing her off track. She starts exploring in the bushes and I don't have unlimited time. I have tried treats, calling her, raising my voice, and everything short of rolling around on the ground to get her to come but she insists on going through the thick brush. Eventually I have to just go in after her but lately she has started running from me when she sees me coming for her. I'm not quite sure what to do because I don't want a dog that is scared of me but I don't have time to sit there until she is finished smelling the entire yard. Occassionally running from her will get her to chase me and I think that is probably my best option but wanted to see if anyone had any other ideas. When her nose takes over, she may as well be completely deaf.
 

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perhaps you could put her on a lead or extension lead when you are taking her out for the loo before you go to work, and walk her round on that until she wees, and then come back in. That solves your problem of not having much time for when you are going off to work.
Then when you have more time you could let her out into the garden, have her favourite treats and practice the re-call with her. When she comes back to you really praise her and make a fuss (even if she has taken ages to come back!) and then let her go back off into the garden again... and keep repeating. She probably isnt coming back to you at the minute because she knows when she comes back to you, she will then have to stay in the house and she wont get to be in the garden any longer. So I would work on building the idea in her head that every time she comes back she wont have to go back in the house, she can just go back into the garden and play again.
 

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Yep.
Put her on a leash and take her out for the final wee break.
 

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I'm going through that right now. When Copper isn't listening reliably, he goes back on the leash. I try never to chase, it then becomes a game, and who doesn't like a game! He is just exploreing and learning about his environment. He doesn't know you have a schedule to keep. :)
 

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Believe it or not I recently found a dog whistle that I bought years ago and started training our guys with it. When they came to the whistle I would give them a treat. The other day they were out at the corner of the yard hanging over the fence barking at the neighbor and his dogs. (They want to go play with his dogs). I tooted twice on the whistle and they jumped down from the fence, turned and RAN on to the porch. Of course then I HAD to give them a treat.

I have never had a dog respond to the dog whistle before!!!
 

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Yep, I have to put Semper on the lead now when he goes out in the lane, as they get older they get more nosey and harder to get them back. The only other thing to try is to go in and shut the door, you'll probably find her stood right outside, mine hates being shut out!
 

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Oh My Gosh! Sunny would not come to me at all tonight. Normally after a few claps she will come back. I had to get a flashlight and make circles on the side of the house. Then, of course, noisy butt had to investigate and hubby grabbed her.

I'm seriously thinking of the shock collar. I hate the thought but the thought of Sunny getting injured seems far greater. :(
 

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we had Rio e-collar trained when he was 9 months and I always use it when we are off leash in the fields - not just as a gentle reminder to come (ours has a 400 yard range), but as a safety tool if we come across a coyote or he gets his nose on some aggressive animals. if you are considering using an e-collar just remember your dog must first know how to come or heel. there is plenty of info out there (on the net) about e-collar training a quick read will help you plan your approach to this device. if done incorrectly an e-collar could have adverse effects on your dog. bambam offered some great tips in this thread as a start.
 

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I had the exact same problem with Samm when she was younger...had a trainer come out to address a number of things. This being one of them.

This was the easiest fix I have ever seen. Take 2 or 3 hand towls...roll them up long ways and put a hair band at each end and one in the middle. your basically making an extension of your arm.

The only word you need to use is "inside" that's it. not here, not come, not come on, not her name,,,,nothing but "INSIDE"- and say is with some force.

When she doesn't obey simply hurl a towel at her...or more-less behind her...just close enough to let her know you mean business. She will run all over the yard...just keep picking up the towels and throwing them until she is inside. VERY IMPORTANT - Have someone inside to praise her and give her a big welcome...then you follow in and do the same. this way she know your not mad at her, but when you say "inside" that it, it's time to go in. repeat this maybe one or two more times and wa-la....done deal.

Hope this helps!
SP
 

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When Clyde was little I would take him to the dog park (which is very wooded) and when he was not looking I would hide in the woods and just sit there until he could find me. When he would hyperfocus on something I would call his name if he did not come. I would hide again. My goal was to teach him..you need to stick with me because I am not going to come after you and he has always been good about coming when I call, even if he is running with a pack of dogs at the dog park. Granted, you need the right setting and plenty of time but it did not take long, they learn so quick!
 

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I am now having a similar problem with Pacer. He is 9 mths and he will come in some situations but not in others. I am currently in my 3rd set of obedience classes and today we had a major blow out. If we are outside and he is running off lead and I yell his name and come, he comes sprinting, provided there are no distractions. Sometimes he will come with distractions if I say his name and come AND walk the other way, but this is not 100% effective. I practice with him inside but he is pretty much outright defiant. I will make him stay, walk to the other side of the room and say his name and come and he will either look around as if I don't exist or just walk away. I have started going over and grabbing his collar/leash and making him come. I thought we were making some progress because the first time we practiced it at class today he actually listened (I was so excited and praised the heck out of him). But, after that it was like he flipped a switch and decided "hmm, I don't feel like listening to you any more." The trainers kind of take a tough love approach and we use a pinch collar, so the next time I said come and he didn't come, they told me to go over, grab his collar and snap and keep saying come until I got him to where I wanted him to come. Pacer decided that he didn't want to do that so he rolled over on the ground, playing dead almost, and wouldn't get up. I tried to pick him up and he started nipping at me. He actually scraped me with his teeth hard enough to draw a little blood. The trainer let me stay after and she was working with me. She is very tough and kept yanking on the collar and in a very stern voice saying sit, stay and then working on come using a flexy leash. Pacer still wasn't listening very well but he got to the point that his tail was tucked and he was shaking (because the trainer was so stern). I don't know much about training but should that be happening? I should also say he nipped at the trainer once too. I don't know where this behavior is coming from and it only appears when we work on recall and he doesn't feel like doing it. I felt horrible when I left today because Pacer was shaking and looked really scared, but at the same time he had nipped at two people! He hasn't done that in 6 months! I guess I am just wondering if I am handling the situation correctly? And, if the timid/shaking/tail tucked behavior is typical, or is that too stern? Also, what else can/should I be doing?
 

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@minnere This negative re-inforcement training Pacer has been getting is very distressing. I have concluded with my 8-month-old Vizsla CJ that this does not work. It may get your dog to do certain things -- but she's afraid of you. Please get another trainer!

This worked for me and CJ (and we're still working on it):

I had trouble with CJ coming to me in the dog run here in New York and I had to chase her down a couple of times just to get her out, but a trainer helped me out with these tips.

Do the come/touch voice-hand signal command -- and if the dog blows you off, COME CLOSER, even beside the dog if you have to. Be very patient. And then always give treats. Your goal is: when the dog comes to you, he needs to know that this will result in the best thing he has ever experienced in his life. Furthermore, he needs to know that YOU are that one person that will give him the best experience of his life every single time. With that in mind, make sure your treats are great. For CJ, I decided that I'll give her some fried chicken/roasted turkey/meatballs.

Also, make the come/touch command a game. When he starts running to you (when you get to that stage) run back a little, so he's chasing you.

For CJ, at first coming to me when I leave the dog run was difficult, but when she finally went to the gate with me, I made sure she got a "jackpot" of treats. It's been almost two weeks that I've been doing this, and now she's been enthusiastically running to the gate to me since she knows she'll get some wonderful thing from me.

I hope this helps and maybe you can tailor your methods for Pacer. But please, no more negative re-inforcement. You'll feel better, your dog will feel better.
 

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Thank you for your input. You have just reinforced my feelings that this is not the right trainer for us. I know dogs live in the moment but I've felt terrible all day for having put him through that.

I like your ideas and I will have to try that. We are having coyote problems in our neighborhood so getting him to come immediately when called is super important!
 

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I'm no expert, but my little experience with our V pup and reading reinforces Vs are softer than a lot of other breeds. I think this type of harsh training will end up doing more harm than good. I think your dogs reaction in class was a clear message that this method of training is not for him. I would find a trainer who uses positive training methods & not punishment. Best wishes!
 

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Hi Minere. Good on you for deciding that Pacer wasn’t happy with that kind of training. It sounds as though he was quite scared/ intimidated and that was why he nipped. The lying down, tucking his tail wasn't working to tell the humans that he was scared so he used the next communication tool he had - teeth. Good luck finding a better trainer, I hope you find one that makes the class fun for you as well as the dog.

Something that might make you feel better about his lack of responsiveness…… We had one dog in our class at one stage (a golden retriever) that whenever we did an off leash heel exercise would leave his owner and go and sit next to the instructor. The instructor ignored him and never rewarded him for doing that but it kept happening. She thought that perhaps the dog was choosing to be with the “least stressed” person in the room. The rest of us, particularly his owner, were all busy worrying about whether our dogs would do the right thing or not - the instructor was the only relaxed person there. It might be the same with Pacer, you are really keen for him to come to you and then also frustrated because he isn’t. It might appear to him that you are upset or angry for some reason but he doesn’t know why, he just knows that he wants to be as far away as possible from the upset person (not realising that he is making it worse).

Also, the looking away could just indicate that he doesn’t understand and is confused with the situation. Merc does that a lot when I’m trying to teach him something new. If he doesn’t get it he will look at the floor, the ceiling, a bit of dust floating by – anything that is easier than what is in front of him and I just have to wait till his brain re-focuses. Of course, at other times I have seen him look at me when I call him, think about it, and then decide that the thing he is smelling is more interesting than me ;)
 

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When Sunny goes out without being on a leash she takes off and WILL NOT come back. The walking up to her doesn't work because we can't even get close to her. We trick her to get her to come in. :-[

She starts obedience classes this month. BTW, she is 8 months. Did I wait too long?

Thanks for any suggestions.
 

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Thanks for all of the suggestions. I have found another trainer that works specifically with V's, so I think once this class is done (since I already paid for it) I am going to start working with her. She understands the breed really well.

Mercutio, you are probably right in that my frustration shows and that is why he doesn't come. At home, I always make it more like a game, or use treats. I guess I should try to act more like that during the class and see what happens. He is by far the youngest pup in the class and does everything else really well. I am a school teacher and I told my husband (since he is unable to make it to classes with me) that the best way I can describe Pacer's behavior when it comes to recall during class is like a student with an extremely high IQ, but is failing your class because they are bored with it and no matter what tactic you use they just don't feel like doing the work because it isn't fun, nor is it a challenge. V's are so smart and energetic that I just think he is bored with that portion of the class. IDK maybe I'm misjudging the situation. We worked on the recall more this weekend and he did great at home.

Thanks for all of the advice.
 

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Hi, I'm curious if you have any updates since you started w. the new trainer? My 5 month-old puppy is also sporadically defiant. I think it is more about dominance than anything else so I'm trying a few things related to that. We are starting obedience classes this weekend.
Thanks!
 
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