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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So since my husband surprised me with phoenix (8.5 months old) in December, I have been working REALLY hard to get her to come when called. In the house, she's great, in the yard, terriffic, at the off-leash park and the field by my house she's good. It's been difficult because my husband really doesn't help me with training, walking, etc. so it's up to me to be with the kids and the dog at all times (ironic since he bought her :rolleyesww:). But I thought that the come when called was getting better.

Now to the "situation" that happened on friday. I got my 5 year old daughter ready for her first "big-girl, all by herself" bday party, and brought Phoenix with us to walk her a few streets over to the party. I left my 7 year old son playing catch on the front lawn with 2 of my 15 year old step sons friends. We made it to the end of the street, crossed, and suddenly the prong collar is on the ground and the dog is running circles around us. My daughter starts bawling bc she is worried that her "sister" phoenix will be hit by a car, and because she just wants to get to the party. I am trying not to panick bc I think I'll be able to get her to come to me easier by calmly calling her. I try this, to no avail. 3 teenagers come walking towards us, freeze in fear when they see the loose dog, and phoenix makes a beeline toward them, circling them as well. They run across the road to the playground and climb the playground equipment. By this time a group of teenage boys playing basketball on the street come running over to help me get her. (I will never curse these boys for not moving out of the way of my car again). And my 7 year old and the 2 15 year olds he was playing with saw the commotion and come running as well. It took 20 mins of chasing and calling and coaxing and having her escape my grasp before she finally got tired and stopped to poop and I was able to slowly walk over to her and grab her and get the collar on her again! She even darted across the road twice, in front of a car!

I was exhausted, embarassed, felt like a failure as a dog owner (and parent bc my poor daughter was in tears and 30 mins late for her party) and I terrified my whole street! I don't EVER want this to happen again, so I need advice on two things (and I apologize for the long winded post, just needed to vent a bit). First, clearly in a situation with distractions, Phoenix will not come when called, (on top of the fact that she thought this was a game). So I need help with some sort of emergency recall that I can be confident this wont happen again. Second...the collar. My husband bought the prong about 4 weeks ago, because on the few times he walked her she pulled badly. Which is true, she does, she even learned to pull with the harness that we had bought after a few months. I don't have to correct her with the prong at all, she just walks better with it on. Should I abandon it? Or should I attach her regular day to day collar to it and use them both so I have a back up if it comes apart again? Please help with this because I am worried about walking her now....
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Thanks for the links...she is definitely ok - she had a great time! LOL

I was the one shaken up...

And I will use a back up from now on for SURE
 

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sufferin succotash
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Leerburg has a lot of free training videos. Have you started a general obedience class with her? Group training is great for both dog and owner. Here's a list of training clubs in AZ: Training Resources



Thanks for the links...she is definitely ok - she had a great time! LOL

I was the one shaken up...

And I will use a back up from now on for SURE
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Leerburg has a lot of free training videos. Have you started a general obedience class with her? Group training is great for both dog and owner. Here's a list of training clubs in AZ: Training Resources
She went to puppy classes so far and I'm in the process right now of trying to select a trainer and class for basic obedience. I think that she will definitely benefit from this, and will be enrolling her asap. I'm actually in Toronto tho...
 

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sufferin succotash
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LOL Sorry about that! I'm a little slow moving today.

Good luck. Keep us updated on her progress.

She went to puppy classes so far and I'm in the process right now of trying to select a trainer and class for basic obedience. I think that she will definitely benefit from this, and will be enrolling her asap. I'm actually in Toronto tho...
 

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Glad she's okay. I would definitely be sure you have a leash attached to a collar she can't slip out of. I like a martingale for that purpose (not a fan of a prong collar on a puppy anyway, but that's a different topic).

One thing that sometimes works in an emergency is to actually run *away* from your dog while you are calling her. Then the fun "chase game" is her chasing you (ideally into a fenced yard or the house) rather than you chasing her. Also, be sure that when you are calling her to come to you, you are very excited and happy, because that makes it so much more likely that she'll come. I know it's hard when you are scared, but if you use a scary voice, or sound angry, that will hurt your recall chances, too.
 

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I had something similar happen to me with Diesel. He slipped out of his harness and ran to the little boy I was watching luckily we were in a field but I knew that if I called his name and ran away from him he'd follow and surely enough he did because his mom was running away and naturally he had to come see where I was going :) keep working on her recall. I have a 25 foot leash that I put Diesel on outside and that's how we work on recall that way he can get far enough but can't actually run away.

It's a very scary situation I know what you mean. I thought I was going to have a heartattack when Diesel ran just make sure she knows that it's fun to come back to you. You have to be more fun then what she's trying to get too. Glad she's ok!
 

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mama2Phoenix - I have been an active member on DT for a full year now, and to be honest...ThkU for the detailed writeup, it is both captivating and the behaviour is fundamentally common & wrong... & heading South, on many fronts, IMO...there is a fix awaiting, takes time & effort & a band-aid solution is never fullproof.
I am not intending to sugar coat it (which doesn't help any, in fixing a dog motivational problem or real desire to please).
- and getting to the root problem...of your well described chaos street walk

I have my own opinions, what was structurally lacking...over & over.
I have one question that needs clearification:
WHAT HAVE YOU DONE IN TRAINING & PLAY, some family history, that builds bond & loving respect...daily ??
- given this shortfall (if any), Phoenix's reaction was probably somewhat very normal

While some here, have suggested...that anyone can train an easy dog (more or less)...and the humans methods are irrelevant / I beg to differ.
I see your dobe, exhibiting a lack of solid foundation (early on), and missing the knowledge of whom should be at the top of the family pack...as roles are getting reversed some (with the dog), in the absence of clear direction...from the 2 legged self-imposed leaders.

Following youtube video link, in my thread will show you a combination of canine eye and verbal ear focus & this example could have been easily filmed a decade ago, on my puppy. http://www.dobermantalk.com/general...ontrolled-off-leash-walking-city-streets.html
- I train without a prong* (used incorrectly) and without bribe treats* / because I can, and the results are cast in permanent stone (faster then not)

Phoenix can have a remarkable controlled improvement
But the solution lies in going back to square one...and having fun while being the best & fare friend (with clearly projected expectations).
It is not the harness or gismo you put on a dogs neck, that makes absolute 100% recalls, its all the good-fun stuff, that is harder to quantify...but works.

P.S. - Leerburg web site articles and free videos, are very good...while I don't agree with everything there*...please study them all.
 
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