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Friday, September 05, 2008

Training Trick: Staying in Yard

Chocolate Pup Relaxing in Yard: Dakota
Do you ever wonder how some people's dogs can roam around free in a non-gated yard and yet you can't keep your dog from bolting out the front door and down the block?

It takes training of course but it can be done... the Lab Brats are proof of that. I can work on my front yard and the they will walk the perimeter or the yard and then lay down to watch everything unfold around them. No running, no bolting.

Although I started the pups on this training from the first time they started wearing leashes, it will work with almost any dog - as long as you have consistent and persistent training. Here's how:

Teaching your dog to stay in the yard
You can easily teach your dog to not run and stay in a yard that is not fenced. It takes work but both of my girls never run out the door nor step a foot off the property.

1) What you have to do is train him to stay in the yard while on a lead. Hang around your front yard and then walk the perimeter. Every time his foot goes outside your yard boundary, give him a quick tug (don't pull him in but just a quick snap on the leash) in the direction you want him to go in and say "Yard". When he steps back in the yard, give him a small treat or praise him softly with a pat on the head.

Keep doing this 15 minutes a day and then when you feel comfortable, you can leave him on the lead but out of hand and work on giving the command that way. Soon enough, you can have your dog in the yard and not wander when you are around.

Of course, never let your dog outside without you present as this will give him too much freedom to be bad.

2) When in the house, never let him push you at the door. Always get him to sit and stay before opening any door to the outside and walk in front of him when going through the doorway (telling him "ok" to follow when you want). This shows your alpha status and lets him know to follow your command when a door is open to the outside world.

This is just the beginning steps to training your Labrador Retriever to stay by your side no matter where you are. All training goes hand-in-hand so remember to maintain a positive training attitude in your house and remind your pup who is in charge.

It is a great comfort to be able to bring my pups outside with me and not worry about them crossing the street or darting in front of a car. This training is so well worth the time that you will wonder why you didn't try it sooner.



Anonymous Kim said...

Great article! I have a pet Labrador, he's much whiter than yours, and is fond of the yard usually.

March 12, 2009 7:54 PM  

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