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How to Teach Your Dog to Come When Called

When you call your dog, you expect them to come running towards you without any delay. But if your dog doesn’t respond to your call, it can be frustrating and even dangerous in certain situations. Teaching your dog to come when called is an essential skill that all dogs must learn. In this article, we will discuss the steps to train your dog to come when called.

Why Teaching Your Dog to Come When Called is Important

Teaching your dog to come when called can help you in many ways. It can prevent your dog from getting into dangerous situations, such as running into the street or chasing after other animals. It also allows you to give your dog more freedom when you take them off-leash. Moreover, it helps you establish a stronger bond with your dog.

Step-by-Step Guide to Teach Your Dog to Come When Called

Start with Basic Commands

Before teaching your dog to come when called, make sure they understand basic commands such as sit, stay, and come. This will make the training process much easier.

Choose a Cue Word

Choose a specific word or phrase that you will use consistently to call your dog. Use a positive and cheerful tone while calling them. For example, you can use “come,” “here,” or “let’s go.”

Use Positive Reinforcement

Positive reinforcement is the most effective method to teach your dog to come when called. Whenever your dog comes to you after you call them, reward them with praise, treats, or toys. This will encourage them to repeat the behavior.

Start Indoors

Start training your dog indoors where there are fewer distractions. Call your dog’s name and use the cue word to call them towards you. When they come, reward them with a treat or toy.

Gradually Increase Distractions

As your dog becomes more comfortable with the indoor training, gradually increase the distractions. Move to a quiet outdoor area and practice the same training. Once your dog gets used to the outdoor environment, add more distractions such as other people, dogs, or toys.

Use a Long Leash

When you start training your dog outside, use a long leash to ensure their safety. This will give you control over your dog and prevent them from running away.

Avoid Punishment

Avoid punishing your dog if they do not come when called. Punishment can make your dog scared and decrease their willingness to come to you. Instead, reward them for their good behavior.

Be Consistent

Consistency is key when training your dog. Use the same cue word and reward system every time you call your dog. Practice the training regularly, even after your dog has learned to come when called.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

  • Calling your dog’s name repeatedly without a cue word
  • Punishing your dog for not coming when called
  • Not rewarding your dog for coming to you
  • Using a negative or angry tone while calling your dog

Frequently Asked Questions


Teaching your dog to come when called is an important skill that all dogs must learn. It requires patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement. Start training your dog indoors, gradually increase distractions, and use a long leash when training off-leash. Avoid punishment and be consistent with your training. Remember, your dog’s safety depends on their ability to come when called.

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