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Recall, or coming when called, is an incredibly useful skill for all dogs to have. While it’s often used to keep your pup safe when exploring off-leash, you can also use it when your dog is playing with other dogs to keep the play relaxed and fun! As you can imagine, being able to have your dog come back under any circumstance (which we can teach you!) has many applications.

Start off in an enclosed space like a patio or garage, with your dog on leash. Also, make sure that there are few, if any, distractions. It’s hard to learn when there’s lot of other stuff going on. We want your dog focused on working together with you!

As you’ll see in our video “Coming When Called”, it is important to make being near you awesome. This means rewarding your pup every time she checks in, whether called or not. Use an upbeat, cheerful tone when you call your dog and run backward in an exciting way. Using a low-pitched voice or leaning towards your dog discourages her from coming to you.

Your “Coming When Called” sequence should look like this: call your dog’s name, wait for her to look up, say your recall word (“come”) and then run backwards away from your dog. As your dog catches up to you, click and deliver a tasty treat.

Like the old saying goes, practice makes perfect! So practice often, even on walks when your dog is just a step ahead of you, and you’ll have a great recall in no time!

Contributed by Wagfield Academy, the online dog training school. For more info on Wagfield Academy, please visit