- Pet forum for dogs cats and humans 


Nova won't come when called, what to do?

January 13th, 2009, 07:36 PM
I thought I'd give it a post in the section for a bit of advice. I'm sure others have gone through a 'rebellious' phase with their puppies at some point.

Nova has decided that she will not come when called . If I call her, she purposely turns the other direction and runs away from me. If I try to get her to come in from outside, she won't listen. She won't come when called at the park now either. So I've stripped away her off-leash rights. If I try to get her to come to me, she makes it into a chase game. Last night she wouldn't come in from outside so I went to go get her. I basically stood in one spot for 10 minutes with her having the 'you can't catch me!' zoomies. :rolleyes: I only got her inside when my sister let my other dog outside and he pinned her down.

I've started tying her to me with a leash when in the house, re-doing the umbilical cord thing. Is there anything else I can do to get her to listen? She -knows- what I want, and has an excellent recall at flyball and obedience classes. But around home and the park... she is out-right deciding she doesn't want to do it.

9 month old border collie puppies... :rolleyes:

January 13th, 2009, 07:42 PM
Keely is also going through this. And an 8 month old terrier is soooo stubborn!.. When she turns the come command into a game of chase I walk away. And she panicks and will follow me as soon as I step away, She does not want to be left by her momma. YOu think Nova would fall for it? Sometimes it doesnt work, so I accually have to raise my voice to get her to listen.Some thing I hate doing but sometiems it seems that I have no other choice. Anyway, when I do that she will slowly come towards me and looks at me as if to say "Mommy, Dont yell at me, I iz just a baby" (Which i sometimes forget because she is soo smart and pretty well trained for her age). She will stay everytime I tell her, But getting her to "Come" Is a whole other story! She listens inside, But in ther yard! NO WAY will she listen! I hope somebody gives you really good advice because I need the help as well.

the gang
January 13th, 2009, 07:45 PM
i know how you feel!!!! i have min pins :evil: they do not listen, brenda and the pins

January 13th, 2009, 07:48 PM
Nova actually thinks the game is even more fun when mommy gets mad. When I yelled last night she just ran faster :o I knew I couldn't be the only one going through this, we can give each other hugs as our crazy puppies run rampant :laughing:

January 13th, 2009, 08:02 PM
I have nothing to add in the way of advice but hearing this makes me soooo glad Dracko is not a puppy! That puppy stage is so challenging. :wall:

I love it now that Dracko, when I say his name and call him whips his head around and listens so well. All I can say is wait a few years and the "puppy stage" will be gone. :laughing::o

January 13th, 2009, 08:05 PM
Well, since you know that she is not going to come when called - take away her option.

Sorry - but she goes back on a leash until she learns that come means come NOW. This is one of those commands that could mean the difference between life and death should a dog ever get loose. It should NEVER, EVER be allowed to become a game.

January 13th, 2009, 08:10 PM
Well, since you know that she is not going to come when called - take away her option.

Sorry - but she goes back on a leash until she learns that come means come NOW. This is one of those commands that could mean the difference between life and death should a dog ever get loose. It should NEVER, EVER be allowed to become a game.

Thanks, that what I thought as well - which is why she is being kept on a leash and has lost her off-leash rights. I need my family to understand this as well - I put a long leash by the door so that when she goes outside we can leash her on something longer, but they aren't doing it! She is really good when tied to me at least, although will lie on the ground crying and moaning about it (which she is doing as I type!)

January 13th, 2009, 08:20 PM
I had to do the same with Matt. He used to think it was a big game but no way. He got to watch Murphy play off leash with out him and he learned Come pretty quick. So far Murphy hasn't tried not comming yet. Good luck

January 13th, 2009, 08:20 PM
Explain to your family that her blowing off this particular command could result in her immediate death by a passing car. If they really need a jolt - offer to drive them up to the local vet's to see what kind of injuries occur when a dog is hit by a car.

January 13th, 2009, 09:25 PM
I'm not sure I won't live to regret this but I ALWAYS give Max a treat (a piece of kibble) when I call him. It's one command I always want him to obey. Of course at only four months old I am the hunter gatherer/provider of all food/center of his universe. He hasn't hit the rebellious stage yet.

January 13th, 2009, 10:52 PM
Is your yard fenced, Spatx? If it is and you have some time, there are a couple of exercises you can do to help with recall.

One is to just walk with Nova unleashed in the yard. When you get close to her touch her and say good girl. Then pat her and release her to run from you. That gets her used to being praised when you touch her. It also shows her that when she comes close to you, it doesn't automatically mean that the fun is over.

The other exercise is to let her off leash in the yard and give her the command to come. (Everyone in the family has to be onboard with this one--everyone needs to do it.) If she does come, of course, you praise her. If you have more time, release her to wander again. (As with the first exercise, this teaches her that coming to you does not necessarily mean the end of her fun.)

If she does not come when called the first time, don't get angry, and don't repeat the command. Just start walking to her deliberately. If she moves away, grab your patience firmly with both hands (:D that can be the hardest part) and follow deliberately. Eventually, you will catch up to her in a fenced area. When you do, no scolding, no praise, no reaction from you except to take her by the collar or snap on a leash and bring her inside. This teaches her that if she ignores you, then her playtime is over.

These were the things we did with Macie, our rescue from a kennel. She was neglected for 18 months and really has a mind of her own. She was self-entertained in her kennel for all those months, not having to answer to anyone. When her attention was caught by something that interested her, she was notorious about turning off her ears to outside distractions, like Mom and Dad. :rolleyes: This, of course, made our ability to recall her pretty laughable.

But the exercises helped. She's much better in the yard now. I still practice with her--even if I'm intending to let her stay out and watch her squirrels or point her birds, I'll call her to me just to say 'hi', pat her, then release her back to the yard. Although she's not 100%, she's now reliable enough to take on outings in the woods :thumbs up

January 14th, 2009, 12:10 AM
Is Nova curious at all? Or just wants to play hard to get?

I discovered a great technique for fooling a pup. Well, at least it worked for me. Instead of yelling/chasing, pretend to walk towards something and bend down and act real curious about it. If Nova is inquisitive, she won't be able to stand not knowing what it is you're studying and should investigate. Then you can take her into the house.

Then in the mean time, say come for all sorts of stuff. Spur of the moment, call out for a treat, like during almost nap time when she's drowsy. Maybe a cut end of a carrot while you're making supper, that sort of thing. Then "come" gets to mean something good or fun is in store and Nova will make sure to get there first so as not to miss anything important.

Now for outdoors, I played on Sheeba's normal behavior of not wanting to be alone. If she was to start acting up and not follow directions, I would simply disappear around a corner or behind trees (in the woods). Then she had to come look for me. She learned real quick that fun ended when she got rebellious. (This method may not work for all dogs. Some dogs might not mind being alone and may run off. Really observe your dog's natural tendencies, whether food/scent driven, prey driven, etc. and customize training accordingly.)

January 14th, 2009, 05:44 AM
Thanks for the tips, I'll have to try some of those exercises :) I think right now Nova thinks that 'come' means the fun ends.. like coming to put a leash back on when at the park, coming inside, coming over to go to her crate... I'll definitely have to see what I can do to change her attitude towards the command. I call her for lots of fun stuff, but the negative things always seem to leave the greatest impression. Anyway, off to work! I'll have to try things when I get home later.

January 14th, 2009, 12:54 PM
you have made a really great start with working on the recall. not letting her offleash is the biggest thing right now , along with getting your whole family on board. also the recall games that have been suggested are all really good for working on the recall. Also if you are at the field or park, or even in your backyard with her, hold on to your end of the long leash and just keep walking around. after a while stop and stand in one place, dont say anything, if she comes to you ( on her own choice ) give her lots of praise and pats, if she doesnt, just give her a gentle tug on the leash, you dont even need to give a command right now, this will just help to establish that coming to you is good and always results in something positive.

you dont want to call Nova ( i love her name by the way :) ) to you if you are going to do anything that she finds even the least bit unpleasent, because then you are getting her to come to you and something bad happens, which is breaking her trust with you. If you need to do something she wont like ( eg. nail clipping ) walk up to her, not cooing her or anything, give her a treat for not going when she sees you coming ( that way she wont learn, ' oh she is coming to me, something bad is going to happen) and do what needs to be done, making it positive. As you said, the negative things always seem to leave the greatest impression.

Here is a link that i have bookmarked for recall, its for clicker training ( thats what i use, i found it helpful for the recall, im not sure if you use it or not though? )

Karen Pryor wrote it, i personally really like her writing and training.

January 14th, 2009, 04:59 PM
Thankyou very much Allymack, those are some excellent training tips as well. I use a clicker for most of my training :D I have a feeling she'll figure it out really quickly. I just spent 30 minutes when I got home from work practicing her tricks and obedience. She knows exactly what I want from her, but I think spending the time going over it with lots of praise and treats will help, along with other exercises mentioned.

I'll definitely have to start doing what you said with not calling her for 'negative' experiences, since this is the base of the rebelling behaviour. Nova needs a nail trim sometime this week, so I'll try what you said. I definitely need to be able to walk towards her without her running away. She's a very sensitive, and intelligent dog, which just has me learning new ways to work with her. She needs a little bit of a different approach, since I've learned that when she does something wrong she can take it very hard. With her, it's all about setting her up for success, which is what I'm trying very hard to do with her recall. :)

I'll let everyone know how it goes with her :goodvibes: