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Dog won't come to me

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I have a 5 month old toy poodle who is always near me but whenever I try to pick her up or go near her, she runs away. At first it was cute, but now it's a nuisance. She loves going for walks, but when I try to get her to put on her leash, she runs away. Then she comes right back to me. At first I thought she was playing, but now it's 24/7. Anyone have this same problem? Solutions?
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This should be in the training section. You might want to have Todd move it.

Your dog is dictating when and where you handle her. This is not OK and it is a safety issue. I would recommend tethering. You can read about this on the Internet.

Also, it seems to me that you have no recall. When you call your dog, it needs to come. However, it does no good to give a command you can not enforce and that you can not treat. To start this training she needs to be on a leash anytime she is out of her crate, even in the house (she can drag her leash around if she is supervised).

Numerous times a day you need to practice the recall. Make sure you have the end of the leash/line. Say your dog's name, followed by the come command. Just a note about this.... some people choose to use a word other than "Come" because they want a distinct word that can not be confused with anything else. Some people use "Front" or "Aqui". The idea is that when you say this word, your dog drops whatever it is that it is doing, and high-tails it back to you, ultimately coming and sitting nicely in front of you close enough that you can bend down and touch/handle it.

So anyway.... Say, "Fluffy Come!" in a happy up-beat voice. If she starts to come, reel her in and PARTY PARTY PRAISE! With small dogs it is a good idea to give the treat around the back and in between your calves. This gets the dog used to coming in close and between your feet.

If your dog ignores you, give it a collar pop and reel it in again PARTY PARTy PRAISE and a treat between the legs.

Your Poodle will learn quickly that if she comes, she will get a reward and if she does not come, she will get a correction.
 

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As I read the posting on this tread I'm wondering if I need to do the command with him on a leach/tethering? And gently pull him towards me on the 'come' command so he'll understand what it is I am wanting him to do? - - - Or when he's outside in the fenced yard, and I call him to come in and he does 'come' I need to praise him a lot and give him a treat?
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He should NEVER be off leash either in the house or in the yard. He needs to drag a long line around. This way, you can pick up the end, call him and if he does not respond immediately, you can give him a collar pop. As he starts to come in PRAISE PRAISE PRAISE for being so smart and good. Give him a treat when he comes in close and is right in front of you (don't move into him, let him come to you.... back up if anything to keep him coming in).

If there is no consequence for non-compliance, then he will just blow you off.
 

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Sometimes he gets fixated on a bird or something and I have to pull so hard to reel him in that I feel like I'm abusing him.
Instead of pulling, try short, hard, staccato pops. I find the more I pull, the more the dog leans pulls against me. I used to ride horses and the same thing is true there which is why in dressage you use a series of half halts to shift a horse's center of balance and to adjust speed. If you keep a steady pull, the horse just gets heavier and heavier.
 

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Thanks, I'll try that. When he leans like that, it feels like he weighs about 50 pounds instead of 12. It's actually kind of amazing that he can do that, no matter how frustrating it is for me. :)
Ah yes... in our house we call that Zen dog. Rudi our Poodle mix was only 7 lbs but if he was on the bed and in a spot he wanted, he could make himself weigh 50lbs at least! :)
 
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