So does anyone have any advice on how to get your dog to listen to you when outside? scout pretty much ignores me when he is off leash unless we are in our home so i never take him off leash which makes me sad because i want to give him freedom but may be too much. Training has helped enormously but i cant get him to stop eating stuff off the ground. Also, he is hitting his "teenage stage" because he is almost 6months now. is there any way to ride that out smoothly? any tips or tricks?

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As a long time corgi owner, instructor and rescuer I can tell you that six months is nearly always way to young to expect a solid recall from any dog. They are young, curious and have a not so solid attention span. Lots of practice is needed to guarantee consistant recalls. A few things that may be of help. Inside play hide and seek and use the command "come" find me. Often times this is most helpful in a dog seeking you out. Never use this command if you are going to do something he is not crazy about. Never use the command unless it can be reinforced. When doing outside activities tie his lead to you so he has to stay nearby. You may use the "come" command then as you can easily reinforce it. As for eating things off the ground "leave it" is a must train command for all dogs. Start by finding a not so prized object to walk by while on lead. As he goes to sniff use the command "leave it" and quickly refocus his attentions to you. As soon as he looks at you treat and praise. Practice this frequently upping the interest in the object. If you are consistent you will find this works like a charm.
wow i didnt know you trained them too! we do come inside. and he is pretty good at it. i will try the gradual leave it with items he isnt into to the highly interesting ones. Thanks!
In terms of the "teenage stage", I guess just make sure you're continually re-enforcing his training. Never settle for "good enough" training.

Does Scout ignore you only when he's off leash? How about on leash? Have you taught him "look" or "watch me"? Those are really helpful when I'm walking Theo. I hold out a treat, put it to my eye-level and say "look", then Theo looks up at the treat/at my eyes. He can't walk ahead of me or away from me and still look at me, so he stays by my side in a nice heel. Then I give him the treat. It's a slow process, but it teaches him that walking=treats=from me.
well when he is on leash he pretty much knows that he has to listen so he does. He is a good pup but just overly curious about everything. we do the "look at me" which is the same principle. he is actually gotten loads better on the leash. he used to tug like crazy. we are currently trying to teach him the "automatic sit" where they sit when you stop which is really helpful especially in the city when you cross streets and "wait." i think he just gets too excited and distracted because he wants to play with everything.

Thanks for all the tips though! i really appreciate this forum and all the information it has provided me!
winnie has the same problems. she will listen outside, if there is nothing better to do. but lets say there is a bird in a tree, stick on the ground, worm in the grass, leaves blowing etc she acts like you aren't there. her in house skills are pretty good but i guess we need to work on traing outside. we're working extremely hard on the drop it /leave it commands... and that is one thing she is better with outside than in (our biggest problems are socks slippers and underclothing.)

good luck, I'll be interested in hearing if this is age related or trainer related.
oh! have had really good success with drop it. i ended up always having a few treats on my table or in my pocket and i did it for like 10 times in a row and he has got that one down. when your dog chews on something, anything, even stuff it likes, say drop it, and show it a treat. usually, if the treat is appetizing enough, the dog will drop whatever it is doign to get it. now even at the dog park, if he is chewing on wood or anything i dont want him to chew on, he will even spit whatever is in his mouth out and run over to me to get a treat. this usually is enough time for me to pick up whatever i didnt want him to chew on. still working on leave it and come. but its progress!!
My Frodo is also curious about everything and that makes him easily distracted. So hide-and-seek is a good game to train him to focus? Anything else?
I don't think there is a way to make a puppy or young dog pay attention when they are outside off-leash. When Charlie is off-leash in the backyard I still only say, "Come!" when he already running to me. I never say "Come!" if he is off-leash enjoying himself (not paying attention). About the most I do when he is off leash is say his name "Charlie!" He always looks at me to see what I want, but I don't usually press my luck with other commands at that point. Just, "Good dog!" We are working on his "Come!" with an 18 foot training lead. On a long lead I can give him a quick tug in my direction, and essentially make sure that he comes to me when I give the command.

As far as the teenage stage, the two most important survival tools are 1) patience and 2) a good sense of humor. LOL Other than that, increase the exercise level, and make training sessions shorter, but do more sessions per day. If he's being a totally distracted teenage brat, quit and try again later.
haha thanks. he is totally being a teenage brat, but only on occasion and mostly when off leash. I guess that at the least, he comes to me when a bigger dog is picking on him at the dog park.


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