If you’re an Australian Shepherd owner, then you know how important it is to have a reliable recall. A dog that doesn’t come when called can be a real danger, both to himself and to other people and animals.
In this article, we will discuss some tips for training your Australian Shepherd to come when called. We’ll also talk about how to safely let your dog off-leash in open areas.
Are Australian Shepherds Good Off-Leash?
Your Australian Shepherd cannot be expected to be 100% reliable off-leash, no matter how well he is trained. This is because there are so many distractions in the world that your dog may find more interesting than you.
However, with proper training and socialization, your Australian Shepherd can be reasonably trustworthy off-leash. This means that he will come when called most of the time, even if there are other dogs or people around.
Why Is Off Lead Walking Good For Your Australian Shepherd?
Off-lead walking is great for your Australian Shepherd’s physical and mental health. It gives him the opportunity to run and play, which is essential for a high-energy breed like the Aussie. It also allows him to explore his surroundings and use his nose, which is something that all dogs love to do. Other benefits of off-lead walking include:
Improves Their Attention Span
When your Australian Shepherd is off lead, he will be more attentive to you as he will want to stay close by in case you call him back. This improved attention span can also be beneficial when you are training your dog on other commands.
They Can Obey Your Commands Better
When your Australian Shepherd is off leach, he has more freedom to move around, which means he can better obey your commands. For example, if you tell him to sit, he can move away from you and sit down. This is much harder to do when he is on a lead as he may feel restricted.
They Can Be More Physical And Mentally Secure
When your Australian Shepherd is off lead, he can run and play more freely. This can help to tire him out both physically and mentally, which can make him a more obedient dog when he is on a lead.
They Will Establish Good Habits
If you only ever let your Australian Shepherd off the lead in safe areas, such as your garden or the local park, he will start to associate being off the lead with good habits. However, if you let him off the lead in places where he is likely to get into trouble, such as the street or near a busy road, he will start to associate being off the lead with bad habits.
Your Dog Will Be More Relaxed If Off Lead
If you have an anxious or stressed Australian Shepherd, letting him off the lead can help to relax him. This is because he will no longer feel restrained by the lead and will be able to move around more freely. This can also help to build his confidence if he is shy or scared of other dogs.
Reasons Why You Should Not Let Your Australian Shepherd Off-Leash
There are several reasons why you might not want to let your Australian Shepherd off-leash some of them are:
Higher Risk Of An Accident
Your Aussie could get hit by a car, run into traffic, or chase after an animal and get lost.
Threats They Might Eat Something Toxic
If your Aussie eats something toxic while off the lead, it will be very difficult for you to catch them and get them to vomit it back up.
They May Come Across A Dog They Don’t Want To Interact With
If your Aussie comes across a dog that they don’t want to interact with, it could lead to a fight. So, it’s important to make sure that your Aussie is Recall trained before you let them off the lead.
They May Learn Unnecessary Habits
If you allow your Aussie to run off the lead all the time, they may learn unnecessary habits such as chasing after cars or animals.
How To Train Your Aussie To Be Off-Leash?
You can train your Aussie to be off-leash by teaching them the recall command. To do so you can try:
Train Them To Recall And Despond To Their Name
The first step is to train your Aussie to come when they are called by their name. You can do this by calling their name and then rewarding them with a treat when they come to you.
They Need To Learn Certain Commands
Your Aussie also needs to learn certain commands such as sit, stay, come, and down before you let them off the lead.
Initially Train Them Somewhere Safe And Quite
When you first start training your Aussie to be off the lead, it is important to do so in a safe and quiet place. This will help them to concentrate and not get distracted by anything else.
Start With A Longer Leash
When you first start training your Aussie to be off the lead, you should start with a longer leash. This will give them some freedom to move around, but will still allow you to keep control of them.
Start At Home Method
The best way to train your Aussie to be off the lead is to start at home. This will allow you to have complete control over the environment and distractions.
Use The 180 Method
If your Aussie does start to run off, the best way to stop them is to use the 180 methods. This involves turning around and walking in the opposite direction. This will usually confuse them enough to make them stop and come back to you.
Training your Aussie to be off the lead can be a challenge, but it is definitely possible. By using the methods above, you should be able to get them to listen to you and stay by your side. Australian Shepherds are intelligent dogs and with some patience, you will be able to train them to do anything you want.