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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

Bellas been a right pain I'm the :mad:.

Last few mornings now it's lighter and warmer the field we walk in suddenly has rabbits everywhere! Once bella goes looking in the bushes and brambles she flat out ignores everything we do and runs around sniffing and yapping over where the rabbit burrows are.
If we approach her she just goes further away,we can call her shake treats etc nothing.

Is it a case of putting the longline back on? And keeping her away from the bushes or is it something she'll get used to?

It's getting out of hand now the past 2 mornings she's wondered off for 20 mins at a time if we go to catch her she just goes further away
 

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Definitely go back to the long line and do not let her do this or she will get more and more used to having her fun without you. Keep away from the bushes for now, but take high value treats and reward her lots for all of her interactions with you instead of bunny obsession. You can gradually get closer to the bushes and temptation as she gets better at focusing on you instead of them and be prepared to give her a real jackpot of treats if she starts to notice the bunnies but then pays attention to you instead :D
 

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I love the term jackpot for this huge payoff. It should come any time a pup looks to you to see what you expect from them in a situation before they react. Best is when they get the jackpot and what they were attracted to in the first place. "Of course you can go and greet that other dog, thank you for asking" as you unclip their lead when they've sat and looked to you hopefully.

With the rabbits I would keep her on a short lead and give a guttural growl of disapproval if she took a step towards them. Mark and treat as you walk past with no pulling, then when you are in a safe zone reward her with a really good game with a ball. A good bond with special ball is a godsend with a high prey drive dog.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the replies trouble is she's already used to going off.She will sit and wait until you give her the command to go off lead then she's off halfway over the field,she does come back but most of the time it's when she's ready. We've tried taking treats or just using ham etc for recall but it's hit and miss and i think we've given up trying to change it.

I don't really want to constantly lead walk her and would love for her to be off lead
 

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Your choice, you either go back to the long line and work on retraining her or you accept you have a dog with poor recall, but the more you allow her to do as she pleases the more likely she is to only recall when SHE wants which ultimately may place her in danger - and no point you getting annoyed with her as it is your choice to not put some work into her recall now.

How old is she?
 

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Take heart, even very highly trained police dogs and show dogs work on lead in distracting environments.

Some thoughts on off lead walking.

With time you'll develop a radar where you spot trouble before they do and change direction or clip them back on lead rather than risking them not listening.

Try Marzi's trick of laying down on the ground in an emergency to make them come back to check on you.

To test their obedience you can use two leads, one long one short. Make a big thing of releasing them from the short lead then call them back at about ten feet. If they listen then jackpot and release them, if not reel them in with the long line and try again another day.

I've had Rufus refuse to listen on a couple of occasions. One was a porcupine:eek: and the other a very attractive dog after multiple long days on a car trip. The common denominator was that both times I didn't have his ball, that is my secret weapon!:D
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Your choice, you either go back to the long line and work on retraining her or you accept you have a dog with poor recall, but the more you allow her to do as she pleases the more likely she is to only recall when SHE wants which ultimately may place her in danger - and no point you getting annoyed with her as it is your choice to not put some work into her recall now.

How old is she?
Bella's 11 months almost 1.

I gave it another go this morning offlead and straight away she's off halfway over the field.She did come back a few times where i then make her sit and reward her,but then we approached another field where she made a strange bark then was off again :mad:.She's going back on her long line from tomorrow.

Thing is when she's on her long line she comes back 90% of the time as she knows she can't go anywhere
 

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I thought she was probably that sort of age :D - don't despair she is right in her teenage period of being most testing.

I would go back to the long line, but also change what you do, so calling and asking for a sit before giving a treat is not such a huge incentive to come as it ends the flow of fun rather than making you at the centre of the fun. Call her and as she gets to you, throw a piece of food a short way and ask her to find it, as soon as she has it, call again and repeat a couple of times, then send her off to play again. Also take whatever she likes to play with and have some fun while you are out and about
 
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