How to Train Your Chow Chow Dog to Come

Medium
4-8 Weeks
General

Introduction

Chow Chow dogs have an independent nature. They want to be trusted and need to feel like they are their own decision makers. But if your Chow Chow can’t be trusted to come when you call him, he will not be able to have the independence he desires. You cannot be at the dog park or outside off-leash and not know if your Chow Chow will come to you when you ask him to. A dog who does not understand and follow this command can be at risk of injury or hurting another dog. 

Whether you are training him to come to you when called while outside to keep him safe or training him to come when you call him while around the house, training your dog to come when called helps to set expectations. Once he’s trained to come, your Chow Chow will know when he hears the command or his name it’s worth coming to you. 

Defining Tasks

Training your Chow Chow to come will require dedication and patience. Remember, this is a dog who is independent and will want to be making his own choices. You’ll need to give him a good reason to make the right choice--to come when called. A younger Chow Chow will require short training sessions with high rewards, and an older Chow Chow who already knows what independence looks like will need more time training, more patience from you, and rewards that will entice him to use his manners and listen and obey. This will be repetitive training and will require commitment from you. It might feel as if your Chow Chow gets this command and then reverts back to not listening to you. Do not give up at this point. Stay strong and keep training. Your Chow Chow will push his boundaries, so be prepared.

Getting Started

High-value treats will be important for getting your Chow Chow to come to you. You can work with toys as well training your Chow Chow to fetch and come back to you, bringing the toy along as well. Keep your training sessions no longer than fifteen minutes each, though you can do them several times a day. Make sure during training your Chow Chow is engaged. 

The Early Training Method

Most Recommended
6 Votes
Step
1
Puppy
When you are training your Chow Chow puppy, keep him close to you. This will teach your puppy you are his caregiver, building that bond and trust between the two of you.
Step
2
Playtime
During playtime with your pup, practice having him come to you by enticing him with a toy he loves to play with. Keep the distance between the two of you small so he is not distracted by something else, and during training times always train in a small, safe place such as your backyard or a quiet area of a park or even inside your home.
Step
3
Play with two toys
Toss one toy a few feet away from you while you and your Chow Chow are playing, expecting him to go get the toy.
Step
4
Call back
Call your pup by name and then use the word 'come' and show him the second toy you have in your hand. Because you are spending quality play time together and he's excited to play, he should want to come explore the toy you have. You can also do this with treats if he is not interested in a toy.
Step
5
Come
When your Chow Chow comes to you after you have called him back, give him a treat and lots of verbal praise to celebrate his return to you after you've asked him to come.
Step
6
Repeat and practice
Repeat these high energy moments with toys and treats, encouraging your Chow Chow puppy to come back to you every time you say his name and the command 'come' together. Practice increasing the distance between you and your Chow Chow and asking him to return to you using the command to come.
Step
7
Reward
Remember to always reward your Chow Chow when he returns to your side after giving the command to come.
Step
8
Command
Once he understands by repetition the command and your expectations, use the same command every time you expect him to come back to you, whether he is on a leash in your kitchen or out in your backyard.
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The Recall Method

Effective
3 Votes
Step
1
Choose a command
Choose a recall command you will use with your Chow Chow. This could be your dog's name or it could be the word 'come' or 'here.' Whichever command you choose to use to recall your Chow Chow, be sure you are consistent and use the same one on a regular basis.
Step
2
Schedule training
Set aside some time with your Chow Chow specifically to work on recalling him. This needs to be quiet distraction-free training time so your Chow Chow can focus on you and the mission of coming back to you when called.
Step
3
Recall
Begin playing with your Chow Chow. You can play tug-of-war with a rope or toss with a tennis ball. Practice calling him back to you using the command you chose.
Step
4
Entice
You want to give reason for your Chow Chow to return to you when you are using the recall command. You should only say the command word once, even if this is his name. Saying the recall command more than once will train your dog he has to hear it more than once before he bothers to come back to you. To get him to want to come, you need to entice him by showing him you have something special he wants to get.
Step
5
Ignore
If your Chow Chow decides to ignore you, take a break and a few deep breaths then go over to him for some more play time. Do not repeat the recall command if he does not give you his attention.
Step
6
Try again
During your play time together, let your Chow Chow see the treat you have but don't give it to him. Take a few steps away from him and try to recall him using your command again. This time, if he isn’t interested, let him see the treat you have and then drop it at your feet.
Step
7
Practice
Keep practicing recalling and rewarding your dog when he comes back to you. Remember to keep his reward high and do not go too far from him while training to recall. As he comes to you more and more, increase your distance from him.
Recommend training method?

The Hand Signal Method

Least Recommended
2 Votes
Step
1
Leash
Put your Chow Chow on a leash and stand close to him.
Step
2
Treat
Start your training off with a treat. As soon as you get him secured on a leash, give him a treat just for tolerating the leash without going for a walk.
Step
3
Step forward
Take a few steps away from your dog and then stop.
Step
4
Hand signal
Drop your hand to your side and hold it out palm flat, facing your dog. Use your dog's name and the command word "come". Because he's not very far from you, it should only be a few steps to get to you. If he does not move, have a treat ready in the hand that's holding the leash and show it to him.
Step
5
Come
When your Chow Chow takes a step towards you, give him the treat.
Step
6
Repeat
Practice this several times, taking several steps away from your dog and repeating the hand signal with your hand down, palm flat facing out toward him and using the word ‘come’ as a command.
Step
7
Increase distance
As your Chow Chow gets to know this hand signal and the command word 'come', as well as the reward when he comes back to you, increase the distance between you and your dog.
Step
8
Off-leash
Take your Chow Chow somewhere he can be off leash or in your backyard where he cannot run too far from you. Practice the steps above, using the command word and the hand signal, expecting your dog to drop what he's doing and come towards you. Remember to entice him and reward him with a treat.
Step
9
Keep it up
This connection your Chow Chow needs to make between the command word, the hand signal, the action, and the treat may take some time. Practice often but in short sessions, keeping your dog engaged and constantly rewarding him for doing a good job and giving you his attention.
Step
10
Add distractions
After a few weeks of consistent training, add some distractions. The command 'come' is really important when you are out and about with your dog, when his attention is on something else, or when your dog is off-leash and needs to obey you and be by your side. Offering distractions will remind him that his attention maybe grabbed elsewhere but he still needs to obey you when you call him.
Recommend training method?

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers and Success Stories

Question
remi
chow mountain cur m
6 Weeks
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Question
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remi
chow mountain cur m
6 Weeks

she is stubran and doesnt listen she nibbles alot and is very hard to potty train and it seems like she is trying to mark her teritory in the house and i dont know how to dicapline her cause im concerned she will turn on someone

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
134 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Here is information on potty training, as well as crate training just in case you decide to use a crate to help with potty training. Potty training: Know Your Pup. As you spend time with your puppy, learn your puppy’s love language. Just as some people prefer gifts, touch, or time spent together, puppies can be the same way. Some puppies love praise or pets, while others prefer treats. As you get to know your puppy, consider what reward your puppy loves the most. Create a Daily Schedule. It is best to have a routine for your puppy. A schedule helps them understand when to eat, play, and “go to the bathroom.” Your puppy should go out frequently and the routine should be the same every time. When? Start the day by taking your puppy outside, and repeating based on age and ability. They should also go out after napping, chewing, playing, and within 10 to 15 minutes of eating. Although some puppies can sleep for seven hours, it is important to set an alarm and take your pup out during the night. When you do, don’t make a fuss about it. Quietly take them outside with minimal stimulation and light. Praise them if they go to the bathroom and gently return them to their bed or crate. You don’t want them to get stimulated and ready to play in the middle of the night! As you get to know your puppy, you will become aware of their individual habits. Click here to learn more about house training schedules for puppies. Where? Take your puppy to a specific area to urinate or defecate. Be consistent. You can create an area by using urine-soaked paper or bowel movements to help create an aroma to stimulate your puppy. How? Take your puppy out on a leash so they can focus on the desired activity. This will help prevent them from wandering off to play. Once your puppy is in the selected area, use your verbal cue, such as “Hurry Up,” “Poopies,” “Go tinkle,” or any phrase your puppy responds to. What? Know the signs that your puppy has to go to the bathroom. Every animal may have a different “I gotta go” gesture, which often include restlessness, sniffing around, circling, scratching at the door, barking, and, eventually, squatting. At the first sign that your pup has to go, calmly and quickly take them outside to their bathroom spot. Deal with Accidents. Accidents are a normal part of house training a puppy. What to Do If you see your puppy in the process of urinating or defecating inappropriately, calmly and quickly interrupt them in the act. Tell them to stop (either by a jarring sound or command), and immediately take them to an appropriate location for elimination. After your puppy goes to the bathroom, lavishly praise them and offer a treat. Thoroughly clean up accidents, so your puppy is not attracted to this area again. Create a consistent feeding and watering schedule. Depending on the age of your puppy, they will eat three to four times a day. A consistent feeding routine can create a regular bathroom schedule. Take away water about 2 hours before bedtime. Learn more about ideal dog schedules here. What NOT to Do Don’t punish your puppy when they have an accident. At that point, it is too late. When a puppy has an accident in the house and they walk away, within seconds they have already forgotten about what they did. Taking them to the scene of the crime and yelling and/or rubbing their nose in it does not help and, in fact, can harm your puppy! Supervise. The best thing you can do is to prevent accidents and the best way to do this is to supervise your puppy at all times. You can tether your puppy to your waist with a five or six-foot leash and carefully observe them for signs that they need to go to the bathroom. If you can’t supervise, then crate or confine your puppy. The more accidents your puppy has in the house, the more confusing it will be for them and this can delay house training. Reward, Reward, Reward. It is important to give your puppy a reward for their good behavior. This can be for commands such as sitting and coming to you, or for appropriately eliminating outside. In a puppy, a reward can be a couple kibbles of puppy food or a treat, such as a small piece of meat. The treat should be exciting for them and only available as a result of good behavior. Crate training can take days or weeks, depending on your dog's age, temperament and past experiences. It's important to keep two things in mind while crate training: The crate should always be associated with something pleasant and training should take place in a series of small steps. Don't go too fast. Step 1: Introduce your dog to the crate Place the crate in an area of your house where the family spends a lot of time, such as the family room. Put a soft blanket or towel in the crate. Take the door off and let the dog explore the crate at their leisure. Some dogs will be naturally curious and start sleeping in the crate right away. If yours isn't one of them: Bring them over to the crate and talk to them in a happy tone of voice. Make sure the crate door is open and secured so that it won't hit your dog and frighten them. Encourage your dog to enter the crate by dropping some small food treats nearby, then just inside the door, and finally, all the way inside the crate. If they refuse to go all the way in at first, that's OK; don't force them to enter. Continue tossing treats into the crate until your dog will walk calmly all the way into the crate to get the food. If they aren’t interested in treats, try tossing a favorite toy in the crate. This step may take a few minutes or as long as several days. Step 2: Feed your dog meals in the crate After introducing your dog to the crate, begin feeding them their regular meals near the crate. This will create a pleasant association with the crate. If your dog is readily entering the crate when you begin Step 2, place the food dish all the way at the back of the crate. If they remain reluctant to enter, put the dish only as far inside as they will readily go without becoming fearful or anxious. Each time you feed them, place the dish a little further back in the crate. Once your dog is standing comfortably in the crate to eat their meal, you can close the door while they’re eating. The first time you do this, open the door as soon as they finish their meal. With each successive feeding, leave the door closed a few minutes longer, until they’re staying in the crate for 10 minutes or so after eating. If they begin to whine to be let out, you may have increased the length of time too quickly. Next time, try leaving them in the crate for a shorter time period. If they do whine or cry in the crate, don’t let them out until they stop. Otherwise, they'll learn that the way to get out of the crate is to whine, so they'll keep doing it. Step 3: Practice with longer crating periods After your dog is eating their regular meals in the crate with no sign of fear or anxiety, you can confine them there for short time periods while you're home. Call them over to the crate and give them a treat. Give them a command to enter, such as "crate." Encourage them by pointing to the inside of the crate with a treat in your hand. After your dog enters the crate, praise them, give them the treat and close the door. Sit quietly near the crate for five to 10 minutes and then go into another room for a few minutes. Return, sit quietly again for a short time and then let them out. Repeat this process several times a day, gradually increasing the length of time you leave them in the crate and the length of time you're out of sight. Once your dog will stay quietly in the crate for about 30 minutes with you mostly out of sight, you can begin leaving them crated when you're gone for short time periods and/or letting them sleep there at night. This may take several days or weeks. Step 4, Part A: Crate your dog when you leave After your dog can spend about 30 minutes in the crate without becoming anxious or afraid, you can begin leaving them crated for short periods when you leave the house. Put them in the crate using your regular command and a treat. You might also want to leave them with a few safe toys in the crate. Vary the moment during your "getting ready to leave" routine that you put your dog in the crate. Although they shouldn't be crated for a long time before you leave, you can crate them anywhere from five to 20 minutes prior to leaving. Don't make your departures emotional and prolonged—they should be matter-of-fact. Praise your dog briefly, give them a treat for entering the crate and then leave quietly. When you return home, don't reward your dog for excited behavior by responding to them in an enthusiastic way. Keep arrivals low-key to avoid increasing their anxiety over when you will return. Continue to crate your dog for short periods from time to time when you're home so they don't associate crating with being left alone. Step 4, Part B: Crate your dog at night Put your dog in the crate using your regular command and a treat. Initially, it may be a good idea to put the crate in your bedroom or nearby in a hallway, especially if you have a puppy. Puppies often need to go outside to eliminate during the night and you'll want to be able to hear your puppy when they whine to be let outside. Older dogs should also initially be kept nearby so they don't associate the crate with social isolation. Once your dog is sleeping comfortably through the night with the crate near you, you can begin to gradually move it to the location you prefer, although time spent with your dog—even sleep time—is a chance to strengthen the bond between you and your pet. Potential problems Whining: If your dog whines or cries while in the crate at night, it may be difficult to decide whether they’re whining to be let out of the crate, or whether they need to be let outside to eliminate. If you've followed the training procedures outlined above, then your dog hasn't been rewarded for whining in the past by being released from their crate. If that is the case, try to ignore the whining. If your dog is just testing you, they'll probably stop whining soon. Yelling at them or pounding on the crate will only make things worse. If the whining continues after you've ignored them for several minutes, use the phrase they associate with going outside to eliminate. If they respond and become excited, take them outside. This should be a trip with a purpose, not play time. If you're convinced that your dog doesn't need to eliminate, the best response is to ignore them until they stop whining. Don't give in; if you do, you'll teach your dog to whine loud and long to get what they want. If you've progressed gradually through the training steps and haven't done too much too fast, you'll be less likely to encounter this problem. If the problem becomes unmanageable, you may need to start the crate training process over again. Separation anxiety: Attempting to use the crate as a remedy for separation anxiety won't solve the problem. A crate may prevent your dog from being destructive, but they may get injured in an attempt to escape. Separation anxiety problems can only be resolved with counterconditioning and desensitization procedures.

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Sasha
Chow Chow
19 Months
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Sasha
Chow Chow
19 Months

I am currently training my dog through petco she is a chow chow/ Labrador mix. We just started last week I know it hasn’t been long but I fell like she will need additional training. My dog listens to me the most! And not my boyfriend at all. What is a way to get her to listen to him and should I put her in a better training class

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
707 Dog owners recommended

Hello Uchenna, I recommend having him practice the obedience commands she is learning, with you and also with him at home - he can either attend the class with you to learn how or you can show him what you are learning if he is willing. For basic obedience, the class you are in may be fine, since basic obedience is mostly about just teaching pup what a command means and how to do that command in less distracting places (it depends a lot on the individual trainer how good the class is), but it would be worth pursing private or an intermediate obedience class for reliability around distractions after the basic class. An intermediate class will work on things like obedience through crowds, around other dogs, ect...In that case, look for a trainer who also does off-leash, advanced obedience, even if you aren't going to pursue that (which is the level after intermediate), because they may have a better understanding of how to teach intermediate obedience with future off-leash work in mind, and it shows that they may have a bit more experience as a trainer in general. Always check into their previous client referrals also. I also recommend the article I have linked below for your boyfriend: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Chi and Kai
Chow Chow
1 Year
0 found helpful
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Chi and Kai
Chow Chow
1 Year

I don’t have question. Just a story. Get a treat when their young like 6 months or younger and put it near the top of their head. They should automatically go into a sit then say sit and give them the treat. I say good girl as well in a high pitch voice and rub them so they get that as a praise as well. Now at a year they both know sit and kind of lay down. You should do that so in case you need you put collar, harness or just check them out, you can.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
707 Dog owners recommended

Hello, What you are describing is also called lure-reward training, where you lure the dog into the position using a reward. That is wonderful that you have taught them that. You are right, they are very useful commands to teach and teaching them in those ways is one of the easiest and most fun ways to teach. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Snickers
Chow Chow
5 Months
2 found helpful
Question
2 found helpful
Snickers
Chow Chow
5 Months

Hi, I got my male chow about a week ago (he was almost 5 months). On walks he can be very stubborn and will only go where he wants or will just lay down somewhere. He doesn’t play with toys and rarely takes the treat that we give him. Almost all day he lays down in the same place and sleeps! We went to the vet and asked many people and they all say it’s stress. We got him from Europe and are taking him to the UK soon. All the traveling must be stressful but I think he should still be more enthusiastic and have more energy! I’ve seen YouTube videos and websites and they all say the same thing that doesn’t work! How do I get him to interact with me and my family? What should I do to get him to listen to me on walks? I really need a miracle training method! Please give me your advice.

Nikole

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
707 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jelena, First, pup probably needs time and patience. Right now, instead of focusing on trying to get him to be more energetic and learn lots of things keep, focus on keeping his atmosphere calm, patient, and pleasant. Its not unusual for it to take an older puppy a month to adapt. Also, be aware that part of it could be his personality too. He may not be a high energy dog since you have ruled out medical reasons. After a couple of weeks of being patient with him, keeping interactions calm, and your attitude confident and pleasant around him, then I suggest working on confidence building exercises like home-made agility obstacles. Chow Chows can be very independent by nature. For the walking, since he isn't motivated by food yet (that may chance once he relaxes more though), you can use what he wants as motivation (which is going back home). Pay attention to how far he will walk without resistance. Make a goal that is just a few feet past that. When he puts on the brakes, give short quick tugs on the leash (tugging and releasing tension, tugging and releasing, tugging and releasing) until he walks a couple of feet forward willingly. When he is moving again, praise him genuinely, then you be the one to turn home and end the walk. You want to teach him that the way to get back home is to cooperate with moving with you. When he will walk a bit further, then increase the distance a little more. At first the goal is simply to get him to go a few more feet than before willingly. Eventually by practicing this he should get used to following you in general and walk more normally. Also be aware though that this time of year, depending on where exactly you like, he may be hot and the pavement could be burning his paws - making him hate walking. Be sure to feel the pavement and pay attention to whether he is hot. If the heat is the issue, then getting him used to wearing dog hiking boots can help with the burning, and gently wetting him down before a walk, having him wear a cooling vest, or limiting the length of time outside during hot days can all help. Finally, if he continues to have issues and seems to feel bad, you may want to try gradually switching his food to something with different ingredients that is higher quality. Some dogs have food allergies or sensitive stomachs. Make the switch very gradually over a week or two to avoid stomach upset. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Chico
German shepherd chow mix
8 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Chico
German shepherd chow mix
8 Weeks

He has fleas and he acts very shy. My oldest Nubian got him yesterday and now I'm dog sitting. We also have a 1 1/2 pit bull that I want to learn how to care for properly too.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
92 Dog owners recommended

Hello, the first thing I would do is call the veterinarian for flea medicine. If the fleas get to your other dog, and in your house, you will need to eradicate the pests from the house or the flea problem will be perpetual. You cannot use any flea products on Chico without the vet's approval because he is so young. It could be dangerous. Take both dogs for a checkup to start off on the right foot. Then, they will be safe from parasites, worms, and fleas. The vet can explain how to clean the house as well, because flea eggs can get in cracks and hatch, and then start populating on the dog again. But don't worry it is solvable! The vet can also advise on vaccines, brands of food to buy, etc. To potty train Chico: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside. All of the methods are good. And to start obedience: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-sit-and-stay. Make sure that you take both dogs to obedience classes because this will help socialize them with other dogs and people, too. Good luck and happy training!

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