Training a dog to come back to you from a distance is considered to be one of the more challenging tasks, as you are asking your dog to return to you when he is interested in doing something else or being elsewhere. But, if you don't train him to come back on your command, he could simply run off and get lost or be injured, or worse. It is only natural for a dog to want to roam and explore his world, it is your job to teach him to come back to you when you call him.
There is nothing worse than having to worry about your dog running loose just because the front door is open, or the gate didn't get closed properly. At the same time, you don't want to treat your dog like he is a prisoner in his own home or yard. Long lead or as it is also known, long leash, long line, or check cord training is one of the fastest and best ways to train your furry friend to come each time you call him.
The basic command is "Come!", meaning that no matter what your dog happens to be doing when you call his name and use the command, you want him to immediately stop what he is doing and return to you. This is one of the most important things you can teach your pup to do, as it could easily save his life at some point. Imagine if your dog was just about to step out onto a busy street and he ignored your command to 'come'.
While the command and the anticipated response are relatively simple, it can take a while for the concept to set in and for your dog to learn to come to your command whether or not he is on a long lead. You can use this method of training on both puppies and adults. In fact, the earlier you start this type of training, the faster your pup is likely to learn what is expected of him.
When it comes to getting started, you don't need much in the way of equipment. You need a long leash, most trainers recommend one between 30 and 50 feet long. Never use one of those retractable leashes as this is not what they are designed to be used for. The ultimate goal is for your dog to come anytime you call without the need for any kind of leash. Supplies needed include:
Keep in mind that the idea of a long lead is to allow it to trail out behind your dog without your interference. He needs to feel as though he is free to wander until he gets to the end of the line, at which point you should be commanding him to come. Remember to use a firm commanding voice that lets your dog know you mean business while at the same time make sure you have a treat for him when he does what he is being asked to do.