You get home after a long day at work, you’ve picked up the kids and you’ve just done the weekly shopping. You open your front door, bags in hand, and by the time you’ve dropped your bags down on the floor, your dog has leaped through the doorway and onto the street. Everyone is on their way back from work so the street is packed full of cars and the risk of an accident is high. You charge out onto the road and collect your mischievous dog, but this wasn’t the first time and you fear it won’t be the last.
Thousands of dogs every year are killed on the roads. Dogs have a natural ability for escaping their confines and charging into danger and while it may have been funny the first couple of times, now you seriously worry about your dog's safety.
The good news is, training your dog not to run out the door can be achieved in as little as a couple of weeks with receptive puppies and within a month or so if he’s older and stuck in his ways. You will need to use rigorous obedience commands, plus take a number of steps to limit his ability to charge out the door. Obedience commands will increase your level of control over your canine friend, also making other training easier.
It won’t be easy, but with patience and consistency, you can expect impressive results. Mastering this training is vital, it may save his life and also prevent a serious traffic accident that could injure somebody else. Successful training could also save you from hefty vet bills if he’s seriously injured during his unsanctioned exploits.
Before you open the door, you will need to get together a few things. Firstly, get yourself some doggie treats or break your dog's favorite food into small chunks. You will need these to hammer home the training and reward him for good behavior.
You will also need a doorway to practice in that doesn’t lead onto a busy street and is free from distractions. You will also need a long leash for one of the methods below.
The only other thing you need is patience and 15 minutes each day for the next few weeks and then you’re ready to commence training!
I red what your article says, but when I tried it for 5 weeks, and he still runs out the door, I dont want one day that my dog runs out and a car hits him, plz help. :c
Hello Coral, I suggest using the "Long Leash" method also found in that article but make the following changes to it. https://wagwalking.com/training/not-run-out-the-door 1. use a very light weight long leash, so that he will not feel it very much. You may have to make your own leash with something like braided paracord or climbing accessory rope. Look on the cord packaging and make sure that whatever you choose can hold at least five times his weight. Make sure his collar or harness is not too loose so that is won't slip off if he were to get out. 2. Attach the leash to something that gives him enough length that he 'could' get out the door, so that it is not the leash stopping him but your training - the leash is just for safety and to keep him from being rewarded with freedom outside if he were to get past you. Your presence needs to be what keeps him inside though since he won't always be wearing a leash. 3. When you first start the training on the leash, start in front of your door to go outside. Open the door a few inches and if he tries to move into the doorway, immediately close the door and get between him and the door and walk toward him until he has backed up several feet. Stand in front of him blocking his way until he stops trying to get past you and either walks away, looks at you for direction, lays down, or does something else indicating that he is ready to listen and stop trying to sneak out. If he won't give up, keep taking steps toward him until he indicates he is pay attention to you or will leave the door alone. Practice this routine at the door until he no longer rushes the door while you are standing there, even if the door is wide open. Increase how far you open the door as he improves, until you can leave it open while standing there. Your body language should be calm but very firm when you do this. You are walking into his space to communicate without giving any commands that you want him to respect that space (which you are claiming with your body language) by the door. 4. When he can handle not rushing out the door while you are standing there, then gradually back out of the door yourself - going outside or onto the porch steps, leaving it propped open while you do this (he should be able to handle it being propped open at this point - if not, work on the opening and closing and walking toward him for longer). Walk just far enough away that he is tempted to go out the door but doesn't try to every time. If he stays inside, then return to him and place a treat on the floor to reward him. If he tries to go out, put your hand out, with your palm facing him, like a stop sign and rush toward him to get him to back up into the house again, while saying "Ah Ah". Once he is back inside, practice walking away outside again, being ready to move toward him if he tries to follow you. Do all of this without giving any commands so that he will learn to do this at all times - not just when told to. 5. As he improves, gradually practice walking further and further away outside, even out of sight briefly (remember to use the long leash just in case he bolts and don't stay gone for long so that you can catch him trying to go out if he tries - which he will likely try when he cannot see you at first). Practice all of this until he can handle staying inside even while you are out of sight. 6. When he can handle you being out of sight, then recruit some friends with kids or dogs to walk down your sidewalk or play outside, while he watches from the door. Reward him when he stays inside, be ready to rush toward him if he tries to bolt (you may need to get a lot close to the door again when you first add distractions). Practice all of this until he can stay inside even if you are around the corner and there are distractions present. 7. Once he is trained, always be careful still. Any dog can slip up if something unexpected, they were not prepared for happens, and it is always good to be careful around cars. 8. Whenever you take him outside through that door, give him a command such as "Okay", "Let's Go" or "Free" that means it is okay to go through the door with you. You are teaching him to automatically NOT go through the door in general so he needs to be taught a command that lets him know that it is okay to go through when told to, so that you do not undo his training by letting him through the door without a release command. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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Won’t sit very stubborn and now started running out front door
Hello! So I am going to give you some tips on teaching recall. Recall: STAGE ONE – 'Catching' or Charging Up the 'Come' Cue Start in a distraction free environment so that your dog can focus only on you. Whenever your puppy or dog is coming to you on his own, wait until he is a couple of feet from you and then say his name and the word 'come.' When he gets to you, make a big fuss. With this exercise, your dog will learn that coming to you is a really good thing. After a while, you can lengthen the distance between you and start using the word when he is coming to you from a greater distance. Coming to you should always be rewarded, whatever the circumstance and no matter how long it took your dog to respond. Motivate your dog to come by being exciting, running away from him, waving a toy, or having delicious food for him when he gets to you. This will show him that coming back to you the best thing he can do. STAGE TWO – Solidifying the Cue Through Play Make sure you play the Back and Forth game with another person that your dog is comfortable with. Start the game in a quiet environment so it is easy for your dog to focus on you. Hold your dog back while the other person calls him excitedly. Try not to use his name or the cue word but talk excitedly to ‘gee’ him up. Do not release him until the person calls his name followed by the cue word “come.” When the cue word is given, release your dog and let him go running to the person calling. As soon as he reaches them they should praise and reward him with a game of tug or a food reward. When your dog has had his reward, have the other person hold him back as you call him and release as you say his name followed by the cue word. When he comes to you reward him with another game of tug or food reward. Repeat this game back and forth but only do a few repetitions so your dog does not get bored or too tired. Keeping it fresh means the game is always fun to play. STAGE THREE – Adding Vocal Cue With Hand Signal Inside Now your dog knows what the word “come” means you can use the cue word to call him to you while adding a hand signal to the word. Hand signals are always good to build with vocal cues so that even if your dog cannot hear you he will understand what the hand signal means. This is good if your dog is a distance away from you. Start in a quiet environment. Walk away from your dog and call his name followed by the cue word and a hand signal. Praise and reward him when he comes to you. Start increasing the distance you call him from and praise for his compliance. If he does not respond, go back to the previous distance and repeat. Only practice this cue for a few minutes so your dog does not get bored. The secret to success is to always keep it fun, exciting and fresh. When your dog recognizes the hand signal, try calling his name and using the hand signal by itself without the vocal cue. You will then be able to use a combination of vocal cue only, hand signal only and the two together. Now your dog knows what the cue word means you can start to call him from different rooms or from areas where he cannot see you. This will encourage him to respond even when you are out of sight. STAGE FOUR – Adding Vocal Cue With Hand Signal Outside Now your dog is consistently coming to you in a distraction free environment you can proof your recall cue by taking it outside. Practice the recall in your yard and then gradually build up to the point where you can use it in the park or similar environment. The ultimate test is to use the recall when your dog is engaged in a different activity. Wait for a lull in that activity and then call your dog to you. Praise his decision to comply.
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How do I train my dog not to run out the front door when the door opens?
How do I train my dog not to bark when someone passes by our house, and only bark when someone rings the bell?
Hello Saloni, For the door, attach a thirty or fifty foot leash to a padded back clip harness that he can't slip out of. Attach the other end of the leash to something sturdy like a stairway banister (the leash is a safety measure). With the leash slack and only there "just in case", act like you are going out the door. Start to open the door and whenever pup tries to go toward it, quickly close it. Your goal isn't to hit him but he may get a slight bump if he is especially pushy. Practice opening and closing the door until you can open it and he will wait until it is open further. When he is waiting a bit, then get between him and the door and play goalie with the opening. Opening the door wide enough for you to get through, then whenever pup tries to get through, firmly but calmly take several steps toward him to make him back up. By doing this you are communicating that you own that space and asking for his respect. Once you can open the door and he will stay back and not try to rush through, then you can praise and toss a treat. You will gradually practice opening the door more and more and blocking him from getting through and walking toward him to make him back up and wait. Take steps toward him until he is at least two feet from the door AND two feet away from you - those two distances often equal him giving you respect (and not simply waiting to get past you when you move), and waiting at the door (instead of trying to bolt). It will feel a lot like you are a soccer goalie, having to be quick and focused. When you can open the door completely and he will wait, take a step outside through the doorway. If he tries to follow, rush toward him a couple steps, making him backup again quickly. If he waits patiently, then praise and toss a treat at his paws. Practice at that distance until he will stay back. As he improves, take more and more steps, moving outside, onto your porch and into your yard eventually. Be ready to quickly rush toward him as soon as you see him start to move, to keep him from getting outside (this is why you back tied the long leash on him, just in case he gets past you, but for training purposes the goal is to keep him from getting out so he isn't rewarded for bolting). When he will stay inside while you stand in the yard, then recruit others to be distractions outside. Expect to stay a bit closer to him when you first add a hard distraction - like another dog walking past, a walker, kids playing in the yard, balls being tossed. Imagine what types of things he may one day see outside and choose distractions that are at least that difficult to practice this around. If pup has ever shown any form of aggression, that will need to be addressed first before you address the door bolting, or pup may protest new boundaries instead of respecting them. For the barking, I recommend teaching pup the Quiet command, and practicing Quiet at the window - At first rewarding pup when they get quiet after being told, then preempting the barking and telling pup Quiet before they bark and rewarding if they do so, then rewarding pup for simply being quiet without having to be told whenever there is a person outside and they don't bark. This will take a lot of repetition and intentional practice before you should expect it to be an automatic. I would block pup's view through the window off when you aren't there to practice the training or have pup stay in another room if it can't be blocked off, so that pup isn't practicing barking at people without being interrupted, until pup is trained well enough to be quiet at the window even when you aren't there to tell them to. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark I suspect you won't have to encourage door barking, if you transition away from the door to practicing at the window once pup understands what Quiet means, they will likely continue to bark at the door even if they become quiet at the window, since someone at the door is more exciting for them. If they do become quiet at the door also, simply practice the Speak command when someone knocks at the door - rewarding Speak at the door, and rewarding Quiet at the window. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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