The Recall Training Present


As soon as Prince was done with his immunization schedule i began training him in all earnest, In India back then there were no Canine Behaviorists just the regular run of the mill trainers who used physical force to train. So having gathered whatever tips possible from good training books and a seasoned dog show owner i decided to train Prince myself minus the run of the mill trainer. One of the commands i wanted to teach him was “Recall” that is come while being called. The only safe enough place that i could find close to home was a park space filled with weeds and grass tall enough up to your knees. As i let Prince off leash for the first time my heart skipped a beat as i saw him disappear in the grass. It was his first time off leash so nose close to the ground he moved quite far away from me. I began to call out to him and came back instantly, he was rewarded with praise from me -“good boy” i said and let him loose again.

To not roll in poo
Things A Dog Must Remember

I did this repeatedly a couple of times and he came back always for praise and treats. As it was getting late i called out to Prince as he was out of sight, i began worrying as i still didn’t see him coming to me. After a couple of calls i finally saw him come running back to me and i wanted to greet him, so i knelt down wanting to give him a hug. As he got closer i knew something didn’t smell right!!. When Prince finally hugged me i knew what was not smelling right – my boy during his escapade off leash had rolled in a cow dung pat. Much to my disgust i now smelt like cow dung with Prince; i couldn’t shout or push him off because i remembered reading how one must not shout at their dog when they do the recall command for he may hesitate the next time he is off leash to come back to you.

On the way back home i just hoped i didn’t meet anyone that knew either me or Prince smelling like cow dung. It still makes me laugh after all these years thinking about this incident.

Why Do Dogs Roll In Poop?

Don’t dogs do some of the strangest things? Rolling in feces, though, is really very common. Possibly a dog’s ancient instinct to mask his scent, which would then enable the animal to sneak up on their prey without detection. Even if your dog does not hunt, he may not like the way that he smells—especially if you’ve just given him a bath! Or he just likes the smell of the feces. Not much for a pet parents indulgence in aromatic shampoos for their much loved dogs!!

70 thoughts on “The Recall Training Present

  1. Oh no! Funny dog. But at least he came back. I don’t trust my dogs’ recall skills. If they get loose unintentionally in the front yard I literally have to fall down on the ground for them to come to me or throw open a car door. They act crazed with the freedom and don’t respond to “Come” unless I do the aforementioned things.

  2. Oh my goodness, I thought you were going to say Prince came back after being sprayed by a skunk! Well done for you to use positive reinforcement in your training.

  3. Oh gosh, that’s too funny! Quite the present, indeed! Our dog has only ever rolled in his own poo. Still very gross! And luckily, he did it when he was at my in-laws, so I didn’t have to deal with it. The joys of dogsitting!

  4. This is hysterical, Malaika! Recall is one of Gremlin’s best commands (thank goodness). Because of that he gets to hike off leash, giving him every opportunity to roll in as much poo as he wants. Thank goodness it hasn’t happened… YET!

    • Yes it was a riot I saw the humor in it once I was done bathing Prince and I was rid of the stench to. Years have rolled by and I still laugh when I think of it

  5. You’re right…the first time releasing a dog for recall can be scary. I’m glad your pup returned (even when he was a bit stinky). Thanks for sharing your story and training thoughts.

  6. Mine prefer to roll around in dead things, guts especially. About the recall though. Oh my goodness I am having the hardest time with one of my dogs with this. He will play catch me if you can still and he is 2 years old. We are at the point that I think I need to hire a trainer.

    • Just keep at it and I’m sure you will get there. Most dogs love to be chased instead just drop to the ground and pretend that there is something interesting there when he comes treat and praise him. If this doesn’t work for you hiring a Canine Behaviorist – Trainer will be a good idea

    • Thankfully cats don’t do that but I know of one that used to do something really nasty he would chew up his human’s hair. So her human always slept with a shower cap on her head to avoid going bald

    • Yes it was scary letting Prince loose of leash at that time all you are thinking about is whether he is going to come back when you call out to him. When he does though you don’t expect him to be smelling awful though?

  7. I’m glad he came back to you! We had a couple of dogs who ran off to roll in the farmer’s fields after the fields were fertilized. The dogs smelled so terrible, but they were very pleased with themselves. Every time we drive by a stinky field, I am reminded of them.

  8. It’s great you taught your dog a reliable recall. That is so important and life skill that takes practice. Way to go.

  9. The first time I released Layla I left her leash on her just in case and as she got better with recall I removed it, as for rolling oy vey, I call it the Park Perfume as she rolls there in the lawn and then stinks LOL

  10. Oh, my Huskies are all staring at me as I’m laughing out loud over here! The closest we’ve come to cow dung is a dead bird. Yep, our Harley as a pup found one on our walk and asfastasthat she was on it and rolling all around in all of the loveliness of a decaying bird. Ugh. As you can imagine, asfastasthis she was home in the tub getting a bath! Love your story!

    • Thank you for the visit. It’s nice to hear Harley quirky story too about rolling on a decaying bird. The things our dogs do!!

  11. LOL!! I’m laughing so hard at your cow dung incident! Dogs definitely do the strangest things. I’m so glad you opted to train Prince yourself positively and not use a trainer that would use force to train him.

    • I had a little help in training Prince via books, advice etc but of course now its way easier with so many canine trainers/ behaviorists which use positive reinforcement training techniques

  12. Bahaha! Sorry but this sounds like something I’d do before realizing what had happened. Having lived on a farm I’ve seen many “interesting” things that dogs enjoyed rolling in.

  13. It iss vitally imprtant not to shout at a cat or dog, it has a negative effect.

    You did really well showing restraint, I know that sometimes our reaction can be “AgghhH Nooo” and as a result Prince will develop his recall skills so much faster won’t he!?

    • Yes, if i had shouted he would have never wanted to come back to me again while being off leash because of the past unpleasant experience

  14. This is hilarious! Yep, dogs do really gross things 😉 I am still working on recall with Piper. There are very few places where I feel safe enough letting her off leash to practice but we are taking a recall class in the spring so I am hopeful.

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