Teach Your Dog How To Behave When In The Backyard
A lot of people take the precautions of keeping their new dog in a mistake free environment inside their house when left unattended until the dog can be trusted to have more freedom, but often neglect to take the same precautions when leaving their dog alone outside.
Outdoor management, prevention and training is just as important as it is inside the house. In the same way your new dog can learn extremely undesirable behaviors while left alone in the house, like destroying your couch and ripping up your carpet, he can learn a number of undesirable and potentially dangerous habits while unattended in your yard. Some possibilities are digging holes, escaping from your yard, eating plants or debris, chewing on the side of your house or chewing on your outdoor furniture and belongings.
Should you leave your dog unattended outside?
Where I live, it is potentially dangerous to leave a dog alone outside because of thieves, coyotes, mountain lions, bobcats, snakes, fire ants, scorpions, bee swarms, flies, wasps, and even birds of prey so I do not suggest it to my clients. However, often people like to allow their dogs some time outside while they are home and able to check on their dog from time to time.
The solution to training a dog how to behave when unattended outside is the same as inside:
What about crates?
Use An Invisible Fence/gps Tracking Collar System
One of the most high tech solutions for keeping a dog from wandering off is to use an invisible fence or GPS tracking collar. These products allow you to track the location of your dog from an app on your phone. Some even allow you to create a virtual fence and give your alerts/notifications when your dog crosses it.
Three: Add In Distraction To Your Dog’s Stay Cue
Now that you’ve gotten your dog used to holding their Stay for a longer period of time and while you’ve walked a distance away, it’s time to start to generalize this behavior to “proof” it against distractions.
In this step, you’ll start to practice Stay in different environments. If you’ve been practicing inside your home, think about what is an easy step up distraction-wise this might just be a different room of the house or in your fenced backyard. Lower your criteria for the distance and duration of your dog’s Stay when introducing distraction to set you and your dog up for success.
For example, your dog might be able to hold their Down-Stay for 20 seconds while you walk into the kitchen 10 feet away, but when you practice outside with all the sights, sounds, and smells of the great big world, start with a 3 to 5 second Stay with no distance added. Then build up from there!
With repetition and consistency, your dog will be able to hold their Stay for longer, at further distances, and in a variety of places.
Change up where you practice your dog’s Stay as they get better and better, always taking into account to lower the duration, distance, or both if distractions are high. My favorite place to practice my dog’s Stay around distractions is sitting outside a local coffee shop. I just throw down a small bath mat for her next to my chair, sip my coffee, and toss a treat or release her from her Stay intermittently.
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Boundary Training With Sit Command
This process works up more slowly to help with training your dog if it has a difficult time resisting distractions.
- Useful commands: Stay, sit, leave it
- Necessary equipment: Leash and collar, treats, boundary flags
- Location: In your yard
Walk around your yard perimeter with your pup on a leash, and point several times to the boundary line as you work your way around. Optionally, you can use brightly colored boundary flags or some other type of marker to aid in demonstrating the boundary line. Do several laps around the perimeter for a few days.
Next, instead of pointing, walk your dog while waving your arm over the area to remind your pup of the bounded space in which it can walk. Walk around the yard four or more times each session, three times. By now, your pup should start to walk within the boundary reasonably consistently.
After a week of perimeter walking, stop at various points around the boundary and give your dog the sit command and reward each time your pet obeys.
Next, try giving your dog the stay command, and while it stays, walk outside the boundary line. If your dog follows you, take it by the leash and bring it back inside the boundary. Reward once your pup is back inside the yard. If your dog stays within the perimeter as you walk out, return inside and reward your pet.
Establish Neighborhood Watch To Stop Neighbor’s Pooping In My Yard
A survey shows that dog poop ranks the 6th place on a list of Americans’ biggest everyday annoyances, which indicates that the dog feces issue is a common concern.
To “keep neighbor’s dog out of my yard”, you may unite with your neighbors to start a neighborhood watch program, which is a lot easier than you may think. Here are some of the major steps:
- Step 1. Contact local authorities and consult them about the local ordinances on the neighbor’s-dog-in-my-yard issue.
- Step 2. Organize meetings to establish etiquette for dog owners and how to deal with the neighbor’s-dog issues at a regular time.
- Step 3. Spread the words around your neighborhood.
- Step 4. Be visionary to the problems that the program will meet now or in the future, such as how to settle neighbor disputes and how to guide new neighbors.
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Reinforcing The Positive While Avoiding The Pitfalls And Expense
Boundary training reinforces for your dog that the yard is always the best option. Over time and with practice, your dog will want exactly what you want: to stay in the yard! Positively training a boundary, when it is coupled with a reliable recall, can be at least as effective as an electronic containment system in keeping your dog in your yard. Significantly, boundary training comes without the financial cost of an electronic system, not to mention potential behavior and stress consequences to you and your dog.
Steve Benjamin, KPA CTP, is a KPA faculty member and the owner of in Endicott, NY. Steve specializes in teaching clicker training to his clients, helping them teach their dogs to be socially acceptable, happy, and intelligent family pets.
Reasons To Keep Your Dog In Your Yard
Keeping any dog loose in a yard can be unsafe for many reasons. Even a puppy who may at first remain by your side will eventually want to explore the worldand take off to do so.
Any dog may run away, but certain breeds are more likely to do so than others. Huskies and Alaskan Malamutes are known to be wanderers and to attempt to escape from even a fenced yard.
Hunting dogs like golden and labrador retrievers are prone to chase prey. So are terriers like Yorkies and westies if they see a squirrel running across their path.
And herding dogs like Aussies, shelties, and border collies are programmed to chase moving objects like cars or people on bikes or skateboards.
When a dogs natural drives kick in, its dangerous for them to be loose against such attractions.
Of course, any dog may wander off when he sees something that interests him, such as an approaching dog or personor even a paper food wrapper that may be passing by your property.
And any dog may be called to chase wildlife should a deer or an errant groundhog emerge.
These dogs may inadvertently run away and face many dangers. Unfortunately, they may be hit by a car and injured or killed. Its a horrible thought, but it must be taken into account when judging how to confine your dog.
Some type of confinement may be required under the law where you live. And, if your dog isnt confined by a method specified under that law, you may be subject to fines. Sometimes, dogs are even confiscated under similar laws.
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Implied Stay Versus A Cued Stay
When I start working with a client and their dog on the stay cue, my first question is “Do you want to have to say ‘stay’ or would you prefer not to have to say anything to have this behavior happen?”
There is no wrong answer to this question, it’s simply a matter of preference. I personally prefer what’s called an Implied Stay, meaning that if I ask my dog to perform a stationary behavior , she will move into that position and hold it until I ask her for something else or tell her she’s all done. The stay is implied in the first cue.
A Cued Stay is where the dog has a hand signal or a verbal cue that means “hold this position,” separate from the hand signal or verbal cue for sit, down or stand. Some dog owners prefer to give a separate stay cue because of habit or they like the reminder for the dog and themselves. The one downside to relying on a separate cue for stay is that if you forget to give the hand signal or say the word “stay,” and your dog moves before they are supposed to, they didn’t make any mistake. If you’re planning on using a stay cue, make sure you remember to use it during training and later on in real-life scenarios.
Tip 1 Always Keep Your Dogs On Leash & Attended
In some places, there are strict dog control ordinances requiring that dogs within the city shall be on leash or under control. So it can be against the bylaws that you let your dogs run free to poop in your neighbor’s yard.
To prevent your dogs from defecating randomly, it is best to keep them leashed on a walk and also confine them indoors or within certain areas when you are not at home.
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More Tips For Keeping Your Dog From Escaping The Yard
No matter how your dog escapes the yard, there are several other measures you can take to ensure their safety.
If your dog does escape from the yard, its important to remember that you should not punish your dog when you find them, or when they return. Punishing them wont eliminate the desire to escape, and it may make them afraid to return to your yard.
Lastly, contingency measures like a microchip or a GPS-enabled collar make it much more likely that if your runaway pup does escape, he is found safe and sound as soon as possible after the fact. You cant put a price on peace of mind, so prepare now before your pups next attempted escape.
How To Stop Livestock Guardian Dogs From Wandering
She describes one of her dogs as a scout dog. She likes to check fence lines, patrol, and check for places where a predator could potentially get in. In her younger years she was always finding ways out of the fence and would actively walk the fence and push on it to find any weak points.
The best solution is to have good fences and a strand or two of electric fence as an enforcement, says April.
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Reinforcing Behavior You Want
If you havent used a clicker, you should try it. Heres why: When your dog is being rowdy, its so much easier to click a second of calm, followed in a few seconds by a treat, than to catch your dogs moment of quiet without a clicker. By the time you give your dog a treat, without the click first, your dog may be wound up again and think that he is being rewarded for his crazy behavior. Its just hard to get the timing right.
How do you get started? Click/treat, click/treat ten times until its clear that your dog understands that the click means a treat is coming. Your dog doesnt have to do anything while you teach him what the clicker is. After that, you can use the clicker to identify either a skill or a behavior that you want. For example, if you are teaching sit, you click when your dogs butt hits the ground followed by the treat. When you want your dog to stop jumping, you click the moment your dog has all four feet on the floor followed by the treat. Im sure you have heard a million times that dogs repeat behaviors that are rewarded. Guess what? Its true.
I-clicks are easier and quieter than box clickers. However, if you have trouble with the clicker or if your dog is afraid of the sound, you can use a word, like YES, or click with your mouth. When you read clicker in this handout, you can substitute either of these. Please give the clicker a chance, though.
How Do I Keep My Dog From Leaving The Yard
The best way to keep your pup from leaving the yard and racing all over the neighborhood is to offer plenty of incentives. You should spend a lot of playtime with your dog, take time for a lot of pets and snuggles, and offer favorite treats. Dog owners should start training their dogs as early as possible. Even young puppies are capable of understanding simple commands.
You should teach your dog to obey the commands:
Its a good idea also to use clicker training. When youre inside your house with your dog, practice the commands several times a day. When youre going outside, practice the commands inside before you open the door. Obedience training is effective for:
- Outside playtime in the yard
- Going for walks
- Trips to the dog park
Trips to the veterinarian may be less stressful for dogs and owners if the dog has proper training and responds positively to commands.
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Removing Stray Dogs From Your Yard
Try Bottled Water To Keep Dogs Away
Most dogs wont go where there is food or water. Some homeowners have found success by placing large pop bottles or milk jugs filled with water around the borders of their yard. Space them every 3 feet or so. This can help to discourage dogs from going to your yard because they see the water and stay away from it.
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Teaching Your Dog To Lie Down
Negotiate With Neighbors Who Leave Their Dogs Pooping In My Garden
After seeing neighbor’s dog pooping in my yard, I will knock on my neighbor’s door, tell them what I have seen and ask them to stop letting their dogs poop in my yard.
In my experience, most kind neighbors are sorry for that and promise me that they will be careful next time.
To make your negotiation go smoother, the following tips may help:
Here is a possible scene:
At Sunday morning
And, that’s it!
A quite easy and effective solution, huh?
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