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I am trying to work on the come command with my 9 month old pup. He does it extremely well inside the house. When we are outside he doesn't usually listen. The largest obstacle is that he is over the top fixated on our chickens. When I take him outside he wants to go to the coop and will try to drag me there on lead. If he is loose, he runs around and around the coop. The girls don't even have to be in their run. So working with him on the come command outside is very challenging.

 

I have tried taking him to the coop with yummy treats, and while on lead I say come and gently tug. He eventually comes and I praise and treat. But I don't feel like I'm getting anywhere. He can't play ball with the kids because he drops the ball and goes to the coop.

 

Help!!!

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I would work on "come" a lot off leash somewhere else. Find a fenced in park or neighbor's yard, an unused public tennis court, a large field - anywhere you can work on this safely. Work on it inside too.

 

Meanwhile, don't tell him to come when you are outside and he is distracted by the coop. If there is not a reasonable good chance he will come, it's just practicing disobedience. I would give him his "off leash" time somewhere else for a while.

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You can use a long, lightweight line like a clothes-line to let him practice the "come" command in another location, like a park. (If he drags you over to the chicken coop on his leash, a longer line won't help that problem.)

 

It sounds like he has a lot of prey drive. Whether that calms down or not as he gets older will be hard to predict. You should probably keep up the treat-training near the crate if he ignores the chooks and makes eye contact with you.

 

Good luck.

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Thanks for the tips! He seems overly overly fixated. It is kind of funny the way he crouches down and hides behind trees thinking they don't see him, but at the same time we can't play with him the way we want to because he is more interested in him. Training has slacked off here since our house is still under renos but I've given myself a kick and starting it up again.

 

Thanks for the help!

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Don't let him near there, Practice right by the back door. Once he can focus on you there move one foot closer to the coop and start over. Don't move closer untill he is doing well where you are. Also, you could always use the coop as a motivator...in other words, when you are far away from the coop position yourself only about a foot away from him and call him to come. If he does praise him and immediately run with him over to the coop to sniff it. That way the reward for coming is to check out the coop. If he doesn't come he doesn't get to go near the coop.

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