Aw I'm glad your guy's okay, pellegrino. <3
keith wrote:I'm currently trying to teach my dog to be 'off leash' and seem to be making some progress. He's a wolf hybrid and was feral, so his "wolfish side" seems to kick in whenever he sees another animal. He will run straight towards it. Otherwise he's extremely well behaved and responds to commands. I was wondering if anyone possibly has some tips for training.
What do you mean by "teaching your dog to be off leash"?
I'm guessing that you mean "improving recall and responsiveness," in which case the answer is way
too long to cover in a hpn post. I have this blog post on recalls
from a while ago, but it's pretty superficial too. There's a good reason most recall workshops are three weeks long, minimum.
BUT. In the event that you actually have a wolf hybrid and not a dog inaccurately marketed as a wolf hybrid (which, for your sake, is what I very strongly hope
you have), please know: a wolf is not a dog
. Patricia McConnell covers some of the reasons in a blog post here
(comments are worthwhile too). Key quote:
That pretty sums up the two primary differences I’ve seen, and that Ceiridwen experienced, between wolves and dogs: 1) a wolf’s energy level is off the charts; Inyo and Ceiridwen hiked miles and miles to little effect, and 2) Dogs are, at least compared to wolves, motivated to let humans drive the system. Like most wolf-dogs, Inyo came when called, if she felt like it. She sat or lay down when asked, if she felt like it. No amount of training treats or positive reinforcement made any difference if she had another agenda. What was hers was hers, and she was willing to use her teeth to underscore that arrangement.
Again: wolf hybrids are not dogs
. Some can be trained like dogs. Most cannot. That tiny tiny difference in genes causes a HUGE difference in behavior. So if you actually do have a wolf hybrid, I don't know that I can really help you, because dogs have had thousands upon thousands of years and generations to control their own chase-hunt-kill instincts in cooperation with the needs and desires of the people they live with. That makes the training process infinitely easier. A wolf does not have that degree of self-control, or willingness to listen to a human, or whatever else you want to call it. If a wolf wants to run free and attack the neighbor's livestock and guard its kill against you, it will. There's no "training" out of that.