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Discussion Starter #1
So imagine you have a beautiful house in a tiny village called Nowheresville. The property is big/lots of land but no fence. How would you teach your dog where the property border runs? The enviornment is safe - next to no cars)the dog is smart about cars too), no loose dogs except one that`s super smart and gets along with everyone, friendly dog loving neighbours that are OK with your dog being loose.

We were visiting my family and during the holidays and after the first 5 days we decided to bite the bullet and just let her loose while outside... we talked to the neighbours first (she`s not aggressive but is big and can be too enthusiastic at times) and they were ok with it. Everything was PERFECT. Ella was really enjoying it and she has never ever ever ever been this calm and balanced. We`d leave her outside for about 2 hours 3x a day. When she came inside, she`d curl up on her armchair :))) and just sleep for hours ... this doesnt usually happen for more than 30 minutes btw.

The only problem was that she started thinking half of the village is hers to guard. Instead of staying on our territory behind the treeline, she`d sit smack in the middle of the village dirt road in front of the next door neighbours house ... she decided that`s where the perimeter runs.

Also most of the time she`d roam around the village/woods and not stay around the house. She was always in hearing distance and when we called her she always came but it`d be awesome if she didnt leave the territory... (wishful thinking much?)

Any ideas?

Someone suggested tethering her for a longer period of time next to the house as that should make her realize where home is?
 

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I left a leash on Caleb until he learned the property lines (and to stay out of the flowers, and a recall). I started with a 15 foot, then went to a 6 foot one. He's only out loose when we're with him, tho.
 

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With that much space training is going to take along time and really you'll need to be out there working with her. No time loose outside unsupervised. If you do want to put her out unsupervised for awhile then you'll probably want to figure out some way to contain her. Fencing just a smaller portion of your yard, a kennel, tie out, etc. If she isn't contained when unsupervised then she's just going to be constantly reinforced by the environment for leaving your yard. Management and setting her up to be right is key.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
With that much space training is going to take along time and really you'll need to be out there working with her. No time loose outside unsupervised. If you do want to put her out unsupervised for awhile then you'll probably want to figure out some way to contain her. Fencing just a smaller portion of your yard, a kennel, tie out, etc. If she isn't contained when unsupervised then she's just going to be constantly reinforced by the environment for leaving your yard. Management and setting her up to be right is key.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OuTh47i3hOY
thanks!
 

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I think a lot of this depends on the dog. Some dogs I believe, are just not going to be able to have 100% off leashing. All 3 of my dogs I used leash training, and used objects in the yard as pin points. I use a vocal hiss type of command for "no" type behavior, which taught them not to go past say "that tree or that statue". My Chihuahua will never go past the marks, she's very ... structured in that way LOL. My big boy doesn't even think about it, and just does his business and then gives me cuddles. My other dog, forget it. He knows the boundries on a leash, and is very good. Won't pass them, won't really go near them at all. I have a 32ft flexi for him, he never tries to run off or what have you. But the second that leash is off, he's GONE. He's been on the leash for over 2 years now,and he will always be a bolter. This is why I say I think the training you end up using really needs to depend on the dogs personality type, vs yard/surrounding type.
I really have enjoyed leash training for boundries though, because I spend time with my dogs, I can just use simple but stern voice commands, they feel more secure and ...makes me water my flowers :) Also, I never leave my dogs unattended outside either, I believe that just asks for a run off no matter the training!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I`ll try these but I`m also thinking that Ella is just one of those dogs that.. do what they want. Sure treats are yummy and all but only until something better/interesting comes along. Unless I stand there with a raw piece of meat in my hand (works great but hard to do every time) and even then everything depends on how full she is.

we`ll probably build some kind of a dog run/fenced area for her in the future. right now she has a chain she is tethered to ..

But in an ideal world I`d want to let her just explore and run free there... she`s so happy and calm when she gets to do that. Im not worried about the enviornment - it`s really a small village in the middle of nowhere. Everyone knows everyone ... but it`d be polite if she`d stay on her land.
 

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I personally wouldn't let her out unsupervised based on the sound of it. I've seen way too many dogs in this type of situation wander too far, get hit by the one car that passes down the road all day, get in quarrels with the one loose dog in the area, any number of things.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I personally wouldn't let her out unsupervised based on the sound of it. I've seen way too many dogs in this type of situation wander too far, get hit by the one car that passes down the road all day, get in quarrels with the one loose dog in the area, any number of things.
... but but but it makes her so happy. im not worried about the cars - she lived in a beach parking lot as a puppy and it shows.

the one loose dog is her friend, they get along fine.... the other dogs are in fences (and quite far from our house). and while there`s chance that some might get loose, there`s also chance that a brick could fall on my head th next time i go outside - that wont keep me in.

ok, some part of me is worried too. maybe if we`d only set her free in the early mornings and late evenings (like 9pm and on)... she even has a special reflector vest she wears in the dark so Mr Deer can spot her :dog-cool:
 

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Following @kmes advice is really the best solution.

Dogs are like small children. Given the chance they can and will get into trouble of some kind, to be safe please monitor her. I'd hate to see something happen to her.
 

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When we had Greyhounds, we had one female we used to leave loose all the time. She never wandered and was always right there. We did have a fence so she could not go onto the road but otherwise could go for quite a few miles up the fields.

I would have sworn that she never left the yard until one day we were driving down the road which paralleled our property but one property over and there she was in our top field racing for home. When we got home, there she was wagging her tail as if she had never been anywhere.
 

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When we had Greyhounds, we had one female we used to leave loose all the time. She never wandered and was always right there. We did have a fence so she could not go onto the road but otherwise could go for quite a few miles up the fields.

I would have sworn that she never left the yard until one day we were driving down the road which paralleled our property but one property over and there she was in our top field racing for home. When we got home, there she was wagging her tail as if she had never been anywhere.
lol, she wasa smart girl, didn't want to get into trouble.;)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Following @kmes advice is really the best solution.

Dogs are like small children. Given the chance they can and will get into trouble of some kind, to be safe please monitor her. I'd hate to see something happen to her.
But I`ve seen smart dogs - like the loose one in our village - he is super smart and does not resemble a child in one bit... I believe that given the chance to learn and develope dogs can become very environment-savy .. think of street dogs all over the world. But yes, there`s always a risk and I think that they pretty much either smarten up really fast or die tryin...

gah.

wish we could just put a fence around the darn thing.
 

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But I`ve seen smart dogs - like the loose one in our village - he is super smart and does not resemble a child in one bit... I believe that given the chance to learn and develope dogs can become very environment-savy .. think of street dogs all over the world. But yes, there`s always a risk and I think that they pretty much either smarten up really fast or die tryin...

gah.

wish we could just put a fence around the darn thing.
The reason you don't see childlike street dogs is (a) the childlike ones die, and (b) the more feral dogs get, the more they lose neotony, which is a feature of domestication, which is what causes the childlike quality. It's inappropriate to compare a truly domesticated pet to a feral animal.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The reason you don't see childlike street dogs is (a) the childlike ones die, and (b) the more feral dogs get, the more they lose neotony, which is a feature of domestication, which is what causes the childlike quality. It's inappropriate to compare a truly domesticated pet to a feral animal.
that`s very interesting. although i think you`re neglecting a lot of "gray area" between the two. for an example, the loose dog in the village is not homeless or feral - he is a pet. he just can come and go as he pleases. he starts his day (after breakfast i assume) by doing the village check then he goes back home and does the village check again in the evening. when his owner goes somewhere in the village (the store, to visit someone etc) he goes with him. owner usually bikes and the dog runs along. when the owner goes into someone`s home, the dog sits and waits patiently. he gets along with everyone, is not overly friendly with strangers - rather takes his time to evaluate them from a far but once`s he knows you, he comes and greets you merrily. he gets along with every other dog in the village, even the mad, 24/7 on the chain ones. he is smart and i believe he`s like this because he has had to learn on his own.
 
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