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I have a 6 month old Yorkshire Terrier puppy who I have just started to let off the lead in the park. Her recall is pretty good, except when she sees other people and dogs - she races over at full pelt and no amount of calling and ham can get her back until she's said hello!

Thing is she always jumps up at people, and today a lady screamed at her and kicked her in the park because she got muddy paw prints on her child's white tights (why bring a child to the park wearing white?!). I think the lady massively overreacted, but I know I need to try and train her out of this but no idea how. Does anyone have any ideas on getting her to stop running over to people and jumping on them? She is just such a social and excitable little thing, she is only small too so she's not dangerous but I can see how it would be scary for small kids etc. I want to carry on letting her off the lead as I feel like she needs to practice this, but don't want a repeat of what happened today!
 

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Was this a dog park that was fenced in or a regular park? If it isn't the dog park please always keep your dog on leash unless you get a reliable recall. People do not have to interact with your dog. It can be scary (even with a small puppy) for children and even sometimes adults who are afraid of dogs. Its your responsibility to make sure your dog does not bother other people or dogs. If I had a small child and saw a dog running full speed at it I would worry about my child's safety even if it was a small dog. You can your pup seriously hurt if it meets the wrong person or dog. If it was in a dog park I might have kicked the lady back, its her fault for bringing a kid to a dog park.

Puppies between the ages of 6 months to 1.5 (sometimes more depending on the dog) years tend to be unreliable with recall. Younger they get comfort in being around their owner but then they get their confidence and hit their teenage I don't have to listen stage. Keep training recall at home and with a longline in the park. If your pup doesn't listen act like they've never been taught it before and start fresh.

Kikopup has some wonderful videos for jumping up and recall training for puppies. I would suggest giving them a watch. Thats exactly how I'm going to be training my pup.

Recall
Recall with Distractions
Stop Jumping Up
 

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I don't know if this is applicable to your case but make sure that you never allow jumping up at home.

A lot of times someone in a house hold will encourage the jumping with a hug or a laugh.

One suggestion I would give would be to treat the not running out to great people, the not jumping and the verbal recall as 3 different training objectives.

Start with the not jumping up. Then move on to her not straying, and then work on recall.

Does she know 'down' or 'sit'. A good way to work on the not jumping is to use one of those commands she already knows to keep her in a certain position.
 

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I have a 6 month old Yorkshire Terrier puppy who I have just started to let off the lead in the park. Her recall is pretty good, except when she sees other people and dogs - she races over at full pelt and no amount of calling and ham can get her back until she's said hello!

Thing is she always jumps up at people, and today a lady screamed at her and kicked her in the park because she got muddy paw prints on her child's white tights (why bring a child to the park wearing white?!). I think the lady massively overreacted, but I know I need to try and train her out of this but no idea how. Does anyone have any ideas on getting her to stop running over to people and jumping on them? She is just such a social and excitable little thing, she is only small too so she's not dangerous but I can see how it would be scary for small kids etc. I want to carry on letting her off the lead as I feel like she needs to practice this, but don't want a repeat of what happened today!
M dog does that too, sometimes people with yorkie sized dogs are terrified until my dog comes wagging her tail. I would be careful that a larger dog on a leash didn't hurt the York.
 

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You need a better recall before letting your dog off-leash in those situations. It is totally normal for a six month old puppy to still need work developing a solid recall! Until her recall is reliable in the face of any distractions, don't test in high-distraction settings (around people and other dogs)...you're not giving her a chance to practice good off-leash behavior, you're giving her a chance to practice ignoring her recall cue (making her recall much worse over time), as well as rehearse inappropriate behavior.

The problem is not that she's greeting people rudely. It's that she's greeting people and dogs whether or not they want to be greeted, and you have zero control over her in those situations. You need to be able to call your dog away from people and dogs, for their own comfort/safety as well as the safety of your own dog.

If you need help figuring out how to make a recall more reliable, I think there are some resources in the training stickies above. Recall is essential for safety reasons, as you've just discovered -- having an unreliable recall just led to your puppy getting kicked. Worse things are possible. She could run up to a dog who reacts to small dogs as prey, for instance, and be lucky to survive the experience. For some perspective on how it feels to have out-of-control dogs approach you, and why it's not okay, check out this blog post: My Dog is Friendly! A Public Service Announcement | notes from a dog walker

Your dog can practice off-leash in fenced areas where there aren't other people/dogs, like back yards belonging to friends (or empty fields or sporting facilities, if your town has something appropriate). Building a solid recall now means a lifetime of more freedom for your dog, so the work is totally worth it. Not to mention, recall games can be an absolute blast, and are one of my favorite ways to have fun with a dog. Play safe, have fun, and wait until she's developed a better skill set before putting her in those situations again.
 

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My response will vary wildly between whether or not this is a regular unfenced park, or a dog park.

Dog park - I personally don't like children in dog parks. Some children are terrified of dogs, and some dogs aren't great with children. Cosmo is even nervous around children, and many children that I've met don't have proper dog manners. I've had children hit my dog with sticks at the dog park and grab onto his fur and skin while he was running to get him to stop. I've had peoples children hug him when he clearly doesn't want to be hugged and chase him when he runs away. My dog has knocked over a child at a dog park because it was running towards him while he was running past and I've been told off for not having a "well behaved dog".

If this lady came into a dog park with a child wearing white tights and kicked a yorkie puppy off of her kid for getting them a little dirty - then there's something wildly wrong with her behavior and she shouldn't have her kid in white at a dog park unless she expects a little dirt and her kid is well behaved.

Open park - I would be very irritated if someone let their dog off leash with unreliable recall in any situation - and especially if this dog was charging me and leaping all over me. Just because your dog is small doesn't mean it's okay. Sometimes I like wearing nice things to the park and I don't want a dog all over me, and not to mention even small dogs can have sharp nails. If I was wearing shorts I don't want my legs cut up by a dog - its happened to me multiple times where dogs have jumped up to greet me and their claws rake down my legs and it's annoying and uncomfortable and painful.

So in that situation I either have dirtied pants or clawed legs and either is rude to allow your dog to do in a place where it's not assumed beforehand that it will probably happen - or at least has a high possibility of happening like a dog park. I don't wear nice clothes to a dog park and I certainly don't wear shorts unless it's really hot and I've accepted my fate.

First, don't let your dog off lead in unfenced areas. If your dog saw a person across the path of an oncoming vehicle, you may end up with a dead puppy. "Pretty good" isn't good enough when your dogs life could be at risk, and it's rude to let your dog jump all over people.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lC_OKgQFgzw

Kikopup is an excellent trainer who uses positive reinforcement. Here's one of her videos about jumping up :)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The notion of a "dog park" seems to be perhaps an American thing, as we don't really have them here in the UK; parks are just parks, some are gated in and some aren't. People walk dogs in every kind of park here, there is no such thing as specific dog parks. It was a really big country park with huge fields and woods where lots of people walk dogs.

Her recall is perfect in our garden (which is very long so perfect for practicing) because there are no distractions; she comes back every single time. I am clearly approaching the whole recall thing wrong then, as I thought that for her to learn how to come back with distractions I would just literally have to practice it with her in as many safe places as possible, rewarding her heavily each time she comes back? I can practice and practice in our garden and she will be fine because there are no exciting dogs and people, so how will I know when she is ready to do it in a park?

I practiced with her in parks on a long lead many times and she was great at coming back the first time when called. There just seems to be something about the freedom of being off the lead that makes her too excited to listen.

I will watch some of the suggested videos, thanks.
 

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Her recall is perfect in our garden (which is very long so perfect for practicing) because there are no distractions; she comes back every single time. I am clearly approaching the whole recall thing wrong then, as I thought that for her to learn how to come back with distractions I would just literally have to practice it with her in as many safe places as possible, rewarding her heavily each time she comes back? I can practice and practice in our garden and she will be fine because there are no exciting dogs and people, so how will I know when she is ready to do it in a park?.
You're not doing it the wrong way. You just need to keep it up, reinforcing it more and more and you need to introduce distractions slowly.

It takes time.

You'll never no for sure that she's ready to do it in a park, even a trained dog could ignore a recall command. You'll develop a sense of her recall and be ready for the fact that she could not recall.

I'll go back to what I said in my previous post, don't mix the issues practice having her heel while walking in the park with a long line (don't hold the end, just let it drag). Reward her for staying in her 'heel' and if she bolts step on the line to stop her.

I asked on here about getting a whistle a year ago and I like the idea of it. Dogs and puppies in particular can be pretty single minded, even if you're screaming "come here" it might not even register, where as a training whistle will be very distinctive and might better grab her attention.

Also, don't treat if she doesn't come the first time. Thats the biggest mistake we all make (myself included) if you do you're just teaching her to ignore you.
 

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She's young, I would suggest using a long line so she doesn't have the option to run away. That would be better than just letting her run up to random people and jump all over them.

When she successfully comes back after you call her when she's going after something like a person or dog more than once (it becomes a pattern of her obeying) then you know she's ready. Until then she's not and I wouldn't trust her off leash until then. She could run up to greet someone who has a dog aggressive dog on leash and that would be bad. My friends husky would pick her up in his mouth and shake her if she ran up to his owner because he has intense prey drive and that's why she keeps him on leash. That would be your fault if your dog ended up injured or killed so it's super important to not let your dog run up to just anyone or trust them off leash.
 

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Also do treat her no matter when she comes in my opinion! She needs to see coming to you as the best thing in the world and when she does it you have to make her think she is the best dog in the world.
 

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At 6 months old your dog is still an adolescent and likely to push the boundaries. Having a good recall in the garden which is a very familiar (and therefore, possibly a boring) place, doesn't mean she will recall reliably in a place full of exciting things, new smells, new dogs, children to jump on..... I would use a long line so that she doesn't have the option of not coming back when called. And I would teach recall in the park. Have you been to a training class with her? You could both learn so much.

I would be very annoyed if a strange dog jumped all over me or my child regardless of what we were wearing. I wouldn't, however, kick the dog, unless, of course, I feared injury.
 

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You can practice in new places with lower distractions (like friends' yards, fenced tennis courts or other public sports facilities, or anywhere you can think of that is securely contained and doesn't have lots of other dogs & people). Going from a quiet, familiar, unchanging yard to a busy park is a huge leap in difficulty. Like if you've practiced paddling across the shallow end of a swimming pool fifty times, and then went straight to swimming across the English Channel, all as part of your "learn to swim" plan. It helps to practice some intermediate-level challenges before the Channel! Around here, there are an increasing number of recall classes being offered, so it might be worth checking out what fun options are available where you are.

You can also practice increasing the distractions in your own garden, since that is the easiest place for you to be training. What you want to do is to create ENORMOUS value for returning to you, and only slightly increase the difficulty of choosing to do so.

So for instance, you could choose two toys, one boring (something she's not that enchanted with) and one superlative (something she is OVER THE MOON excited about). In your garden, hold both toys behind your back. Toss the boring toy twenty feet away. As she heads for it, call for her while running away, and when she gets to you, produce the amazing toy (or, if toys are really not her thing, the amazing food treats) and reward her generously. That's a distraction, but it's one that should be a lot easier than a park full of fabulous new friends.

If you haven't already, I suggest checking out the recall sticky and this one: http://www.dogforum.com/training-behavior-stickies/impulse-control-calmness-168218/
 

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I just picked up a new book for my shelf, and it made me remember this topic. The book is by trainer Denise Fenzi and is called Beyond the Back Yard: Train Your Dog to Listen Anytime, Anywhere! Full disclosure: I've only skimmed through it and read a few sections, but so far, it looks great, and I think it might be a good resource for you.

It's a book written for the person who already understands how to help their dog acquire new behaviors (someone whose dog sits nicely in the kitchen, or comes every time in the back yard), but who is trying to help the dog learn to perform those same behaviors out in the big, distracting world. Besides giving the theory, it has a whole section that gives step-by-step instructions on how to get behaviors solid in the face of increasingly high-value distractions. I love practical books!
 

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If there are other dogs around, I'd be super concerned about letting my tiny yorkie puppy approach them off leash with no manners! Many dogs, especially leashed ones, will NOT take kindly to being rushed by a small off leash dog. She could get seriously hurt or even killed by a larger dog asking her to back off. A long line is your best bet for everyone's safety. Not to mention I'd be horribly annoyed if a dog came rushing up on me while I was minding my own business, size not even being a factor imo.
 

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Don'T let your dog run to other people or dogs.
as long your dog has this kind of behaviour, keep it on the leash. especially small dogs can be strongly injured when kicked or hit by a person or getting in a conflict with a not-so-dog-friendly bigger dog.
Some dogs really don't like other dogs and it is extremely annoying to try to block a wriggly, excited, tiny puppy to keep it from getting eaten by your dog.

your dog is small, but for a lot of people that doesn't matter.
if you are scared of dogs, you'll be very likely as scared of a Yorkshire Terrier puppy as you'd be of an adult English Mastiff. Dog is dog.
Don't bring people in the situation that they're so scared they hurt another living being.

it can always happen that something goes wrong and the dog is on the run. especially with puppies.
when Sancho was puppy we had a leather leash for him and one time he was so excited about seeing a woman with a pushchair that he snapped the leash.
he just went there happily greeting the toddler in the pushchair (my dogs logic is children= awesome, adults = suspicious, ignore it so it might go away) but the woman really was startled and fell on her behind.
it happens.
you say sorry you, take the dog away from them, you look if there was any damage, if there's damage you pay for it, if a person gets hurts either get them to a doctor or atleast give them the adress of your insurance company, say sorry again.
then you may go away.
I hope you gave the woman a bit of compensation money for the extra cleaning of the cloths.
it is good manners to do as a dog owner. :)
 
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