Game 1: Round Robin Come to Me
Two or more people sit in a circle on the floor or in chairs about ten feet apart from each other. One person calls your dog. When she turns toward the person calling her that person gives her lots of praise and encouragement to come and gives her a tasty treat when she gets there. The next person does
the same thing. Keep trading off who calls your dog and mix it up so she doesn’t anticipate who will be calling her next.
Game 2: Come and Fetch the Toy
Combine your recall training with a game of fetch. Throw a ball or toy. As soon as your dog gets it, call her to you with “come.” When she gets close to you, throw another ball or toy behind you. Repeat. Occasionally have your dog come all the way to you and give her a treat. This is a great way for some dogs to learn a speedy “come when called.”
Game 3: Come and Fetch the Treat
If your dog isn’t motivated by toys, try the fetch game with food that is large enough so your dog can see it, such as cheese puff balls. Roll the treat. As soon as she gets the treat, call her back to you. When she gets to you, roll a treat in the other direction. Repeat. Occasionally have your dog come all the way to you and give her a treat.
Game 4: Come and Catch Me
Your dog may respond quicker when you face away from her, rather than square in front, which she may perceive as confrontational. Call your dog to you with “come.” As soon as she looks at you, pivot and jog away from her. Use your “happy” voice to keep her attention. Most likely, your dog will chase after you. Give her lots of praise when she catches you. Note: children should NOT encourage a dog to chase them.
Game 5: Hide and Seek
Have someone hold your dog in one room while you hide out of sight behind a piece of furniture or around a corner. Call your dog to find you. Make it easy at first, so she’ll easily find you, then gradually make it harder. Give lots of praise, treats and/or play a favorite game when she finds you.