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Discussion Starter #1
My dog knows many commands and can execute them expertly...when he decides he wants to grace me with his obedience.

When we are inside he is no problem at all (usually) and will listen to me every time. Unless there is someone over (only for the first 5 minutes though).

If we are outside it is absolutely ridiculous. It's so random with him..sometimes he listens perfectly outside for many days in a row. Then randomly he decides he doesn't care a lick about what I have to say to him down to not even turning an ear when I call his name.

Sometimes he will not come or even acknowledge the fact that I am speaking. This gets extremely frustrating...

I've tried the whole running around trying to get him to chase me thing, the just go and he will follow you thing, food...when he is in one of these phases he just doesn't care. Everything and anything is more interesting than me.

He gets plenty of exercise and play time in and out doors. Has a good healthy diet and everything.

The question I now ask is this...if I neuter him will this behavior stop? He will be turning two this October. I was going to wait until thenish to fix him because I wanted him to be completely done growing before I had that done to him (large breed dog).

I ask though because if it will fix it I will get it done sooner because I can't stand this anymore.

Sorry for the long post I just wanted to hopefully answer as many questions as possible for anyone out there. Thank you for taking the time to read all of this.
 

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Neutering may or may not change a dog. Usually it doesn't, so it's okay to not rush. The only thing you can do that will correct this behavior is training over and over and over.....
 

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I think that you need to become the center in his world. All good things come from you. When you talk he listens. Treat him as if he is the golden boy. Do you gift him with stuffed kongs, take him for special walks? With the commands and training, maybe you need to back up and treat him for doing the command.

But seriously, the more I work with my dogs, the more attentive they are to me.
 

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It just takes time. You need to keep practicing and rewarding the positive behavior so that the dog becomes conditioned to respond to your requests. You also need to gradually work from low-distraction situations (like the house) to higher distraction situations. Don't expect him to perform as obediently in a crowded park with squirrels as he would in your living room... Start in the living room with just the two of you, then the living room with people over, then the back yard, then maybe while walking around a familiar route, then a quiet park, then a busier park, etc. You get the point :) And make sure you really get good performance at each place before moving up to the next; each time you move to a place with more distractions, you may have to do some re-training and go back to basics somewhat.

And if food doesn't motivate him, you'll have to find what does. Could be squeaky toys, a flirt pole, a ball to chase, a good scratch, whatever!

Having said all that, as much as we train and condition responses, dogs can still make choices, and those aren't always to listen 100% of the time. My dog has a pretty much perfect recall... except when she doesn't feel like leaving the dog park! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
So I should go back to basics with him and work my way up? This will be a bit difficult in my household because my parents have dogs too and they are untrained terrors (they are not that bad, but compared to my dog they never listen they always do what they want) and it's nigh impossible to get them to respect the fact that sometimes their dogs need to be put in their room or controlled for a few minutes (like 10-15ish). If I put them in their room and directly tell them it's because I'm training they will be like...ok...and then a few minutes later let them out then I have to deal with them trying to steal all the treats. My dog will still listen to me when they are pushing around him trying to get his treats, but it's hard to give my dog the treats.

Also I don't know many cooperative people who would be willing to come over and help me and when I try to work on my dogs behavior when people come over my dad things I'm being annoying because I keep talking to my dog. Maybe I could move to hand signals or something when they are over I don't know. I love my dog so much and I cuddle with him and pet him and stuff all the time and I even let him sleep with me (though because of the summer he has been sleeping on the floor next to my bed where I am because he gets to warm to be comfy).

I will start working with him again on a daily basis though until he is a better dog more consistently. Because when he listens he is great. Everyone I have ever shown him to is impressed by how much he knows and by how well he does it.

He doesn't know much for actual "tricks," but he does know a lot of useful commands.
Here is what he can do:
Sit
Down (lay down not off of something down)
Stay (Amazing stay most of the time I can walk around the whole house and he won't budge even sit and eat something and he won't move. Outside on one of his good days he

will stay on one side of the yard and I can walk to the other side of the yard and he won't move even if there is a car coming home or something. It's more than an acre wide.)

Back up
Drop
Leave it
No (I consider this a command because if he is walking around and I say no I can use it to stop him and have him go a different direction or to leave something alone or whatever.)
Come
Get (like to move out of the way)
Wait
Okay
and a fun trick where I put a treat on his nose and tell him to wait. He will wait for the end of the world for me to say okay and let him eat it lol.

Also when I sit on the floor with my legs in a V I used to have to pat to have him come and lay all cozied up to me in front of me so I could brush him or whatever and now I just sit and say his name and he comes up all happy and lays down into the position lol it's quite cute.

He likes to be brushed which surprises me lol and he will be patient for nail clipping and when I go into the bathroom to give him a bath I just say "bathtub" or "get in the bath" and he goes over and hops right in which is useful for giving him a bath. I also just do it randomly that way it's not always for a bath lol.

I guess he doesn't know that much when I list it off, but I'm happy with what he knows.

Sorry for the long post again I tend to do that.



To Bosco, yes I do basic training with him outside too and when we are training I am his focus and he listens. It's just for when I let him to go to the bathroom really that there is the biggest problem.
 

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Sounds like you have an awesome start with him! It would definitely help to work with him without the other dogs around; just like people, dogs need focus to learn. Once you have him doing things well in a peaceful environment, just start thinking of ways to gradually add distractions, and reteach the same concepts in each scenario. Oh, and hand signals are awesome, too. I always teach a verbal cue and a hand signal. Honestly, it sounds like you two are doing great, though. It does take time, but just have fun with the process! :)
 

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Sounds like you have a good start. Now you need to GRADUALLY add in your distractions. As you add those you will go back to helping your dog more and having a higher rate of reinforcement (better, more frequent rewards). Do not ask for a behavior if you don't have a way to help your dog give it. I make it a point that my dog needs to be looking at me before I give a cue.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I will try this and I will talk to my parents about how it is important to me for him to be a good dog so they need to cooperate when I'm training him by not letting their dogs butt in every time.

Another thing is when I do the wait trick with the food on his nose they are always just like...give it to him already you are being mean...even when it's only been a few seconds. Every time I tell them it's good self control practice for him.
 

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If you haven't trained him outside, then you can't assume he knows he's supposed to do his commands outside. Dogs don't generalize well, so you have to practice his things in all different situations and with differing levels of distraction.
 

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I have trained him outside and as I said before when we are training outside he is super focused on me and listens well.
But sometimes he doesn't? I mean, that's the subject line of this post. You need to figure out what is different when he doesn't and train for it.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
It's usually only when I'm letting him out to go to the bathroom. Do you think maybe he just doesn't want to come back inside? I don't always call him just to take him back inside when we do this I do it sometimes because he is going to far or I want to give him a treat to try to train him to come when I call him.
 

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It's usually only when I'm letting him out to go to the bathroom. Do you think maybe he just doesn't want to come back inside? I don't always call him just to take him back inside when we do this I do it sometimes because he is going to far or I want to give him a treat to try to train him to come when I call him.
It's very important when training recall to make sure you make it super awesome and not an end to fun. It's a mistake a lot of people make.

The fact of the matter is, inside you're the most interesting thing around. Outside, you're like no. 53 on the list of interesting things, so it is hard to get your dog to pay attention. Plus, dogs don't generalize well, so it's very common for a dog to think that "sit" only applies inside, or only in the living room, or only on the rug. The only way to get past this is training, training and more training.

It took a month of training before I could get Kabota to sit outside 1 time in 10. After 3 months, he'll do it almost always, but if he sees a rabbit, forget it. We're working on it.

ETA: I doubt he'll ever be reliable off leash. Some dogs aren't.
 

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It's very important when training recall to make sure you make it super awesome and not an end to fun. It's a mistake a lot of people make.

The fact of the matter is, inside you're the most interesting thing around. Outside, you're like no. 53 on the list of interesting things, so it is hard to get your dog to pay attention. Plus, dogs don't generalize well, so it's very common for a dog to think that "sit" only applies inside, or only in the living room, or only on the rug. The only way to get past this is training, training and more training.

It took a month of training before I could get Kabota to sit outside 1 time in 10. After 3 months, he'll do it almost always, but if he sees a rabbit, forget it. We're working on it.

ETA: I doubt he'll ever be reliable off leash. Some dogs aren't.
Is this why, with an acreage and dog door and lots of outside time and always a pack of three or more, I have such trouble training recall with mine? Often mine aren't even somewhat reliable for a few years . . . I wait for maturity to help.

If that is the case what is the proposal for those of us that spend lots of time outside with pups from the very beginning? This might sound silly but I've never considered doing much training inside . . . mostly all outside work here.

Not to high-jack the thread as I think the recommendations will help the OP as well.

SOB
 

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If you have a dog who won't come inside, part of the answer is to call him inside WHILE he is on leash, give him a treat inside, then take off the collar and let him right back outside until he wants to come in. Call him inside at mealtimes. Once he starts coming in willingly, continue to call him in, treat him, and let him right back out most of the time. After about a week of this, you should have solved your problem.

Going forward, when you call him in, play with her. Make it really fun. Tug or wrestle or chase your pup around in the house. While you are playing that game, do a recall for treats, then start the game again. It'll work. Just keep it fun. And make a recall indoors not predictive of the fun all ending.
 

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How do I make coming inside seem fun to him then?
Go out with 20 treats in your pocket - get him to come to you - give a treat (or throw a ball or whatever) and release him to play. After you have done this 20 times, he's likely to think that his odds are better that he's going to get a cookie and more play time than lose his freedom. I never waste my important recall cue unless I'm pretty darned certain the dog is coming. Otherwise I am telling him he has a choice.
 

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Is this why, with an acreage and dog door and lots of outside time and always a pack of three or more, I have such trouble training recall with mine? Often mine aren't even somewhat reliable for a few years . . . I wait for maturity to help.

If that is the case what is the proposal for those of us that spend lots of time outside with pups from the very beginning? This might sound silly but I've never considered doing much training inside . . . mostly all outside work here.

Not to high-jack the thread as I think the recommendations will help the OP as well.

SOB
Make sure that you have control of the situation before you say that word. And, yes, I'd do specific training to get a reliable recall, and that probably starts in a low distraction (indoor) environment, with one dog at a time.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
This is good advice and I am happy that we found out what it was (probably, I'll find out in a few weeks or so?). I will work on him with this using the methods suggested and update you. Maybe even make a video lol.

Thank you all for helping me find out the problem and help me find a solution.
 
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