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We occasionally take a jeep or ATV onto back country trails where there is no traffic. Fido the dog gets to run. He loves it. He always wants to run in front, which is OK as he is in sight and you know where he is. The problem is that he seems to have zero perception to the danger of getting run over. He will stop on a dime to pick up a stick, cut in front of the wheels from one side to the other, etc etc. Honking or yelling 'Get out of the way' is counterproductive as he just stops, turns and stares at you inches in front of the truck What's wrong Lets Go!.

Any practical ideas?
 

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I wouldn't let him run around in front of a jeep or any other motor vehicle, but that's just me. It sounds extremely dangerous to both the drivers/passengers of the jeep and to the dog.
 

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Vets often see the same dog(s) hit on several occassions...they don't learn even after being run over and severely injured multiple times....why do you think it can be trained? It makes more practical sense to just keep the dog safe.
 

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Get a bike rack and and bike the dog when you get in country or you could get a backup dog as you may need one. Letting dog cruise in front is an accident looking for a place to happen.
 

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There is traffic. Your Jeep or ATV. The dog doesn't understand that your Jeep (or ATV) can't stop on a dime like he can and he trusts you implicitly.

It's my un-doggy-educated opinion that you're putting your dog in a dangerous situation. Keep the dog in the Jeep when you go four wheeling and let him out on breaks. If you go with the ATV, leave him at home.

Or, perhaps, park the Jeep and run the trails with him until you tire him out and then put him in the back. After watching my dog do laps in the backyard, I figured he needed more exercise. So now, I take him to the trails and run with him. He gets to run and sniff as far as my 30' leader will allow and my fat ass gets some exercise, too.
 

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I was thinking about the OP while I was working out in the yard today. I pondered how I might train my dog to hang out with me while I worked. He looked so forlorn peering out at me from behind those sliding glass doors.

I ultimately decided that nothing I could do would ever make it a good idea to have my RETRIEVER hang out with me, while I threw big STICKS into the diesel powered WOOD CHIPPER. Certain situations just don't allow for a 2nd training failure.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I ultimately decided that nothing I could do would ever make it a good idea to have my RETRIEVER hang out with me, while I threw big STICKS into the diesel powered WOOD CHIPPER.
LOL, can't disagree with you there; it brings up a pretty disturbing image.

But I've got 5 lectures and no suggestions. For goodness sakes, I'm not going to run over my dog, I have something called a "brake". And you don't drive very fast down these sort of trails, at least I don't. But it would be more fun if he would learn to respect the front end of the vehicle a little more.

How do people on a farm keep their dogs from running under the wheels of a tractor ?
 

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But I've got 5 lectures and no suggestions. For goodness sakes, I'm not going to run over my dog, I have something called a "brake". And you don't drive very fast down these sort of trails, at least I don't. But it would be more fun if he would learn to respect the front end of the vehicle a little more.
Perhaps some time teaching him that the horn means move to the side of the vehicle?

Blow the horn while parked (during teaching the chain) and then get him to come to the side for a reward. Perhaps keeping the pattern up will get to where the horn predicts the call to the side of the vehicle so then he'll go to the side on the sound of the horn alone. It's like the ATV is giving the cue to get the heck out of the way.

I don't have experience with this so I can't say it would "certainly" work, but it's an idea I got.
 

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I had dogs on the farm for YEARS and they would range ahead while I ran the tractor. I could request a "heel" and they would then walk at my left side and not be in front. Problem was it wasn't much fun for the dog.. tho dying because of the behavior you describe (running in front and stopping etc.) was decidedly LESS fun.

The dogs looked at the tractor much the same as they did a horse that would not bite or strike at them (horses play too). They resected the horse a lot more than the tractor.

Dogs have NO respect for motorized equipment and if you are trying to teach a dog to respect such a thing you will probably go thru a lot of dogs.
 

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How do people on a farm keep their dogs from running under the wheels of a tractor ?
Actually farm accidents are common place and many farms have dogs for short times before replacing them due to injuries or death. Not all farms are like that, but many are. Good luck to you with your training.
 

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I hope I wasn't included in the lecture group, Inga's correct some farmers go through a lot of dogs and some have lost kids in farm accidents. I thought I was right on with my backup dog answer. I don't know of anybody who has trained their dog to run in front of their vehicles. Doesn't mean it hasn't been done I just never saw it. The last place I want a dog that's not ever going to be smarter than a 3 yr old child, is running in front of my truck/vehicle etc. That's just me.
 

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Mesquite stays away from cars because they're loud and loud things are scary. I didn't teach her that. Thankfully, she just came that way. Unfortunately, she still hasn't figured out that she needs to look both ways before crossing the street.

The only way I could think of training your dog to stay away from your vehicle would be to teach your dog that the vehicle is a scary thing, but I can't think of any particularly humane ways to do that.

I guess I can't really put myself in your shoes - when Mesquite and I go backcountry, she's either hiking with her backpack or she's pulling me in her canicross harness. If you like doing fun trail work with your dogs, you could try bikejoring. It's a heck of a lot of fun!
 

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BTW because my dog did heel from the tractor seat, I never lost a dog to a tractor. My dogs also learned directional hand signals.. so I could whistle, they would look and I directed them to move somewhere else.

I farmed 400 acres for 20 years full time. Dogs lived long lives on my farm.. as did the cats... and many of the cows... Somedays I thought I was running a geriatric animal clinic and not a farm.
 

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BTW because my dog did heel from the tractor seat, I never lost a dog to a tractor. My dogs also learned directional hand signals.. so I could whistle, they would look and I directed them to move somewhere else.

I farmed 400 acres for 20 years full time. Dogs lived long lives on my farm.. as did the cats... and many of the cows... Somedays I thought I was running a geriatric animal clinic and not a farm.
Yes a dog heeling on side of tractor etc is a doable program and I'm sure there are dogs herding sheep with an ATV driven owner. That is totally different than a dog just running loose with nothing but sillyness in their heads.
 

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why don't you get an ATV dog box? They do make them. My dad makes dog boxes, AC boxes, spay/neuter trailers and they also do ATV boxes for hunters. Gun dog/field people come from all over the country to get boxes done by them, so it is doable.

All the farm dogs I know either learned how to stay away from the tractor/golf cart etc, or they didn't. Some did and some never could get the hang of it. Me, I'd safely contain my dog.
 

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why don't you get an ATV dog box? They do make them. My dad makes dog boxes, AC boxes, spay/neuter trailers and they also do ATV boxes for hunters. Gun dog/field people come from all over the country to get boxes done by them, so it is doable.

All the farm dogs I know either learned how to stay away from the tractor/golf cart etc, or they didn't. Some did and some never could get the hang of it. Me, I'd safely contain my dog.
I think he's looking at the exercise etc it gives the dog.(not sure though)
 

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We occasionally take a jeep or ATV onto back country trails where there is no traffic. Fido the dog gets to run. He loves it. He always wants to run in front, which is OK as he is in sight and you know where he is. The problem is that he seems to have zero perception to the danger of getting run over. He will stop on a dime to pick up a stick, cut in front of the wheels from one side to the other, etc etc. Honking or yelling 'Get out of the way' is counterproductive as he just stops, turns and stares at you inches in front of the truck What's wrong Lets Go!.

Any practical ideas?
Since so many of your posts put you squarely in the "three stooges" school of dog training.....

It's obvious that your dog is trying to dominate you! You must alpha roll him immediately. Then strap the zap collar on and fry him crispy whenever he tries to pull a disrespectful stunt like that in the future!

Seriously, people have been training carriage (coach) dogs to run behind the carriage for hundreds of years, and this is not completely a lost art. How do they do it? The only way you ever train any desired behavior: by making it more rewarding to stay in the desired position relative to the vehicle than it is to pursue other behaviors.

Here's one story: CARRIAGE DOGS, I'm sure you can find others.


Of course, a big risk here is that you are intentionally creating a car chaser. So it will be very necessary to teach the dog when it is appropriate when it is inappropriate to follow the coach.
 
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