Dogs sometimes have a mind of their own, regardless of how well-trained they may be. This could prove dangerous if your dog is the type to run off of your property. By doing this, they could potentially get hit by a car or attacked by a wild animal.
There’s a number of reasons why dogs do this. It could simply be boredom. Or, they might be lonely or scared of something. Regardless of what their reasons may be, it’s a habit you must help them break. Here are some of the best ways to keep your dog from running off:
1. Invest in a Fence Containment System
This is definitely the most secure measure you can take to keep your dog safe, and many dog owners attest to the effectiveness of these electric fences. Electric dog fences are underground wire fences that create an electric boundary where you don’t want your dogs to go. It is connected to a collar they wear.
Invisible fences are so great because they allow your dog to have freedom without the risk of them being injured. There’s a lot of speculation about whether or not the shocks are painful to dogs. The collars create more of a surprise factor rather than a painful shock. This is enough for the dog to unlearn their habit of running off.
2. Minimize Triggers
A lot of the time, dogs run off because they are scared or excited about something, like a squirrel or rabbit. In order to prevent your dog running off to chase whatever it is they are interested in, spend some time training them to ignore these triggers.
You can do this by training them using one of their triggers. Obviously, you won’t be using a live squirrel or rabbit, but you can use a favorite toy or a treat. Only reward them with the treat once they ignore the object of interest for a few seconds.
As they progress, lengthen the amount of time that you make them wait for. Eventually, they will associate these triggers with patience and learn not to run off.
3. Don’t Get Angry
It can be frustrating when your dog runs off, especially if you’ve been chasing after them for a while. If you eventually get your dog to come back to you, don’t take the opportunity to reprimand them. If you first treat them kindly to lure them your way and then meet them with anger, they will learn not to trust you.
If your dog is distrustful of you, they will be more prone to run off. Instead, make them feel safe and secure near you so they won’t be interested in running off.
4. Explore with Your Dog
Another reason that dogs try to run away is because they are curious about their surroundings. This behavior is extremely normal and instead of reprimanding them for being curious, you should encourage it.
Explore your surroundings with them daily so they can appease that curiosity. If necessary, keep them on a leash. Once they’ve seen what’s beyond your property, they probably won’t be so curious anymore.
5. Play Frequently
If your dog is bored and doesn’t receive a lot of play time, they’ll probably have a lot of energy. They could use this energy to run off and find a source of excitement. Make sure you play with your dog a lot so they don’t have extra energy to spend. This is not only healthy for your dog, but it will keep them safe.