How To Stop Your Jack Russell From Running Away

Published: 06th April 2011
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Why does my dog keep running off?





It may not be nice to see your Jack Russell running away from you, but the simple fact is that itís in his genes. For generations, Jacks served hunters by running off into the distance, marking where fallen prey landed, so years of breeding has made this running instinctual. This predisposition, combined with his incredibly active and athletic nature, means that heíll have no qualms about running miles ahead of you, and while itís nice to give your dog the chance to exercise it isnít so good when he doesnít like to come back.





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How to stop your Jack Russell running away





Keep your dog from running away by providing your Jack with thorough obedience training. You need to teach your dog the proper commands and make sure he knows youíre the leader of the pack, and while it can be difficult for you to change the innate desire to run, it can be done Ė all it takes is a little patience and an understanding of what makes your dog tick.





Such training is utterly essential. While anyone can initial this training through dedication and frequent praise of your pet, the Jack Russell tends to benefit from the help of a professional. Itís never too early to begin obedience training, so take your dog to puppy training classes where youíll be exposed to other owners facing similar challenges and you can all start this process together.





In addition to classes, training techniques must also be applied at home. Of these exercises, one of the most important is encouraging your dog to come at your command by rewarding his efforts. The commands "sit," "stay," and "come" are the most important and you can practice them all at once by instructing him to sit, offering a treat when he does, slowly backing away telling him to "stay," and then, after a moment, calling him to "come". After your dog follows these commands, immediately reward him with a treat. Soon your Jack will know that obeying your commands will result in reward, enforcing obedience and likely prevent him from running away.





More Training Secrets





When training your Jack Russell, be mindful of the fact that they can only concentrate for short periods of time. Short and frequent training sessions will yield the best results and reduce boredom for your dog





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Also, try not to chase your Jack if he begins to run away from you. Chasing after him will only make him think the two of you are playing a game, reinforcing this bad habit, so be sure not to reward your dog by chasing him. You may wonder how youíre actually going to catch your dog when he runs off Ė the simple answer is to not give him the chance to do so. Simply donít let him off his leash until he has been properly trained and your dog wonít leave your side.





Itís also critically important that you donít scold your dog if he runs off. Any reprimand will seem to be the result of returning rather than fleeing, sending the wrong message and enforcing the wrong behavior. Keep working on his training by practicing commands and reasserting yourself as the leader of your pack and soon your Jack will know not to run off.





Because these dogs were bred to run for so long, owners today still experience their Jack Russells running away occassionally. Their energy and lust for chasing means that it could be difficult to correct, but if you spend the time to train him youíll soon be able to take charge of your dog so heís obedient and, above all, safe.





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