There’s nothing better than watching (well-behaved) dogs enjoy the outdoors off lead with the freedom to run and investigate their surroundings without unnecessary physical restriction. Of course, for dogs and dog owners to enjoy the full benefits of off-leash outings, they need to first have the confidence that when necessary, the dog will return on command.
With this ultimate outdoor freedom in mind, today’s topic is ‘unleashed’ and features a selection of the best products to assist with recall training, a quick and easy collar/leash in-one, tempting treats and some fun toys for interactive play and retrieval.
Easy Come, Easy Go. The Zee.Dog Slip Leash
The Slip Leash by Zee.Dog is a great collar and leash in-one for dogs that like to play off-leash at the park, beach, hiking trail… wherever! This slip leash is strong and durable and the simple design makes it a breeze to put on / take off. Fully adjustable, one size fits all.
Light-weight and compact to carry, the Zee.Dog Slip Leash will give you the confidence of knowing that your dog can be brought quickly under control without having to fumble about.
Dish out the Treats!
Positive reinforcement is essential to establishing good recall with your dog. Positive reinforcement can be food rewards, high praise, or a short stint of play, perhaps a game of tug with a favourite toy.
Obviously, when training with food, the best results are always achieved when highly desirable ‘treats’ are used rather than something that resembles an everyday dog biscuit or kibble.
My go-to training treats are always alluring in their aroma, small and soft enough for the dog to consume quickly because you don’t want to lose momentum (and have to wait about while your dog gnaws through a chicken jerky!)
There are lots of treats on the market which are brilliant for training, and like us, all dogs are individual, so the success of any treat will depend somewhat on the dog. Here are my recommendations…
These treats are 100% natural, grain-free and made with limited ingredients. High-five!
- Plato ‘Small Bites’ Organic Chicken (also available in Duck and Salmon)
- Plato ‘Hundur’s Crunch’ Jerky Minis
- Emerald Pet ‘Little Chewzzies’ Chicken (also available in Turkey-Duck, Salmon and Peanut Butter)
- Nutreats Free Range Venison
- Plato ‘Thinkers’ available in Chicken, Duck and Salmon
- Zeal ‘Wild Caught’ Hoki Fish Cubes
The Reward of Play!
For some dogs, the reward of play is just as satisfying as the prospect of a tasty morsel. Here’s a selection of great toys for playful pooches, these tug-style toys are perfect for reinforcing ‘good dog’ behavior.
- GiGwi ‘Push To Mute’ Owl. Your choice of squeak option or quite mode
- Katie’s Bumpers Tug Toys. Made in the USA from industrial fire hose
- Happy Tails ‘Loonies’ Butterfly. Crinkle wings and reinforced with Chew Armour
- GiGwi ‘Flying Tug’. Satisfy your dogs desire chase, tug and chew
- Alien Flex ‘Capsule and Planet’ (below). Durable rope and natural rubber
Key point: When working on recall with your dog, it doesn’t matter how many times you issue the command, the moment they return, make it a true ‘woo-hoo’ moment. Dish out the treats or launch into a game of play.