The long line can ensure effective recall training as it stops dogs from just ignoring us and having fun with their environment. This devalues cues (makes them mean less for your dog) and reduces responsiveness over time.
It also allows us to give our dogs more freedom before their recall is solid, whilst still being safe!
If using for recall you should use is 100% of the time. If your dog learns that when there is no lead they can run away then you won’t be making progress with training!
Once you’re pretty confident your dog is happy to come close to you try to trail the line on the floor. This means not holding on to it and giving your dog freedom to act as if they are off lead.
If you need to have your dog back under control and their recall didn’t work pick up the line. This might be really near you or a little walk away. Try to pick up on a diagonal i.e. don’t try to walk straight up to you dog, instead aim towards the far end of the line away from your dog.
Once you’ve picked up your line if your dog isn’t showing any interest in coming back to you leave your dog where they are and go to them instead. You can reel the line in so that they can’t get further away from you but any tugging or pulling on the line to try to get them to come to you at this point is likely to be uncomfortable and worsen their recall over time.
Always follow the general recall rules especially to never punish your dog for returning to you (we recommend never being aversive to your dog for what ever they do!) as this makes them less likely to come back in future.
Keep practising and seek professional help if your dog’s recall is not at a safe standard for you.