Check in from a distance




If you dream of being able to let your dog off lead with the freedom to explore, one exercise you will want to practice is getting your dog to check in with you regularly from a distance. This will help to keep them safe, enable you to recall them to you when needed or cue them to do other behaviours while they are off lead.

Walks are the most enjoyable when your dog is looking out for you as much as you are looking out for them.

To start with you will practice this on a long line to keep your dog safe while they are learning. Every time they look at you, mark and reward them close to you. You can use treats, play with toys or other rewards in the environment like sniffing and exploring interesting areas. Then return to letting them explore the environment.

The more you reward your dog for checking in, the more they will offer it.

In time you can reward your dog by releasing them to continue enjoying the environment, without necessarily coming back to you first.

Practicing this in lots of different situations and around all sorts of distractions will set your dog up for success when you are ready to let them off lead in the future

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