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Sarah

Huskies Off Lead

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I voted no for Marley as we tried him in an enclosed field and he still only came back when he chose too! As soon as he knew it was time to go he played the "I will get as close to you as I can but just out of reach and then when you make a move I will sprint off" game. Great fun for him! He now stays on the 100ft lead in there!

Buddy's recall however in the field is good, he will come back if I shake the treat pot and sometimes won't leave my side if he wants more!

I wouldn't trust either of them off lead in the fields where we walk. We have tried it and it has not been a pleasurable experience. Their prey drives are high, especially Marley, he is constantly on the hunt when we walk for anything from a fly to a deer!! Marley has no road sense at all and it worried me that one day we might lose him. I do miss watching the enjoyment on his face though(tongue out to the side and ears back) as he used to sprint past me but I will sacrifice that for their safety.

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Lol sorry

He normally gets called a husky x gsd coz no one as ever heard of a utonagan.

Ha Ha, We have the same prob, 1 husky and 2 utonagan.."a uta whata gan..? " They go off lead,husky goes off at beach only,although my last boy could go off a certain times in certain places but he was a complete one off:(

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I only let Kato off in an enclosed area. I have a 60ft lead for him when out in the fields, I usually walk him with my Dads German Sheperd so she often helps by keeping his attention as well. We are working on his recall now we have the 60ft lead and it's coming along nicely, even IF he becomes accomplished at recall I stll won't be letting him off the lead. His prey drive is quite high, when on his long lead you can see him hunting and patrolling the field margins looking for rabbits.... we'll see how it goes :)

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I voted no for Marley as we tried him in an enclosed field and he still only came back when he chose too! .

Not picking on this post specifically because a few people have said similar things, but just using it as an example - IMO the above is the worst thing you can do to your dog's recall! My youngest dog has an excellent recall, you couldn't get more reliable but if I'd simply started by letting her off leash to "try" her or "see how she goes" then there is no way her recall would have gotten as reliable as it is. Recalls need to be trained, and proofed before they are reliable. Don't let your dog off ANYWHERE unless you are sure they will be able to come when you call them... or if you are setting them up so you can proof them.

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From day 1 ive had her off the lead. Only started using it 3days ago (still a young pup almost 4 months old) have out in the fields beside me. If she wanted to take off 1 direction I would just go the other or hide in the long grass & whistle. She only goes about 50 yrs from me now. I’m sure that will change when something catches her attention, as she grows .

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Not picking on this post specifically because a few people have said similar things, but just using it as an example - IMO the above is the worst thing you can do to your dog's recall! My youngest dog has an excellent recall, you couldn't get more reliable but if I'd simply started by letting her off leash to "try" her or "see how she goes" then there is no way her recall would have gotten as reliable as it is. Recalls need to be trained, and proofed before they are reliable. Don't let your dog off ANYWHERE unless you are sure they will be able to come when you call them... or if you are setting them up so you can proof them.

well Bec its in an enclosed dog field o_O

if alot of us didnt let our Huskies off the lead there, then ALOT of huskies would NEVER be allowed off the lead ^_^

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well Bec its in an enclosed dog field :confused:

if alot of us didnt let our Huskies off the lead there, then ALOT of huskies would NEVER be allowed off the lead ^_^

Depends on how much you care about having a reliable recall really... I wouldn't let my dogs off in an enclosed area if I knew their recall wasn't reliable.

What if someone leaves the gate open?

What if they get out?

What if I need to recall them in an emergency?

Every time you call your dog and they ignore you your recall command becomes less reliable.

ETA: Anyway, my point was that recalls aren't something that are in built into your dog or something you just let your dog off to 'see what happens' or 'see if they come back'. It's not something that happens without a lot of work on your behalf.

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Meh, I let Aries off in most parks as long as they look safe enough, he never really goes running off anywhere. Though he's not allowed off in Hyde Park anymore as he's terrorized the swans and ducks enough for now :P

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agree with u bec - specially if a dog aggressive dog comes in - stayed onlead n ur dog ran over to them n got hurt - it wouldnt be the dogs fault as he should have come back when u called him (nt saying ur dog and you as in YOUR dog and YOU - i mean it as a generalisation) - im sure u know what i mean

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Yep definitely Nix - it's one of the most important things we could teach our dogs - if not the most important thing, IMO.

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Depends on how much you care about having a reliable recall really... I wouldn't let my dogs off in an enclosed area if I knew their recall wasn't reliable.

What if someone leaves the gate open?

What if they get out?

What if I need to recall them in an emergency?

Every time you call your dog and they ignore you your recall command becomes less reliable.

ETA: Anyway, my point was that recalls aren't something that are in built into your dog or something you just let your dog off to 'see what happens' or 'see if they come back'. It's not something that happens without a lot of work on your behalf.

I have done a lot of work on recall with Marley on lead, the next sensible step IMO is too try him in an enclosed field, he would have to be tried off lead at some point and that was the safer option. I will continue to work with him but I am convinced even with the best trainer in the world, Marley will only come back if he chooses to. Although the breed have similar traits, huskies have different personalities and I know my dog! Granted, his recall will improve with practise (and it has improved) but I could never rely on it 100%. I have no need to worry about gates being left open etc. It is a private field that only we are allowed to use. I have walked all round the perimeter and blocked all possible exits so I am sure it is safe. I agree with James. Marley and Buddy get time to chase and run and play. As I said, Marley is on a 100ft lead! Buddy isn't because he has good recall. I have accepted that I will never be allowed to let Marley or Buddy off lead. We knew that was a possibility before we got a husky.

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I have done a lot of work on recall with Marley on lead, the next sensible step IMO is too try him in an enclosed field, he would have to be tried off lead at some point and that was the safer option.

On lead though, how reliable was his recall? 80%? 90%? 100%?

I would have trained it on a long line and proofed it until it was 100% reliable and then I would have started off leash work in a controlled environment.

Not having a go at you - but explaining it for others who may be reading and are thinking of "trying" their dogs off leash to see how they go.

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RICO isn't let off lead now but used to be because we could easily distract him and other dogs were not so bothered about him, but now he is a huge big boy at only 10 months he is so cocky that he is only allowed to run on his 100ft lead.. We don't have any enclosed areas near us just a few good open feilds .. :-)

X Angie & Rico X

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Bec and I don't always agree and have some great discussions. Here I agree with her 100% and it is something I need to follow.

Apart from a couple of times when I've dropped the lead Harley has never been disconnected from me out and about...and will remain that way unless in a controlled secure environment.

The unpredictability was highlighted today as we were canicrossing the 300m to the military training grounds for our morning run. Harley is incredibly good during canicross and was in full focus mode - yet in an instant he saw a cat on the other side of the road and darted onto it. Luckily I am alert and have fast reactions and have trained myself for such an event, and I threw myself in the other direction as I grabbed the line and pulled - just stopping him from being hit by a Transit van.

So when working 100% focused I can't trust him to not be distracted. Will I therefore let him off lead at any time I can't guarantee his safety? Nope! And when you love something, guaranteeing safety is a tall task...I'm following Bec's advice...

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Bec and I don't always agree and have some great discussions. Here I agree with her 100% and it is something I need to follow.

Apart from a couple of times when I've dropped the lead Harley has never been disconnected from me out and about...and will remain that way unless in a controlled secure environment.

The unpredictability was highlighted today as we were canicrossing the 300m to the military training grounds for our morning run. Harley is incredibly good during canicross and was in full focus mode - yet in an instant he saw a cat on the other side of the road and darted onto it. Luckily I am alert and have fast reactions and have trained myself for such an event, and I threw myself in the other direction as I grabbed the line and pulled - just stopping him from being hit by a Transit van.

So when working 100% focused I can't trust him to not be distracted. Will I therefore let him off lead at any time I can't guarantee his safety? Nope! And when you love something, guaranteeing safety is a tall task...I'm following Bec's advice...

Smiler

Ok, But at what point do we become over-protective of our dogs? I think there comes a point where the reward outweighs the low risk, I mean hundreds of thousands of people die in car accidents each year, do we stop driving? no. Do we still take our Kids in the car? yes.

the incident we heard about today is a freak accident and could have easily happened even if Link was on the lead. Dog parks are one of the safest places to let Huskies off the lead, there is a risk an aggressive dog will come in the park, but usually the owners are smart enought to keep their dog muzzled or leashed, even if they don't, you keep a close eye on the dog, stay close and ready, Dogs are smart enough to know that an aggressive dog, does not want to play and hence will leave it alone.

Kita's recall is amazing, her obediance is fantastic! (I have a pic of her where my front door is wide open, I have told her to wait, and she just sat there at the door, I even Left the room and she stayed :D, it was controlled btw and i live in a close) but if it wasn't I will admit that I would still go to the dog park and let her off-lead, I like I said in another thread, I dnt want to stop her doing things she loves due to a "chance" something could go wrong.

Life is full of risks, we take them every single day, without thinking twice, but when it comes to our dogs, something we get over concerned and think of every single bad possibilty.

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Ok, But at what point do we become over-protective of our dogs? I think there comes a point where the reward outweighs the low risk, I mean hundreds of thousands of people die in car accidents each year, do we stop driving? no. Do we still take our Kids in the car? yes.

If you are happy to accept that your dog doesn't have a reliable recall (talking generally here not you specifically) then that is your risk to take.

I don't accept anything less than 100% and that's the way I train. As a result I have dog who does have an excellent reliable recall.

Would I let my dogs off leash in an open area - even if it was fenced - if they weren't reliable off leash? No. So, I train a reliable recall so I can let my dogs off leash.

the incident we heard about today is a freak accident and could have easily happened even if Link was on the lead. Dog parks are one of the safest places to let Huskies off the lead, there is a risk an aggressive dog will come in the park, but usually the owners are smart enought to keep their dog muzzled or leashed, even if they don't, you keep a close eye on the dog, stay close and ready, Dogs are smart enough to know that an aggressive dog, does not want to play and hence will leave it alone.

The incident would not have happened if the dog was under effective control, that is a fact. I'm not saying anything against Link or Link's owner there just stating the truth.

Not all dogs are "smart" enough to tell a dog is DA, the number of dogs who have rushed up to my DA dog is testament to this.

Kita's recall is amazing, her obediance is fantastic! (I have a pic of her where my front door is wide open, I have told her to wait, and she just sat there at the door, I even Left the room and she stayed :D, it was controlled btw and i live in a close) but if it wasn't I will admit that I would still go to the dog park and let her off-lead, I like I said in another thread, I dnt want to stop her doing things she loves due to a "chance" something could go wrong.

Life is full of risks, we take them every single day, without thinking twice, but when it comes to our dogs, something we get over concerned and think of every single bad possibilty.

Once again James - it is about weighing up the risk and deciding what you are and aren't comfortable taking. My dog was off leash the entire time I was on my run tonight at our local sports oval, it's not fenced at all but I know she is reliable and is always under effective control so I don't have any concern in letting her off leash. I can bet you that many people on this forum wouldn't take the same "risk" with their dogs. Just as I won't take the risk associated with going to a dog park. It's not about my dogs because I know I can control them but the fact I can't control the dozens of other dogs around us.

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If you are happy to accept that your dog doesn't have a reliable recall (talking generally here not you specifically) then that is your risk to take.

I don't accept anything less than 100% and that's the way I train. As a result I have dog who does have an excellent reliable recall.

Would I let my dogs off leash in an open area - even if it was fenced - if they weren't reliable off leash? No. So, I train a reliable recall so I can let my dogs off leash.

The incident would not have happened if the dog was under effective control, that is a fact. I'm not saying anything against Link or Link's owner there just stating the truth.

Not all dogs are "smart" enough to tell a dog is DA, the number of dogs who have rushed up to my DA dog is testament to this.

Once again James - it is about weighing up the risk and deciding what you are and aren't comfortable taking. My dog was off leash the entire time I was on my run tonight at our local sports oval, it's not fenced at all but I know she is reliable and is always under effective control so I don't have any concern in letting her off leash. I can bet you that many people on this forum wouldn't take the same "risk" with their dogs. Just as I won't take the risk associated with going to a dog park. It's not about my dogs because I know I can control them but the fact I can't control the dozens of other dogs around us.

We do indeed differ on opinions and personality alot I think Bec ^_^, you like to be control of situations, Do you get anxious if your not? my ex was the same, she HATED not being in control, she had to control everything and got mad at people if they didn't do as she said because she then lost control.. sorry im digressing, My point is I don't feel the need to be in control, I like to let things flow, to me what happens happens (within reason ofc :P)

I'm lucky that Kita has what I would consider 100% reliable recall, like I stated in another thread, mid play her and her best friend saw a rabbit, her best mate bolted, she did not, and thus entirely trust worth off lead, it most circumstances, however like you say I cannot control the other dogs in the park, but thats something I happily live with and I can and will physically remove a dog I deem to be a danger to any of the other dogs in the park.

It may be worth ( i don't know if you have before) creating a thread of how you have and do train reliable recall into your dogs, specifically your husky, it would be valuable information for many people here.

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At the dog parks i go to, about 90% of the dogs there ignore their owners in the park. Mine included. If i didn't take them (and I'm sure their are many others on the site) to the park they would never get the opportunity to run around and play with other dogs and so that is the risk I take.

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We do indeed differ on opinions and personality alot I think Bec ^_^, you like to be control of situations, Do you get anxious if your not? my ex was the same, she HATED not being in control, she had to control everything and got mad at people if they didn't do as she said because she then lost control.. sorry im digressing, My point is I don't feel the need to be in control, I like to let things flow, to me what happens happens (within reason ofc :P)

No. I'm not at all like your ex. But when it comes to setting my dogs up for success, of course I am going to control the parameters of our training sessions to the best of my abilities.

I'm lucky that Kita has what I would consider 100% reliable recall, like I stated in another thread, mid play her and her best friend saw a rabbit, her best mate bolted, she did not, and thus entirely trust worth off lead, it most circumstances, however like you say I cannot control the other dogs in the park, but thats something I happily live with and I can and will physically remove a dog I deem to be a danger to any of the other dogs in the park.

James, when it comes down to it - I really don't care if you take your dog to the dog park and I mean that in the nicest way possible. I don't like dog parks and I always advise caution and common sense to anyone who feels they MUST use them, but I choose not to use them for myself. If you want to - go for it! I don't see the point or benefit to them or see what my dogs would get out of going to a small fenced area with dozens of other dogs running loose together, that they can't get from any of the other things we do. I can guarantee you that my dogs get out more and do more than the average dog and probably most of the dogs on this forum. But going dog parks are not or never will be one of the things I do with my dogs - that's my choice and I'd appreciate it if you'd respect it rather than banging on about me "needing to be in control of all situations" or "being over-protective". And I DO mean that in the nicest way possible :)

It may be worth ( i don't know if you have before) creating a thread of how you have and do train reliable recall into your dogs, specifically your husky, it would be valuable information for many people here.

I don't know if I'll ever consider Micha (my husky) to have a 100% recall because of his history of aggression - not that I don't trust him but I don't trust other dogs so I am wary of when and where I let him off leash. His recall is very good though.

But my youngest dog (a beagle who is another breed that's recommended not to be let off leash and has honestly been far harder to train than my husky!) has a great recall and she's very very reliable off leash. I might start a thread about it, if it wouldn't be too controversial ;) I don't like to do 'how to' training over the internet though because what works for my dogs will not work for every dog.

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I agree with some opinions here but also with others, I wouldn't dream of letting Indie off the lead anywhere that wasn't enclosed and safe, She's got 80% reliabilty for recall I would say but if she sees a squirrel, rabbit or cat it would instantly drop to 0% reliability, she loves small furries way too much. Not worth the risk to be honest!

However I did vote for the in general parks and woods as I had been discussing with Nix a few days ago, I let Oisin off lead for the first time in my local woodland walk as he has proved to me in an enclosed feild on several occasions that he can be trusted. he has low prey drive and completely ignores other animals, he's got a bit of SA aswell so he is scared of losing sight of me and Indie. He trotted on ahead a short way, no more than 30 yards but never out of sight and he turned to make sure I was still there, if I turned around and walked away, he instantly turned to catch up with me in that direction. I was so proud of my boy! He totally ignored other dogs walking past and people too, everytime I called his name he turned and ran straight back to me for a cuddle.

I don't think I could let him off just anywhere though, I don't think I would risk the beach or anywhere too close to a road, I trust him but my fear of him getting hurt would kick in and stop me letting him off in those places.

I think it's up to the individual to assess the risks and decide if it is safe enough to let their dog off, no matter what the breed.

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At the dog parks i go to, about 90% of the dogs there ignore their owners in the park. Mine included. If i didn't take them (and I'm sure their are many others on the site) to the park they would never get the opportunity to run around and play with other dogs and so that is the risk I take.

Just because 90% of owners have dogs that ignore them at the dog park doesn't make it right though!

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