Why Doesn’t Your German Shepherd Respond to Come Here

German shepherds are really smart folks. They are well known for their superior intelligence. Even so, there are many cases in which the dog completely ignores the person calling him. The “come” command is a difficult command because it requires your dog to shift his focus to you, and then comply with your command.

In essence, it is a command that competes for the German shepherd’s attention and whenever there are serious distractions it will probably not work. In addition, every time you say the command and he doesn’t comply and there are no repercussions you’re reinforcing that his coming to you is optional.

First let’s take a look at why your dog may completely ignore you and then we’ll take a look at a cool way to teach him to come to you consistently regardless of the situation.

Why won’t your German shepherd respond to “come”?

There are several reasons for this, the most common of which is not enough training. People often get impatient and go from a completely distraction free environment to the outside world and then they wonder why he won’t respond.

You need to understand that, for a dog, it is a big deal to ignore what his nose and eyes are telling him and listen specifically to you. After all, who are you anyway? So after he gets the idea of the command, start with mild distractions and then work your way up.

On the same chain of thought, don’t try to convince him to come to you when he’s distracted, if you know he’s not prepared to do it. Training your German shepherd takes time and patience, but the breed is very smart, so don’t give up.

Finally, the biggest mistake dog owners make is forgetting to praise the dog when he does come to you. Lack of reward means there is no reason for your dog to come to you. Either use a treat (not recommended) or lots and lots of praise.

Now that you know why he might not be responding to your command, let’s look at a nice way to teach your German shepherd to “come”

German Shepherd DogThe best way to teach him is to disguise it as a game. You’re never going to actually train him, you’re going to teach him to love coming to you. Grab a couple of friends, give them a handful of treats and have them sit in different rooms.

Now you are going to play the “where are you?” game. Start calling him to you in turns and give him a treat every time he finds the correct one of you. Pretty soon he’ll catch on that whenever he comes to the right person he is going get a treat and lots of praise.

This is a great game to play with your kids, and it’s an excellent method to train your dog to consistently listen to you regardless of distractions. The whole point of training is to reinforce positive behavior, not punish negative behavior.

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