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Weekend Fun: Recall Training and Playing with Hugo…

I haven’t had as busy a weekend as last week but I still did a lot of stuff!

Honey+Hugo-play3I met up with my friend, Hugo the Greyhound-Bullmastiff cross, again at Shore Rd Reserve…and we had a great time chasing each other and playing!

He is the bounciest dog I know! :)



Here is a short video clip of us playing…er, until Hugo decided to kiss the camera! :) (see how he bounces around and even leapt right over the top of me?!)

And although we didn’t manage to get out to the beach this weekend, my humans did take me to Waiatarua Wetlands Reserve – this is one of the BEST dog parks in Auckland: 20 hectares where we can safely roam off-leash and walk through open fields and native bush, with duck ponds and rabbit holes to explore…what more could a dog want?? :) (Sometimes, if I’m really lucky, there is even a dead rat to roll in!)


Doing a spot of rabbit-hunting...

My humans don’t like Waiatarua so much in winter ‘coz it gets really muddy and boggy…and I get filthy! But I LOVE it! (Us dogs must stay out of the water/wetland area ‘coz the birds are protected but otherwise we can go anywhere!)

Not only do you meet LOTS of dogs everytime but if you’re really lucky, you might even catch a rabbit (OK, I have to admit that I have never even seen a rabbit, much less catch one…but my sharper doggie friends assure me that there are bunnies in abundance and that they almost caught one several times!)

Sneaking a quick drink!

Sneaking a quick drink!

While we were there, my human, Hsin-Yi, also did some training with me.  When Paul takes me for walks, he likes to just cruise around and throw my ball – we just have an easy time “chillin’ out”…but when Hsin-Yi comes on the walks, she likes to always do a bit of training too. She says it keeps me on my toes and reminds me of my manners – and helps to keep my mind stimulated! :)

We practised a few new dance moves I’m learning (yup – we’re learning yet another new routine! Stay tuned – I’ll tell you more about it soon!) and we also practised my Wait command and long-distance Recall.

Here is a short video of me…what do you think? I think I look really good galloping up to Hsin-Yi! :)

By the way, in case you’re wondering why Hsin-Yi used “Wait” and not “Stay” – this is because she was planning to call me out of that position. When humans tell us to “Stay”, they should never then call us out of that position – they should ALWAYS come back to us to release us. This helps us to learn a really good, solid, reliable Stay. If they call us out of the Stay, we will always be quivering, waiting to be called and trying to break out of it to go to them. If they want to call us, then it is better to use “Wait” – which tells us to pause there and wait for our humans to tell us what to do next.

So I have learnt that when I hear “Stay”, I have to just stay there until my human returns, no matter how far she goes away (even out of sight!) and no matter what is going on around me. I know that she will always return to me. This makes me trust her and feel secure (This is why practising Stay is very good for doggies with Separation Anxiety!).

But when I hear “Wait”, I know that something exciting is going to happen soon and so I’m all attention, focused on my human, waiting to see what she’s going to tell me to do next! :)

Sitting nicely in my "Wait" command...

Sitting nicely in my "Wait" command...

Another thing you might have noticed is that Hsin-Yi didn’t actually use “Come” – although that is my recall command. This is because she used to play a game with me when I was a puppy – she would hide and then call “Hooooooooneeeeey” for me to come and find her. I loved this game and so even now, when we don’t play it anymore, whenever I hear my name being called like that, I still get really excited and run like mad to find Hsin-Yi.

Hiding and running away are great games your humans can play with you when you’re out on your walks, especially if you’re a bit – ahem – “deaf” when they call you to Come! :) It makes Recall training fun and if they do it often enough, it will become a sort of like ‘reflex’ whenever you hear them calling – you’ll get so excited that you’ll always go running to find them!

HY+Honey-talkAnd we doggies learn faster and remember better when our humans include a bit of training in our everyday routine (like during our walks) – so it’s not like a boring, long bootcamp session but a bit of fun & games doing stuff with our humans.

This way we get a bit of practice every day and we also learn to respond to our humans in different situations and with different distractions around.

And it doesn’t seem like such a chore for our humans because they don’t have to make time to specially train us – they can just squeeze in a few practices here and there!







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37 Responses to Weekend Fun: Recall Training and Playing with Hugo…

  1. Mango says:

    That Hugo sure is bouncy. Kind of reminds me of certain little Pee-Wee dogs. I love the way your hair stands up when you are playing. My Beautiful Raja used to do that too and she looked like a Ridgeback.

    Those long distance recalls are so hard. I guess I would need to learn not to follow momma around first, though. Thanks for explaining the difference between Stay and Wait.

    Momma says "free dog" when I can get up from my stays.


  2. Ana says:

    Hi Honey! Thank you for the training tips! We love the parks, so big and you can run free!
    Can we go too?
    Rufus and Indie

  3. Hi Honey, it seems you had great walks on the weekend! Your recall is superb!

    Our mum also differentiates 'Stay' and 'Wait', but we often get confused. We need a lot more training!

  4. Suzuki says:

    BOL Hugo likes to bounce!
    Scooby wanted to know if you will be attending the wedding with Chef?
    Big licks to you

  5. Ludo says:

    You has a great recall Honey! I loves to see you come galloping up and how your brow goes all wrinkly when you is thinking. hehe!

    What fun with your friend, I has no one to play with like that, except my friend Sally but I only sees her now and then.
    ~lickies, Ludo

  6. janice says:

    oh wow! the video of Hugo was fantastic! i bet Hugo is the bigest dog in town huh–until he stands by you! you look beautiful honey–you are so graceful and gentle when you play! i enjoy watching you–you look like a deer!

  7. Amber-Mae says:

    Hey Honey! You & your friend look sooo good together It looked like you both were dancing. My Hooman M also does that kind of recall with Faith because Faith seems to dislike the word " Come" & would drag herself towards Hooman M like she's been forced to. So my Hooman M usually calls her like, "Feeeeeiiiiiii-ahhhhhh!" And then she comes running happily. Hahaha!

    Solid Gold Dancer + Puppies

  8. hello honey its dennis the vizsla dog hay wow 20 hectares!!! that sownds like a lot!!! ill bet i cud almost git up to my top kroozing speed if i had that mutch spayse to run in ha ha ok bye

  9. Jackal says:

    Great post Honey! Very informative. I like how you explained between wait and stay. I'll have to start doing it that way. Very good idea. You have a really good recall and when you said distance you meant a looooong way! If I walked that far from Jackal he'd be off sniffing in no time lol. We have lots of work to do!

  10. Hahaha! Hugo is very jumpity! But it looks like you had a great time playing together. I hope the camera and Hugo's nose did not get hurted at the end. Bonk!

  11. You're sure having lots of fun with your friend Hugo! Oh, the life of a dog…sometimes, just sometimes I wish I had that much energy…but most of the time I am glad that I am a cat:)

  12. Lindsay says:

    I love the video of your long distance recalls! You look so happy! And my goodness, your mom can really get a LONG distance away from you!

  13. Jackal says:

    Yup, my Mom is very persistent when she actually remembers all the steps LOL! Only teasing. Her main problem when training me is that she gets impatient. Luckily she gives herself a stern talking to beforehand so she can usually control it.

    With the Roll Over my Mom had to help me over by grabbing my paw when I was first learning. Now that I know how I can get the momentum to get over all by myself. If your comfortable with it and not scared keep trying. Its fun, it just takes a LONG time to get comfy with. Good luck!

  14. Mango says:

    Honey! I am glad you liked my movie. You can understand how hard I had to work just to get that good and I know my moves still need some work.

    Yes, I thought I might have to show the weave poles in slow motion. I am quite the blur. I hope it wasn't too obvious that I kind of forgot I was weaving halfway through.

    I am having trouble with my marching because my legs are so long and they get stuck on momma, but if she backs out of range she can't reach my mouth. Oh well.

    Yes, I LOVE working on my moves and get quite excited when I know what is coming.


  15. Khyra says:

    I think woo and Mango would make khwite the dance team!

    Tank woo fur sharing your fun time with your bouncy Hugo pal!


  16. MrsDesperate says:

    Honey, you are such a clever, well-mannered dog, and your human is so clever with her training tips. I love the photos of you together; you guys have such a wonderful bond. Glad you had a fun walk/run/hunt with your doggie pal!

  17. You are so lucky you have such a great place to run! It is clear your human loves you too!

  18. Oskar says:

    Stay is always so hard, what if I'm missing something fun?

    It looks like you found a great place to play & who doesn't love rolling in dead things?

  19. Niamh says:

    You and your friend Hugo looked like you were having a great time playing. I love practicing the recall. Any time that I can run fast and get a reward at the end is worth it. Barbara plays hide 'n go seek with us all the time. It is an excellent game and we get trained at the same time.

    Your friend,

  20. Autumn says:

    What a great view you have there!!! I'd love to run on the wide space you have thereeeeeeeeeeee *drools*

    Both you and Hugo seems to have so much fun playing with each other.. If I were there I might be the smallest among both of you!!

    Thanks for sharing =]

    Hugs n kisses

  21. Kathie R says:

    Wow Honey!
    Those really are LONG distance recalls. Great job. The greater the distance, the faster we go : ) Hmmmm… Now if we can just increase the size of the rings at the obedience trials, we'll do great!


  22. Quick visit. I have tagged you on our blog :)

    Great workout there :)

  23. Wow you had a full weekend! I'm interested in hearing more about these new dance moves!

  24. Paco & Milo says:

    What a great days you had dear Honey!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    you're a very very very very lucky girl and your humans are very special!!!!!!
    We're back from our holiday and we're very very happy because now we could read about you and your adventures again!!!!!
    we missed you a lot!!!!
    Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwww……this video is marvellous!!!!
    We loved watchin how Hugo is able to jump around you…..he's a very very great jumper!!!!!!
    and you look evry day more and more gorgeous!!!!!!!!!!!
    We love you and your blog a lot and we're honored to be your friends!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Have a great week and don't forget us ok???????????!!!!!!!!!!!
    Lots of love and kisses dear friends!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  25. Dozer says:

    Hi Honey yes I also knows the difrence between wate and stay! Star is not so good at that yet. Mummy sez Star is lerning but I think Star is reely stoopid! Hahah!

    You shore are gracefull fer being so big! I am very impresed. Mummy sez I should take notes about being gracefull frum you.

    Yer pal Dozer

  26. kasha says:

    Oh Honey! You are such a great dog! I have been spending my morning watching all of your amazing videos!
    Hsin-Yi!, Thank you for your email again! I so appreciate you spending so much time on helping me. My husband and are trying the NILIF technique. What a great idea. We have been trying to teach her to stay for quite some time by telling her to stay and then giving her treats as we get further and further away. We are very slowly able to get far away, but Honey is like miles away! How do you get her to sit there for so long and so far away! I wish I could just send Africa your way and have her come back like Honey. We thought we knew what we were doing before, but you really KNOW what you are doing. Thanks again!
    Kasha and Africa

  27. Ruby & Penny says:

    Hi Honey
    What a great dog park to go exploring in. If we were there we could go into the rabbit holes and chase some out for you to catch. That would be fun.
    Thank you for the training advice. At obedience school we have been taught to stay and then come when called, but the wait command makes more sense. Mom is going to use it with us.
    Love Ruby & Penny

  28. That looked a great weekend. Your friend looks like a lot of fun.

    We like waiting and running to our humans too, it is such fun isn't it. :-)

    Holly & Zac…XX

  29. Mango says:

    Hey Honey, guess what? Momma decided to start teaching Pee-Wee dance moves and she said he was harder to teach than me! Yup, because all he wants to do is run around and jump and act like a fool and he doesn't concentrate on what she is teaching. Hah! So there!

    I was wondering if you would like to trade dance move tips privately with my most large and agile self. You can send me a pee-mail.



  30. Niamh says:

    Thanks for your nice comments Honey. My routine is to "Soul Limbo: by Booker T and the MGs and is calypso. I like it and it helps me show off my nice gaits. I am only doing Level II so the requirements aren't that difficult. But Barbara is nervous anyway. When we've polished up the routine we will definitely do a video. You can see some really nice videos at http://www.canine-freestyle.org

    Your friend,

  31. Amber says:

    What a fun time you had with Hugo! I think he is like me and should become a dentist in his next life. ;) I saw him licking your teeth and I too like to do this to my good pals! :) Great recall and good point about the 'stay' and 'wait' commands! :)


  32. Esther says:

    Wow, that dog park looks AWESOME. I wish we had something like that around our area!

    I only just found your site today but I'm totally loving it! :)

    -Esther and Winnie

  33. Great tips! We are going to the mountains for a weekend getaway. We'll see if we can get the 'rents to play hide n seek.

    Pruett and Daphne

  34. Great tip for sit vs. wait!

    What a great park. Ohio has nothing like that. :(

    What a fun friend.

    Gus and Waldo

  35. pointerpandemonium says:

    Wow you are so well trained Honey!! Much better than us!! Your walks are so interesting and fun!!

  36. Sasha says:

    Hi Honey

    My human and I usually practice some training when we go for walks, because my human says that me behaving myself in the lounge room isn't the same as me behaving myself outside when there's loads of distractions.

    I told her about your hide and seek game, and we thought it was a good idea, so we've started playing it. Whenever I wander off a bit too far, my human runs behind a tree or a bush, then calls me, and I go zooming to find her, it's so much fun!

    I love reading all your little tips, then I tell my human about them, and we try them out – thanks so much, Honey!

    Puppy kisses

  37. tyebo says:

    wow… i have a bullmastiff x greyhound aswell but ive never been able to find another one anywhere ( mines a rescue) hes name is tye and he has a really bully head and loves to bounce around.

    when hugo jumped at the camera at the end it so reminded me of tye its just the kind of thing that he would do….
    aswell as chewing socks, shoes, sofa's etc lol

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