He keeps running and will not stop!!

by Jon
(Billericay)


My Springer Ernie is just six months, I exercise him every day and he’s doing OK when it is just me and him, but as soon as another dog or person is anywhere within about 5 miles he disappears into the distance after them and will not come back. The whistle that he is very good with (when we are alone) is totally ignored. It really is getting quite embarrassing as all the other dog walkers now know him by name, due do my futile cry’s of ERNIE as a little black and white bum disappears across the field. Any ideas would be much appreciated.

Jon

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Jul 21, 2013
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Fishing line NEW
by: HerosOwner

I used to have a dog who was great leashed but who knew the instant she wasn't. I used fishing line (you can tie a little dowel to the end as a grip). Then when she thought she was free and didn't have to listen, I still had control. I haven't had to do that with my springer - but I did have to wait for a little maturity to set in before I could trust him. Now if I can get him to stop barking at people running by the dog park....

Jun 13, 2013
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Hope this helps, part 2 NEW
by: Paula

(part 2.) He has his freedom in the evening as I’m not clock watching, his re-call isn’t perfect, but I practice re-calls with him, so even if I don’t want/or need him back, I try to set him up not to fail, re-call your boy when you’re pretty sure he’s responsive to you & there’s a good chance he may actually come, it won’t work when Griffin has his nose in the undergrowth but if he looks up & is heading towards me anyway, I re-call him, I don’t always use sound, I put my arms up high (my whistle is not that good), have a really temping food treat if he’s food driven, or a favourite toy & always make a huge fuss when he does come back, it must never be negative, even if he didn’t come immediately, it’s important to make a huge fuss if he does come back first time, if it takes a couple still be pleased with him, but not overjoyed, if that makes sense.

Yes you are taking a chance, only you know your dog, you may also need to use a long training lead & practice the recall, make a real fuss of him, be pleased when he comes back & give him a special food treat, Griffin is food driven, so would take a year old dry biscuit, but make it a real bonus, cooked chicken, cheese, liver, something tempting & lots of fuss when he gets it right, then re-enforce, re-enforce, re-enforce
Try to make his walk with you more interesting, interact with him, don’t just let him run & find his own fun cos he will, so a ball not just to throw, but you can seek with him, Springer’s like to use their brain & that clever nose, it’ll mentally tire him out, I take a ball, an old sock with a knot tied in it, anything your dog likes to hold, Griffin prefers softer items in his mouth, make sure your scent is on the item, if he’s near you, throw it in long grass, send him to find the item, he'll feel he’s working, don’t use anything you'd be sad not to find again!

You may just find that channelling that energy by using his brain, Springer’s are clever dogs, the physical energy may just subside to something more manageable, look at your energy & stress too & he will see you chasing him as a game, have you tried, when it’s safe to do so, running away from him, get him to chase you? & sorry I know it’s frustrating but sneaking up behind him to grab him when you’re probably pretty stressed will send him negative vibes certainly if he’s as sensitive as Griffin, deep breath, be calm, patient & consistent & good luck, let me know how you get on.

Jun 13, 2013
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Hope this helps... NEW
by: Paula

I will post in 2 parts as not enough characters for the whole thing...

Hi Richard,
(part 1.) Sorry it’s going to sound about Griffin & what I’m going through/been through, but it’s what seems to be working for me, I hope you get some tips.

Griffin has loads of energy too & would run for hours if I had the time to let him, I’ve found he gets his energy from me & I’ve reflected recently on my ‘energy’ & it wasn’t a good calm energy, my mind was frantic & that affected him, my mind was saying ‘I’ve got to get him out, got to let him run, got to get rid of his energy, got to do this, got to do that, got to get to work!’ I was thinking all this & Griffin sensed my stress.
I now take him for a longish disciplined road walk each morning, it’s been tough as I’d let his lead manners slip, he tended to pull, so for the first week we only got 300m or so, when he pulled I’d stop, he soon learnt that we don’t move forward unless the lead is relaxed, the lead is a soft 6ft or so slip lead, before I was literally being TAKEN FOR A WALK & not the other way round! Road walking is ok, it means he can have a good sniff, find out what dogs have been around the area he lives & that’s important, we arrive back at the house more relaxed & with some time to have a play or he gets a good brush.

Jun 13, 2013
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2.5 year or Springer doesn't recall! NEW
by: Anonymous

Hi,

We have the same problem with our 2.5 year old English Springer Spaniel. It seems to be a running theme with Springers! He is crazy and full of energy so we try to walk him as much as possible. Normally he is on leash, but I will let him offleash at our local dog park. He will run off, but I know if I clap my hands our whistle he will run towards me. That is fine when I am walking as well, but when I want him to actually come directly to me he wont. Never! It gets very annoying as I need to chase him in order to put him back on the leash. And you cant really chase a dog, because they see it as a game and will keep on running. Often other dog walkers will grab him, or I will sneak up behind him and grab. Sometimes it takes ages to get him back on the leash.

I would love some advice. I know people will say "he shouldn't be offleash until he recalls" but he has so much energy that he needs to be offleash to burn it off.

Any ideas?!?

Richard

Jan 19, 2013
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Recall to command NEW
by: Anonymous

RECALL TO COMMAND WHEN OUT WALKING AND OFF THE LEASH. FIND A GOOD QUALITY WHISTLE THAT CAN BE ADJUSTED BY PITCH. WHEN YOU DOG IS ASLEEP BLOW THE WHISTLE GENTLY AND ADJUST TILL HE/SHE JUMPS UP. RIGHT NOW YOU'VE FOUND THE RIGHT PITCH, IT'S TIME TO TRAIN TO RECALL. START BY BLOWING THE WHISTLE SHORT AND SHARP, THE DOG RESPONDS THEN GIVE A FAROURITE TREAT, KEEP DOING THIS 10 MINS A DAY FOR TWO WEEKS IN THE GARDEN. NOW YOU'VE GOT THE THEIR ATTENTION !! USE THE SAME METHOD WHEN OUT WALKING,CALLING THE DOG BACK AT RANDOM INTERVALS, KEEP DOING THIS FOR ANOTHER TWO WEEKS YOU SHOULD NOW HAVE THEM TO RECALL WITH ONE SHARP BLOW OF THE WHISTLE. I ALSO KEEP THIS TOPPED UP WHEN THEY ARE OUT IN THE GARDEN, WHEN I WANT THEM TO COME IN. BEST RESULTS ARE OFTEN GAINED BY USING COOKED CHICKEN PIECIES THEN MOVE OVER TO DOG TREATS LIKE GRAVY BONES. YOUNG PUPS MAY NEED A LITTLE LONGER AND ANY AGED DOG CAN BE TRAINED TO RECALL THIS WAY. A WHISTLE CAN BE HEARD A MILE AWAY AND TRVELS BETTER THAN YOUR VOICE. NEVER CHASE AFTER A DOG, THEY SEE THIS AS A GAME ALWAYS WALK AWAY IN A DIFFERANT DIRECTION

Nov 16, 2012
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run away springer NEW
by: running fool

I've just taken on a 7 month male springer Alfie for the first two weeks i took my time making sure i could trust him with basic commands he was very good except for his walking to heel ! so book'd him into a local gun dog trainer for some heel work which was brill next day i set off for our normal walk and had him walk to heel down to my local fields where I've been letting him off the lead with no problems,

but this time he went off like a rocket it took me almost 2 hrs to get him back i used treats ball games whistle running away from calling him even on my knees begging lol but he just ignored me as if i no longer was even there

3 fields two barb wire fence's and a lot of cuts to my legs later I got him to come back I'm totally worried I'll not be able to let him off the leadf ever again which is gutting I know how much he loves to run and I'm sure a walk on the lead is no way enouth exercise for him please please help me

Oct 13, 2012
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Training NEW
by: Michele

There is nothing more annoying than a dog that will not come when you call! Unfortunately, there is no way around this but training and patience. I would not use one of those collars. I would start training on a leash. I would not remove the leash until I was certain he would return when called and only in a fenced in area.


Oct 11, 2012
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my 3 year old springer NEW
by: kelsey

I have a three year old springer called Barkley he is very well behaved in our house but as soon as we go out he pulls and when we let him off the lead he will run but not out of sight and when we go to call him to come back he doesn't listen. He will ignore you completely it can take up to an hour to get him back. The previous owners of Barkley said he was good at everything so obviously we thought it would be great to take him on. Now he can think he can get away with everything but what's even worse that we have tried everything treats,toys and praise but nothing we have just brought an electric collar but we wanted to avoid that so please can anyone help me or is three to old to train because I know that he would make an amazing gun dog. thankyou

Apr 19, 2012
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Recall NEW
by: Michele

I would never allow a dog off lead until he /she was perfect at recall while on a leash. Get yourself at least a 6' leash. Secure to your dog's collar and start training! Have the dog sit and stay. Step a couple of feet away making sure he sits and stays. Call him to you. Lots of praise when he heads right to you. Correction if he heads in another direction! Do this every day for about 10 minutes. Dogs don't have a long attention span, so more than 10 or 15 minutes is a waste of your time. After a couple of days, take a couple of more steps back. Once you think he had mastered recall on a leash, try recall off leash, but in an area that is secure...meaning a fenced in yard or similar. Then try the training without the leash. If he won't recall off leash, start over on leash. This is an obedience that can take some time, so be patient!

Apr 18, 2012
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Our new boys recall problems NEW
by: Dee

We have agreed to take on a 3 year old springer. He lived with a portugese family from being a pup but a few months ago they went back abroad, so a friend took him on. They cant keep him due to their little girl being allergic so we have said we would love to take him. He's a great boy and really good in the home, however when out and off the lead he wonders around not going to far from you, but he doesnt like to come back at all when you call him and if he see's the car when its time to go he's off. We dont actually pick him up for a week but the people who have him at the moment brought him down for us to meet and we walked with them to see what he's like. I have no worries about taking him on at all, and have lots of experience in keeping dogs, but this is my first springer and to be honest I've always trained recal from a pup. This may sound daft, but we did wonder if the first owners actually trained him in portugese and he simply doesnt understand? Could this be so? We walk daily, and spend our weekends , holidays and spare time camping and walking through the dales/peaks/moors etc for a good 10-15 miles at a time, we know he will love this, but I'm worried about him not coming back when up in the middle of nowhere. I hate the thought of keeping him on a leash all the time (though will in areas where its asked of dog owners) because I love to see them run of their energy and enjoy the rivers and fields etc.
If anyone has any tips I'd be really really grateful.
Many thanks.

Dec 13, 2011
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Running off, we know what you mean ;-) NEW
by: Paula & Lee

Jon, Ernie is adorable, looking at the first post it was Nov 2009, so I’m guessing Ernie is older & wiser now at around 2 ½ years old, I hope so, but knowing the Springer breed, maybe not…

I was going to say that our Springer Griffin, who’s now 8 ½ months old went through the same thing at 6 months, other dogs were just too tempting & he would bomb over & not come back when called, he’s just that little bit older now & we can see he’s maturing, occasionally he’s been told off a couple of times by other dogs & I admit that I’ve taken a chance & trusted that other dog owners would muzzle their dog if it was truly nasty & as I tend to walk the same places so meet the same people & dogs I hoped it wasn’t so much of a chance, so I kind of let Griffin find his paws.

Now he either doesn’t bother at all or if he does go over to say hi he soon comes back when called… I always have a pocket full of treats & now find that if I’ve not recalled him for a while during our walk he’ll come back to me as if to say ‘hi mum/dad, have you forgotten me, how about a treat’ which is great, he gets a treat & huge praise, he does this pretty frequently during walks & we think it was because when he was 6 months old we did a lot of running away from him when he didn’t come when called which he didn’t like.

Woods are still an issue as there’s so so much to explore, he has lost us a few times, but I heard once that if your dog loses you it’s best not to walk on too far from where you last saw him or her, they should soon realise & go back to the last place they were with you, also try not to call too much as this could disorientate them (I don’t have any experience of whistles).

But don’t you just love Springer Spangles, I know we do…


Nov 02, 2011
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To Nick & Karen
by: Rose

You say you "always praised them on return" after they have run off & done their own thing! You are reinforcing the message to them that it is ok to do this. I would try this, releash them following an escape using neither praising or scolding; then place your hands either side of their head,like a child really & firmly say your chosen disapproval word which you should use every time they do something which you would like correcting. Take them home in silence. They will eventually get your disapproval message.
A longer length training lead will give you more control whilst training them & also give them distance to roam further but only just as far as you will permit them. Until you are confident they recognise you as their leader & your commands for no messing about you really need to control them on lead before even thinking allowing them freedom to run. Its tedious & difficult but necessary. By the way, I tried a training club where the trainers idea of correction for example was to physically force my dogs bottom down, I left after 3 classes along with many other attendees & I found my own methods more effective. Just get to know your dog they will test you to learn what you will let them get away with! Regards Rose

Nov 01, 2011
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Hes enjoying life, make yourself more fun
by: Rose

Hi, my male springer is one year old now. My experience is that calling them actually excites them to run more. Patience is required it can take a while.Ive tried various techniques and find that running in the opposite direction with a loud pitched lalalala gets his attention to come my way. Whistling has good results, one whistle get his attention - he stops & questions me why, 2 whistles - he knows he can walk on, multiple whistles - he follows me. This can be varied with saying "this way" if I want him to change direction & hand signals pointing left or right. When he is most distanced from me I slap my thighs and enthusiatically call come on good boy. My guess is every dog will respond to their owner its just getting the right words to catch his attention. They are so curious, excitable & unique & great fun finding out what clicks with them. I would also try a game of ball which my dog loves. Hope this helps

Oct 03, 2011
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Recall
by: Michele

I hope this won't come off as being rude, but I never unleash my Springers once they've left the safety of their fenced in yard. They're both good at recall, but I don't want to take a chance that they could be injured while running loose.

Oct 01, 2011
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Can't get their attention when out on walks
by: Nick and Karen

We hsve two Springers both from pups both 1 year. They are like partners in crime when out on walks. They both have really good recall at home and are doing really well with obedience training in their own environment but once out in the woods let off the lead they are gone.
We have tried toys treats as rewards but they are really so distracted by any scent that they don't show the slightest interest. We are now becoming desperate to gain some control but don't feel we have a starting point, we now walk them seperately with the hope that this will help engage their attention but feel we take a risk each time they are out.
They recently ran off and after a tele call from a rescuer they had run to the next village about 5 miles away, crossed a busy road and were sat very happily waiting collection, they didn't seem to realise that they had done anything wrong.
We have never shouted at them and always praised them on return, but this can be an hour after we saw them and we have been calling them and searching for them all of this time sometimes wonder how they are supposed to learn that running away is wrong?
We love our pets and could't imagine life without them we are completely devoted pet owners but really need some good advise as we can't exercise them enough on the lead, they wouldn't burn off enough energy but they are making our lives miserable as everyday we have the same stress worry frustration and yes embarassment of two dogs completely ignoring our commands.
HELP PLEASSE!!!!

Jul 14, 2011
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Springer love.....
by: Annieb51

We have raised 2 sets Springers. All of your comments are good. All of your dogs are doing fine. They are naturally curious, and THINK they are loved by all. So, they really are not afraid to meet anyone in or outs of your house or yard.
But, you must anticipate their actions when outside. And, likewise, must be outdoors with them if they are going to be outside for awhile. All of you know what makes them run and probably know WHEN they are going to run. You just enforce the borders of your property again and again with your dog(s), if they run. And, likewise, never yell or punish them when they come back inside their border. You WANT them to want to always come home. I always assess the situation outside before letting my dogs out. I try and make sure nothing is there to cause them to "think" the grass is greener on the other side. Whether it's kids, or food, whatever.....you must be able to be THEIR ALPHA or leader at all times. And, at 11, yes, I am still training them both, always. Just a gentle reminder now, but as I anticipate a problem, like another dog, on leash walking down the other side of the street, both look at me as if to get permission, which I never give because the dog is on the OTHER side of the street! Ha ha! And, because they both hesitate, that tells me they are thinking and not running away from me. THAT will earn them a treat every time! Springers are great dogs, huge amount of compassion and want to please, as most dogs do.. If you love them, but also be firm with them when you are training them, messages will be clear to them, and they will do exactly what you tell them to do. Maybe, not right away when they are young, but working with Springers is a 24/7 deal. Remember, dogs wait to do nothing but to love you. They will put you 1st every time, if you take the time to work with them and love them back. Our 3rd set of Springers will be arriving soon, can't wait!

May 16, 2011
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Running
by: Michele

Find yourself a good obedience class and skip the shock collars.

May 16, 2011
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Shock Collars Work like Magic!
by: Anonymous

Yes, my TWO springer spaniel males do the same thing, once we didnt see little johnny for hours then finally heard whinning by the front door. This can be scary. We found shock collars. They work and most people say they are inhumane, I'm sorry but, they are fine; test it on your finger. they are expensive but super effectice you can walk without a leash, our springers knew right away, that mean't stay. You find the collars at a lot of pet and hunting stores. Hope this helps!

Apr 30, 2011
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Springer running
by: Anonymous

Our springer is at times a runner. He is now a year old and will come back(most off the time) when called. First I had to get the kids to stop running after him, screaming his name in a panic. Then we trained him to come in from outside the yard by saying treat or if he is really tying to ignore we say bed. (he gets a treat for coming in and also when he goes to bed) so he associates those words with treats. Worse case if he runs off out the front door(which will sometimes happen if a bird or cat is outside) I shake a box of treats real loud and he comes running back. Also when we call him we make sure we are down like we are going to hug him and call his name so we he looks he knows if he comes to us he gets attention. He now comes in from outside and runs to his bed so he can get the treat this also helped the digging to stop because he runs in when ready. It took alot of patients and consistency but has paid off. Good thing he will do almost anything for a treat.

Apr 26, 2011
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running off
by: leon

my dog was doing this a lot rocky he is 11 mths old english springer . i got him when he was 10 mths old from a lady who had him as a pet ? when i went to collect him from her. a 400 round mile trip .i could see straight away he ruled the roost wrecking her home and she was screaming at him constant his name then was rocket .so a name change was in order which he took to .his obedience was nill i have managed in the garden to get him to sit and stay till recalled works everytime he will now heal on leash on the road .i got him for picking up pigeon / crow i have been taking him shooting allowing him to be 40 yrds away in my truck to break him in to the gun .this weekend the farm was quite and i thought i would try him off the leash and bring him to the spot where i shot. he picked up my crows and retreived them to hand very nicely .BUT after. a butterfly went by he chased it for 300 yrds before returning .he has come a long way and hopefully make my new shooting companion .leon

Feb 05, 2011
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He keeps running and won't stop
by: carla

Well all that sounds so like our Jasper, he's 18 months old now and off with any sniff of a dog. Both me and my husband train him all the time when out, which is twice a day but like you all say brilliant one to one, but any scent he's off. We have tried everything even the spray collars but to no avail. It worries me that the dog he runs after one day will not be so friendly and he gets hurt. We would like to breed him one day so don't want him castratered. We are hoping he will grow out of it but I don't know.........

Aug 06, 2010
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He can hear you
by: Anonymous

Springers are hunting dogs and love nothing better. Try some gundog training theres plenty of material on the internet and books on how to train.


These dogs love to train but dont over do it 15mins a day max.

May 03, 2010
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lil ernie .... he is soooo gorgeous
by: Anonymous

hey....i sympathise...my jessie is very much the same and shes now 15 month...i went to see ceaser milan and its all about the karma apparently...

Basically...your dog is just so darned happy chasin off lead he cant hear you or refuses to listen..bit like a child going through terrible two's..

You need to train him...easier said than done ,,,i know!!! but in the house practice recall with food...and when ur out keep him on lead and reward him on recall..you need him to learn that u are more intersting than anything off lead

it takes time....one day at a time...but it does work

hugs x

Feb 08, 2010
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Try this
by: John

Not sure it will work for everyone but my Springer (Rocky age 7) had a similar problem (and sometimes still does). We often walk/jog in the woods and I let him off the lead. There are times when he is so focused on following a scent, he will not listen to my commands. When I see that he gets in this state, I take two fingers and touch his back hind legs, not hard but enough that he notices. The physical contact will often break him out of this state. In addition, will only allow him to go a short distance before recalling him. The second time a little farther, the third a little farther, you get the point. It is still a challenge but maybe you should try some of these suggestions and let me know if it works for you.

Nov 28, 2009
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He keeps on running....
by: Estie

Not that I'm any expert because ours are age 4 and 5. The 5-yr-old finally started to come back when called. The 4-yr-old, Sammy, that we've had for 2 years, is at the stage where he will atleast acknowledge the call. My husband has been spending ALOT of time with him training him, and it is paying off. You have to have treats that are worthwhile to give up the chase and come back to you.

You have to practice, practice, practice! But it will pay off, and he will come when called eventually!

Nov 28, 2009
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Running
by: Michele

I would look for a basic obedience class in your area. I'm sure you probably have some type of dog club close by. Often dog clubs offer obedience training for a minimal charge. You learn all kinds of things besides basic commands and I really think you're being trained too! I would stay away from obedience classes given at pet shops, but try to stick with a dog club. Even your larger boarding kennels offer obedience training.

It's not just that the neighbors probably don't think it's cute, but there is the chance your beloved Ernie could be hit by a car. Good luck!

Nov 28, 2009
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Ernie Keeps On Running
by: Anonymous

Sometimes, if you can enlist the help of another friend with a young dog of the same high energy, it helps if they can wear each other out when you are out in the field. Plan, with the other owner, to practice recalls together. If you each have a pocket full of great treats (pieces of roast beef or cheese cut into dice size pieces). Practice with very long lines, or in a safe place where they can be off lead. It sounds as if you have a good basic recall, but need to up the ante so that his response is energetic and automatic when something more exciting intrudes. Having the other dog and owner will provide a situation with distractions. After a few sessions with success, make it so he doesn't get a treat every time.

Recall is so important, but as you know, it can be frustrating with a young spaniel! I thought my boy was doing really well, but last month he chased a kitty into someones house, then into the kitchen where they were making breakfast! I was so embarrassed, but he wouldn't "Come" for anything when faced with cooking bacon in a stranger's house. I had felt safe with him off lead on the beach while playing frisbee. Oh well.
Good luck, Ernie is a lucky boy to have you.

Nov 28, 2009
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ME, TOO
by: JUNE

I HAVE THE SAME PROBLEM WITH EMMA. SHE IS SO WELL BEHAVED WHEN IT IS JUST ME (OR ME AND MY SON)
BUT IF SHE SEES A NEIGHBOR, SHE'S GONE. YOU CAN'T FAULT HER FOR BEING FRIENDLY, BUT IT CONCERNS ME. AS MUCH AS I LOVE HER, I KNOW MY NEIGHBORS DON'T FEEL THE SAME. I WOULDN'T WANT TO BE OUT IN MY YARD AND HAVE A DOG RUN UP TO ME EVERYTIME I SET FOOT OUT THE DOOR.

I KEEP HER ON A LEASH WHEN WE ARE OUT, WHICH IS NOT FAIR TO HER EITHER. BUT IF I LET HER OUT AT NIGHT, SHE DOES NOT LEAVE THE YARD.

WE BOTH NEED HELP!!!!!!

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