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Become the matador – the animal-friendly kind of course!


Dog runs back to you and through your legs


Some of our dogs run back to us no problem at all, we reach out to take hold of their collar or harness and – oops, they do a flyby! Here’s a game that encourages proximity.

How to train

1.Stand with your legs wide apart and your dog in front of you. With your right hand (or left if you’re left handed), lure your dog between your legs and around your right leg – use food or a toy. Mark and reward them beside your right leg. 

2. At your leg, ask for a ‘sit’. Mark and reward.

3. Once in sit, add a collar or harness touch. Mark and reward. 

4. Use your recall cue e.g. ‘Come!’ when your dog is a short distance from you. Repeat  the above steps. Throw the treat out in front and repeat!

Only move on when you can get 5/5 confidently and smoothly at each stage.


The Three Ds of dog training: distance, duration and distraction. We can use these to increase the challenge for our dogs. Choose just one to focus on per training session. 


Distance is how far away you are from your dog when they perform the task. The farther away you get, the harder your dog is likely to find it. When you’re adding distance, start close and build slowly.


Duration is the length of time your dog stays in position. Some behaviours don’t have a duration factor, such as jumping in the ‘rabbit’ challenge. Behaviours like ‘sit’ or ‘bear’ do require your dog to hold the position longer. The longer we ask them to hold it, the more difficult the task becomes. Be sure to start with a very short duration, just one second and build slowly.


Distraction involves whatever else is going on around your dog at the time, from a deer running across the mountain to a thunderstorm. If your dog finds it exciting or disrupting, it’s a distraction. 

Example: adding distraction

The skullduggerous Enemy knows our weak spots. When is comes to recall, distraction is always going to be the hardest D in our 3 Ds of dog training! Recalling in a quiet area may be easy but it’s a different game entirely when there are other dogs, people or the scent of rabbits around! Build up the distraction level slowly. See the separate ‘Recall’ challenge if your dog is struggling.