Author Options:

my dog keeps running out the door and wont listen...how do i train her not to go out the door??? Answered

 she slips out of the door when no one is looking and its a pain to get her back.
We were out until 2:30 am trying to get her last night. please help!!!




Best Answer 8 years ago

Your dog thinks it is part of a pack. You and your family are the other members if there are no other dogs in the house so you have to  make sure the dog understands that YOU are the pack leader and it does what you want.

This is what we translate into a well trained dog!

1. NEVER take the dog for a walk and let it run free or run on an extending lead. this allows the dog to go in front of everyone and it becomes by default the pack leader and takes responsibility for where you go and what you all do. ALWAYS keep it on a short lead and ensure it walks by your side all the time. in this way YOU are being the leader and taking all the decisions.

2. When you go to the door with the dog keep it on the lead. Make it sit whilst you attach the lead don't chase it or it becomes a game. Ensure it is ALWAYS YOU who goes through the door first not the dog. Your being the pack leader.

3. Use food treats to get the dog to sit on command and stay as long as you want it to stay. Then come to you when you call. Reward is a powerful medium and in the pack the leader would often give food to subordinate dogs to maintain leadership position.

4. EVERYONE in the family must be consistent in the way they treat the dog. It is a pet, yes, but not a TOY to play with. There is time for play although as they get older they naturally play about less. The dog should be able to tell the difference between play time and serious time.

5. If you do what many do and allow free running and little discipline time then, often, you end up with a neurotic dog that will not do as required, barks frantically at everything and may well be aggressive to other dogs or children, a dangerous situation. This is a dog that is insecure.

This process need not take long - a few days of concentrated effort in short bursts. The younger the dog the easier it is to instil the basics of obedience.

If you still feel uncertain about this join a dog training class and get professional advice - although be prepared for them to tell you just the same as above. At the end of the day YOU have to approach the dog in the right way or it will never be trained.

I see dogs that behave perfectly well for me but their owners can never handle them. Why because they don't do the above as it seems somehow cruel to keep the dog in a disciplined environment - not so - it is cruel to leave the dog to run free a dog doesn't don't live like a human.


8 years ago

More than likely, being outside is a whole lot of fun and excitement and thrills and just absolutely glorious!!  Think about it from her perspective.  There's an opportunity to have fun.  You take it.  Suddenly it's a great game of chase and you're always winning because no one can catch up to you.  There are all these new things to see and experience.  You don't know of anything bad that can happen to you.  Fun, fun, fun!  However, if you go back inside, the fun stops.  Booooo!!!

One way to overcome that is for you to be a whole lot more fun (or delicious) than her running out the door.  Take her for walks.  Play with her inside the house.  Teach her that the fun doesn't end once inside and that she will have a chance to take a walk with you and have fun that way.  It's about building a bond where you're a good guy and good to be around.

Then there's the formal training which is best to think about as like a game because dogs learn quickly when it's fun/challenging.  Teach her that when she comes to you, she gets a treat or a toy, but it has to be a really good treat or a super awesome toy at first like tasty chicken or a tug-o-war toy.  You want to train for quick, efficient recall so that when you call her, no matter the situation, she wants to go to you and does.  You are the best thing in the world to be around!

Also, teach her about boundaries.  This will be tricky to explain, but the goal is to teach her that staying inside is better than going outside.  Pair her willingness to to pay attention to you or to stay inside with a treat.  If she makes to go outside without being told to do so, make a corrective sound ("eh-eh").  You want to teach her that there is a command to go outside like "Outside" but it's super awesome to stay inside because there are rewards or it just feels right.  When she knows there's a command for going out, she won't take it as a given.

If she does bolt out the door, do not yell or scream at her or act angry.  That's not much of an enticement to go to you.  My dogs have slipped out the door but have thankfully not left the yard despite them having selective hearing.  When they have escaped, it's been at times when my SO or I have been outside, and when they were seen, one of us would squat down, smile, and say, "Hey der, puppy!  Come here!" or played a reverse game of chase where one of them had to catch us.  Thank goodness they both love cuddles and playtime more than just being outside.  Of course I was shaking once I got either in my arms.  SO SCARY!

Across the street, a woman regularly drops her dogs off with one of my neighbors, and inevitably one of them starts to wander.  She yells and screams and thrashes her arms and just can't believe her dog doesn't want to go back to her right away.  When she does get her dog to return, she picks him up roughly and continues to talk "mean" to him.  It's quite obvious to me why he doesn't run back to her right away.

Consult with a good dog trainer who is knowledgeable about positive reinforcement training and play training and has a list of recommendations.  If you don't want to go the formal obedience training route, you can go for agility training or something of that nature because you will build a bond and good recall just through the act of doing it.  Plus it might wear your dog out more in the end.

For the record, I don't think this is an alpha or pack leader or any of that Cesar Milan stuff issue.  It just seems like being outside is a whole lot of fun and she doesn't have enough incentive to return.  Punishing her probably won't do any good because she will doubtfully understand why she's being punished and will just have more incentive to stay outside for as long as possible.

8 years ago

.  You have some very good answers here. Technical term: alpha dog (sometimes alpha male, because the leader of wild packs is usually a male). As other have pointed out, the first thing you need to do is establish yourself as the leader (alpha) of the pack.
.  As orksecurity mentions, leaving the door open is the fault of the humans in the pack. Think of dogs as two or three year old children - they will get into everything if you don't keep a close eye on them.
.  I have a dog that likes to jump the fence. When she is outside and unsupervised, she is on a leash that is anchored on one end and not quite long enough for her to reach the fence.


8 years ago

Usually, dog training issues require training the human on how to train the dog. I'd suggest the two of you enroll in an obedience school. That will both help the dog learn to obey commands and help you learn to put them in terms she will understand.

It's also up to you not to leave the open door unattended. "no one is looking" means the humans aren't doing their job.

If I could train my cat to understand and obey "Stay", you should be able to train your dog to do so. Patience and consistency.


8 years ago

 RH makes some good points but i have two dogs who did the same thing but i need to know how old she is my dogs seemed to respond to these methods.

1. keep the door closed 

2. punishment for being bad (like putting her in a crate or a locked room for a day)

3. buy a tie-out (the metal or chain ones) and tie the tie-out to a tree or you could tie the tie-out somewhere in your house so she wont be able to get near the door.

4. take her for more walks ( like one every hour and a half) so she will be tired and she will feel satisfied because my dogs always ran off because they did not get to sniff everything that they wanted to.

5. i would also invest in an electric collar (worked with my dogs like a charm) i would get one that has different levels of "shock" because she might not respond to a low shock so whenever she gets near the door do a low shock just to warn her

6. she is probably escaping because she is bored so you need to keep her occupied buy her a www.kongcompany.com/worlds_best.html  and put a few treat insode and that will keep her busy for hours 

7. i would also do 30 minute checkups on her just to see where she is.

good luck 


8 years ago

it sounds like you have multipul training issues, a dog who wont come on command is a danger to itself. Start with the basics, sit, stay, come with the appropriate rewards and work up to the open door. In the mean time a childs gate may be helpful