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Is your dog suddenly refusing to come inside your home when walks or playtime are over? You’re surely not alone. There are a lot of dog owners that talk about the pet coming to the door but then walk or even run away as soon as you open it to get in. Below you will find some of the most common reasons for this behavior.
Your dog needs more outside time
It’s a known fact that your pet is getting most of the positive experiences and the needed reinforcement when running around the yard. The same cannot be said once they step inside when there could be little to do for your dog. The first thing you can do is let your dog roam outdoors more. Although most dogs will need about two hours outside to explore their surroundings and train their senses, there isn’t a set rule on the minimum of outside time the pet should receive.
Along with giving your dog enough outside time, it is also very important to give him positive experiences while you spend time in your home. For example, when the weather is keeping you inside, try doing some puzzles and mental exercises with your dog to keep him entertained. Your dog should understand that outside isn’t the only place where he can have fun and that your home is also a fun and entertaining place.
Abrupt environment changes inside the house
A sudden change in the environment the dog finds inside the house can also lead to a change in his behavior. Did you make any big changes to your house recently? Have you maybe used a new, strong household cleaner with a less than pleasant smell? Not only new objects, but new smells can also cause your dog to develop stress or anxiety each time he gets home.
A possible health issue
An underlying health problem might also make your dog act strange, even if he has no other visible physical symptoms. If the dog seems normal but is still acting lethargic while you take him for a walk or is acting strange when getting inside the house, you might have to schedule a trip to the vet for a consultation, just to make sure that everything is ok.
What can you do when your dog refuses to come inside?
If you have ruled out any health-related issues for the sudden changes in the behavior of your pet, then it is time for you to update your dog’s training by teaching him the recall command. If you have an especially stubborn dog, then it might take quite some patience and time to teach him the recall command.
This training should start with you coming up with a command simple enough that the dog remembers with ease. One example is the “come” command. Keep in mind that this particular command should be distinct so that it can’t be mixed with any other commands that the dog already knows. Will should then get some treats that the dog likes and go to an enclosed, quiet place.
Make sure you put some distance between you and your dog and then just use the recall command. Repeat the command until the dog comes to you and then give him a treat. Repeat this process until the pet understands it. As he follows this command easier and easier, make sure to put more and more distance between you and him so that the command is harder to follow.