Results 1 to 6 of 6

Thread: Control Playing with Water and Mud

  1. #1

    Default Control Playing with Water and Mud

    I have a gorgeous 16 months old white (!) Golden Retriever who loves water and even better: mud! As we live on a small 2.5 acre property with horses we have lots of great muddy spots for doggie to play in (as well as beautiful horse poo.. but thats not even that bad to get off . After a few days of rain we have a few great muddy spots in our fenced off back yard. In no time my white Golden is a beautiful black one...

    Simple question how do I teach my dog not to play in mud and water? Is it possible at all? I also want my dog to ask me permission before she goes in the pool or any other water.

    Thanks for any advice!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2009


    I guess you need a really reliable recall, and you need to give your dog permisson to do some stuff like "go for a swim" or "go play" when you have got time for clean up or there are no snakes around.

    If you put the "naughty" things on "permission" ie you decide when the dog is allowed to "go play" and otherwise keep the dog on lead until you have good recall in an space where you can prevent access to the mud.

    I know my favourite trainer will jump into her pond and pull her dog out if it goes in there without her permission. It's such a surprise to the dog, that it only happens once with her naughtiest dogs. Mind you that dog will be on lead around the pond for about a month before she tests the dog's self control again.

    And that's probably a good thing for your GR to be learning too - some self control? How long can you get a sit stay in front of his dinner. Will he recall going past his full dinner bowl without stopping to look at it let alone sniff or scoff it? Look up Triangle of Temptation in the training section and have a read.

    I never bothered with the tie out bit, we started with very short sit-stays with me standing next the dog and worked up from there. However I can't tie my dog to a post and expect her to behave, she will lunge at the end of the lead like a crazy thing for a while. So it depends what you want to achieve.

    So you're looking to get your dog to show some self control before you release it to play with verbal permission eg "go play". And you need a much better recall - which you start in an environment where the dog is likely to recall, ie no distractions so it learns what its job is, and then you introduce distractions (like mud puddles would be last) very slowly. It helps to know what your dog finds distracting and rank them from mildly distracting to irresistable and start with mildly distracting first.

    Where you know you've got no chance of your dog coming when you call - DON'T call. You just teach your dog to ignore your recall word/signal. Go get the dog instead.

    I can recommend Lesley Nelson's really reliable recall and Susan Garrett's crate games and Steve Courtney of K9pro's triangle of temptation.

    And from time to time Susan runs a recall program with lots of games for teaching recall. Some of these games are in her books "ruff love" and "shaping success" or you can sign up to her blog or facebook page or both so you're first to know when she offers the next recallers course online.

  3. #3


    Thanks Hyacinth. Great advice. I will certainly look into the recall excersises. My dog does know how to stay for a pretty long time but yes... calling her is a lot of time useless. I will need to put a lot more time in that. Thank you very much!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Southern NSW


    And then when they are out alone they still get muddy....LOL......Mine do I have just accepted that Katy and Lukey love mud and the dams. Annabelle and Tessa only clean water and when it is hot
    Pets are forever

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2011


    I have started thinking along the lines of Sue Garrett's training and Tot.
    Thanks for throwing the name in, Hyacinth

    Makes sense.
    Long way to go.

    Once recall issues are solved, life will be bliss!
    There are no paths, paths are made by walking
    2 Schnauzers, 1 mini girl 13 months, 1 standard boy 19 months.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2009


    Susan Garrett's book "ruff love" is mostly a very detailed program of "nothing in life is free" for a new puppy or rescue dog adult in the house.

    You can cherry pick from it and there are some bits she'd re-write now but it works... Dog will ask you for permission for everything.

    I use one of her tug games to build "relationship", and it goes like
    dog offers a sit,
    I say yes
    I take a step away, hold tug in front of dog and
    I say "geddit"
    dog jumps up and grabs toy and we have a great game of tug.

    That's when dog has a good understanding of geddit. I think she thought that waving the toy in front of her meant "geddit", and I've talked her out of that but now she isn't very sure about when she can get it. Which I find funny but it's not what we want, so I've got some more work to do.

    The other thing - for the preservation of your hands, is to require a sit if the dog lets go or "regrips" the toy. Ie if the dog lets go to grab a better hold, you've got to withhold the toy until you get the sit-yes-geddit going again.

    It's all about self control and permission.

    Dog was sitting at my kitchen bench barking because she wanted my plate of toast crumbs (asking permission). Sometimes I give it to her (reward asking not stealing). Today I thought it was a signal I should do the washing up sooner rather than later. Rewards should be random/intermittant not reliable for best results.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Tags for this Thread


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts