The saying goes, “Curiosity killed the cat.” Unfortunately, it can also kill dogs. It’s curiosity that will motivate dogs to want to run – to run away if they have the chance. Dog owners have watched their dogs die as the dogs bolted into the street and into the path of approaching vehicles.
Think of dogs as though they’re children. Tell a child they can’t do something and you will tweak the child’s curiosity – they’ll want to know what they can’t do. Dogs are much the same way. They are on a leash, or penned in a fenced back yard, whenever they’re outdoors. Take them off the leash, or throw the gate to the fence open, and curiosity will send them charging off in almost any direction.
Of course, there are other things that can make a dog takeoff running. For instance, they might see a rabbit across the street and charge over to play. They could see another dog and, depending on your dog’s temperament and how your dog and the other dog get along, they could run to the other dog to play or intimidate.
In some cases, however, simply having the rare and unexpected freedom to run is all the incentive they need.
What can you do to keep your dog from running away?
There are several options available to avoid having to put photos of your dog up on telephone poles with phone numbers in case someone has seen your dog. The basic alternatives include:
- Taking care that your dog never gets loose. This, of course, isn’t a fool-proof method of ensuring your dog never runs away. If it were, you would probably never have seen a ‘Lost Dog’ sign on a telephone pole before.
- Installing an Invisible Fence. This can do wonders to train your dog to stay in the yard. And, you won’t need to worry about a regular fence or a leash.
- The best thing you can do to ensure your dog doesn’t run away is to train your dog. Training your dog means training your dog not to run, training your dog to stay in its yard and training your dog to come when called. One essential part of training your dog, and an extra benefit, if you choose to look at it this way, is developing a caring relationship with your dog. Your dog will come to trust you and you will come to trust your dog.