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Whistle Commands

I have a 14 week old Chocolate lab who is doing very well and would like to introduce him to whistle commands. Could you please offer some recommendations on possible commands. At minimum I would like to send him right, left, back, sit and come. I have my own ideas but would like some feed back, once I start I will be stuck with these commands for a long time to come. I have seen Boarder Collies train and admire their ability to interpret whistle commands. (sure beats yelling)


You are right, whistle commands are definitely the way to go. At a minimum you should consider teaching the dog to stop and sit to a single whistle blast, and to come to you at the trill of three or four whistles. This starts by training the sit and come without the whistle, using a motivational technique. Later on you add the whistle to the command and then in time drop the use of the command. This is a gross oversimplification of all that is involved but it is not possible to describe the whole process in such a short reply. I describe the techniques in full detail in my eBook "The Ultimate Dog Obedience Book." You can download the eBook, along with others specific to retriever training at my website

As far a s using the whistle to control casting commands like left and right over, that is purely a matter of choice. Some handlers really find it to be helpful when the dog has trouble seeing or understanding the handler's hand signals. In general, handling is a highly technical and difficult skill to teach. Sometimes adding whistles only makes it harder for the dog learn.

Best of luck.

Bill Corcoran
FREE Obedience eBook when you buy our Fetch eBook or our new Marking eBook!

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