Whistle: for recalls or emergencies?

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Sabrina
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Whistle: for recalls or emergencies?

Post by Sabrina » Tue Jul 13, 2010 11:30 am

Hi everyone! I’ve been really impressed by the stories I’ve read on this forum about successful recalls to a whistle. Right now Charley is always leashed when we’re outside (we have a small non-fenced yard, so he’s even on leash for potty breaks). We live in town so he’ll always be leashed for walks. When we’re at the park he has either 8ft or 16ft of leash, and I’ve been working with him on turning “this way” before he reaches the end of the leash (that’s going really well). I don’t envision ever having him unleashed in an unfenced area (he’s a dachshund – one good scent trail and he’d be off!), but I can see how a whistle recall would be very valuable if he ever got loose of his leash.

I currently carry a very loud whistle with me for emergency situations. I haven’t had to use it yet (silly me, I forgot it the day we had our last bad encounter with a dog who climbed it's fence. Thankfully the owners heard me calling for assistance). Unfortunately in our town, loose dogs/bored dogs behind inadequate fences are common. :evil: So, if I taught Charley to recall to a whistle and then had to whistle for help in an emergency (attack by another dog, etc.), that would ruin his recall, wouldn’t it? Or would he differentiate a short whistle burst (recall) from multiple long blasts (emergency)? Do you think it would be more valuable to make the whistle only for recall and rely on my pepper spray (legal here) and hollering for assistance if we get into an emergency situation?

Charley has a good recall to “come” in the house - the treats I have are more interesting than anything else :lol:. If I work with him in lots of distracting situations with the word “come” (I’m seeing hot dogs in my future… :mrgreen:), would this be as powerful as a whistle if he got loose of his leash?

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forkin14
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Re: Whistle: for recalls or emergencies?

Post by forkin14 » Tue Jul 13, 2010 11:45 am

If you wanted, you could just get two DIFFERENT whistles and clip them onto the same string. Use one for recall with Charley and the other for emergencies. Just make sure you label them or get two different colors so they don't get mixed up.

And I can't be too sure about this, but I always though that herders sometimes trained collies (and maybe hunters with hounds?) with different whistle lengths (like a long one vs short bursts) so that may work, but again I'm not too sure about that.

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Re: Whistle: for recalls or emergencies?

Post by emmabeth » Tue Jul 13, 2010 11:47 am

Use a different toned whistle - google for gundog whistles you should find them, they come in a variety of pitches so if you train the recall to the pitched whistle.... you shouldnt ruin that by using the other one for emergencies (also it helps then if you lose your whistle, you know what pitch to buy to replace it exactly).

I wouldnt have thought it would ruin the recall though, do you have a lot of whistle-requiring emergencies?? If you are out with him you are likely to have treats so as soon as you could you could reward him for being near you.

Or, swap your emergency whistle for a personal alarm?
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Sabrina
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Re: Whistle: for recalls or emergencies?

Post by Sabrina » Tue Jul 13, 2010 12:39 pm

Thanks guys --- I didn't know you could get whistles with different tones: that sounds like a good solution. (And the ability to get one of the same pitch if I, erm, missplace it is a good idea for me! :mrgreen: )

I haven't had to use my whistle yet for emergencies -- there aren't really that many bad situations I encounter when I'm out with Charley, but there are enough "potential situations" that I feel much more prepared with an emergency whistle (but I'll have to check out personal alarms, too). Charley hasn't heard me whistle at all yet, so I could teach him to associate it with something really great (hot dogs!). I was just worried that if he heard his come-get-a-yummy-hot-dog whistle in a the midst of an emergency that he'd always associate the whistle with something frightening....???

Off to flush out a gun dog whistle :lol: Thanks again!

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Re: Whistle: for recalls or emergencies?

Post by Fundog » Tue Jul 13, 2010 1:11 pm

And besides pitch, a lot of hunters use a certain number of blows on the whistle to mean certain things, like one long one to do one thing, and two short ones to do something else. My own dogs are trained to several different sounds of whistle (only for recall though): I mostly use my lips for closer distances, or I've got a schoolyard whistle for larger areas, and then my husband has his own distinctive whistle, which they both recognize as their daddy calling. All three whistles work on my dogs for recall Incidentally, Mr. Fundog uses a different whistle pattern (with his own lips and fingers in his mouth) to call each of our sons, for the dogs, for calling ME :!: and for requesting either coffee or a beer. :shock: I have to say, it works better than shouting, and is a lot less offensive to the neighbors.
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Nettle
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Re: Whistle: for recalls or emergencies?

Post by Nettle » Tue Jul 13, 2010 3:49 pm

I always train my dogs to stop dead in response to one toot on a whistle. Actually I don't always remember the whistle so I use a mouth whistle. :lol: Anyway - that is so easy to teach and might save a life one day.

All you have to do is walk smartly along, dog beside you on lead, whistle and stop dead at the same time. The first few times will catch the dog out, but very soon the dog will stop dead when it hears the whistle. Reward lavishly.

Don't forget when you want to walk on, to give the dog a command telling it you are about to get going again, so that it doesn't get its neck jerked as you set off again.

It doesn't work with a dawdle, so not for the sniffing part of a walk - really steam along at a good clip.
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Re: Whistle: for recalls or emergencies?

Post by Fundog » Tue Jul 13, 2010 7:41 pm

Nettle wrote:I always train my dogs to stop dead in response to one toot on a whistle. Actually I don't always remember the whistle so I use a mouth whistle. :lol: Anyway - that is so easy to teach and might save a life one day.

All you have to do is walk smartly along, dog beside you on lead, whistle and stop dead at the same time. The first few times will catch the dog out, but very soon the dog will stop dead when it hears the whistle. Reward lavishly.

Don't forget when you want to walk on, to give the dog a command telling it you are about to get going again, so that it doesn't get its neck jerked as you set off again.

It doesn't work with a dawdle, so not for the sniffing part of a walk - really steam along at a good clip.
Hmm... :idea: I need to remember this! :)
If an opportunity comes to you in life, say yes first, even if you don't know how to do it.

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Sabrina
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Re: Whistle: for recalls or emergencies?

Post by Sabrina » Wed Jul 14, 2010 3:07 pm

Wow, thanks so much you guys --- you're awesome 8) . I never thought about all the different things I could communicate with different whistle patterns.
Fundog wrote: Incidentally, Mr. Fundog uses a different whistle pattern (with his own lips and fingers in his mouth) to call each of our sons, for the dogs, for calling ME :!:
That totally made me think of the scene in Sound of Music with Captain Von Trapp's different whistles and Maria's response :lol: :lol: :lol:

And Nettle, thanks so much for sharing how you taught "stop" - I am definitely going to teach that to Charley!

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