Dog running with leash in his mouth

Reprimanding a dog for running from you is one surefire way to make sure he's even harder to catch the next time. Wouldn't you keep running if you knew you'd get punished when caught?

If your dog takes off on you, kneel down and open your arms when calling to make yourself more inviting. If that doesn't work, try to use a command he knows well, like "sit" instead of "come." Many dogs know "sit" so well that they'll plant their rumps, and once they're sitting, you might be able to walk up and take their collars. Another possibility is to catch your dog's attention and run in the other direction, enticing him to follow you. The chase instinct is very strong in dogs, and it may well work.

When you have your dog safely back on leash, praise him, be grateful and make a vow that you'll take the time to teach him this most important of commands. Because next time he's out, you may not be so lucky to get him back in one piece.