First of all, there is no Come Here command. At best, it’s a Come Here suggestion. In a dog’s world you don’t do anything without asking yourself, “What’s in it for me?” If there is something positive or potentially positive, then the suggestion might be obeyed. For instance, when a human has a treat in their hand, a dog biscuit let’s say, and they give the Come Here suggestion, it’s a no brainer.
Now let’s take that same suggestion when I’m outside off my leash and playing with another dog. We’re chasing each other and having a good old time and some dumb human (no offense, Dad, hehe) yells out, “Come Here!” Not only is this a suggestion, not a command, but it’s a bad suggestion. I’m not going to call time out from my running and chasing to stop and come to Dad or anyone else.
It’s just common sense. There are two forms of stimuli going on. One is the friend I’m playing with and having a good time with. The other is a human who is barking out (maybe the wrong words here) orders with a mean look on their face. Which am I going to obey? I’m going to want to keep on having fun of course. I’m just trying to explain it from my point of view. There is simply little incentive to come to you.
It’s unlikely you have a treat under these circumstances. If you did have a treat I might swing by if it’s close to the other dog that I’m chasing or getting chased by. But a tiny treat does not really amount to much when I’m having this much fun. My level of excitement is much too high for such nonsense. Can I take a rain check on that biscuit?
So what’s the best way to get me to come here? Don’t put me in the position of having that much fun to begin with. If you didn’t want me to run and chase and ignore you, why did you let me off my leash? Letting me off my leash means freedom and I like to take full advantage. Once you realize that tempting me with weak biscuits and “commands” is futile the better off we’ll be.
My suggestion? Next time you want me to come here and I’m doing something a lot more interesting than eating dry biscuits and getting yelled at, wait for me to wear myself out. I’ll get tired after an hour or two and then be your tail-wagging, suggestion-obeying friend again!