Recall [come when called]
It's easy to teach a dog to come to you. The trick is getting them to come when called NO MATTER WHAT.
Relationship based dog training philosophy
This will go much easier if you have a pocket full of delicious treats and a partner, and you are in an area with few distractions.
1. With your dog on a leash (or a long-line if you have one), have him Sit by your partner. Your partner's job is to make sure he stays in the Sit until you are ready to call him.
2. Walk about 10' away from your dog, then turn to face him.
3. Kneel down on the ground and sit up straight or lean backward slightly. (some dogs will not come to you if you lean forward)
4. Hold a yummy treat between your knees, make eye contact with your dog (to be sure you have his attention), and say ", Come!".
5. Give him all the encouragement he needs to get to you. Smile and excitedly ask him to hurry!
6. If he comes to you, put a hand in his collar (to keep him from running off), give him the yummy treat, and praise him like he is a superstar.
7. If he veers off, have your partner grab the leash and help him get to you by gently "steering" him from behind.
8. When he gets to you, give him the treat and praise him.
9. Release him with your release command (ie "Free Dog").
IMPORTANT! Work in a fenced-in area while teaching the recall to keep your dog safe, just in case it takes him a few tries to get it.
Avoid Losing Your Recall
Never use your Recall command for something unpleasant to the dog. If you have to do something your dog isn't going to like, such as give him a bath or a pill, go get him. Don't call him to you. Coming when called should always result in something pleasant. Be generous with the praise and treats for Recalls. Remember, this command could save your dog's life.
Want to know more? Try Dog Training For Dummies by Jack & Wendy Volhard. Better yet, enroll your dog in an obedience class!