Teaching Stay – Part 2

Mick and I have practiced the stay command 2-3 times a day. I no longer need to stand in front of him to remind him of what I mean when I tell him, “Stay”. I move slowly as I walk about 4-5 feet away. I don’t stand there any longer than he can take just sitting and waiting. He’s only a kid, after all. With more practice and maturity we’ll work up to longer durations. The business of walking back to Mick, slowly, and then around behind him to take up my position on his right side is important. A dog needs to understand that his leader should be able to move around – and still remember the command, which you never repeat. You and your dog can get there slowly. To keep the excitement out of this event I move slowly and quietly. No surprises. If I were to get excited (standard procedure when telling a dog to come) he may lose his focus and break the stay. A dog can learn to sit-stay, down-stay, and stand-stay. Each of these is useful in managing a dog. Reinforce your dog for every baby step. After you give the treat, don’t forget the kind word and, most important, the hug and kiss.