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If you tell your dog to ‘stay‘ then go out of their site, what will they do? Will they stay like you asked, follow you, or simply get bored and go find something better to do? If you wanna teach your dog to stay even when they can’t see you, this is the blog-post for you!
In order to teach your dog to ‘stay‘ even when you leave, they have to be completely polished on ‘stay’ already. If they haven’t mastered it yet, click here.
Benefits of training your dog to stay even if you leave the room
The exercise of making your dog comply with you even when you leave is no easy task. It is, however, extremely impressive! Having your dog realize that even though you’re not around, somehow you know everything they’re up to, will blow their minds! And, if done properly, it’ll result in making your dog more obedient with all commands, not just stay.
Exercise your dog
Always, before you start a training session with your dog, exercise them. Get their extra energy out. It’s really tough to train a dog when they have pent up energy. So take them for a run or to a dog park and get those beans out! You’ll have a much more focused dog if they burn off that boundless energy first.
To start, take your dog to a quiet, comfortable room in your house. Put them in a down-stay. Then leave the room for 5-10 seconds. Watch through a crack in the door, or anywhere you can see them but they can’t see you. If they show any sign of getting up, run back into the room and firmly but calmly put them back into a ‘down-stay‘. Then abruptly leave and try again. If you’ve taught your dog ‘stay‘ properly already, this shouldn’t be a problem for them to accomplish. But remember, when training your dog you have to always set them up for success. That’s why you’re only leaving them for 5-10 seconds to start. Practice this over the course of a day or two in repetitions of 4-6 times and always end with your dog going it right so you can praise them!
As they improve, increase the time you leave them until you reach a full 10 minutes. Each time you come back and your dog has done well, release them then offer lots of praise. Gradual progress is the key. Be patient and don’t rush your dog! It’s up to you to set them up for success.
Switch rooms in the house
Now start from the beginning again but in different rooms in your house. Once they master that, add distractions. Have a friend or family member go into the room and sit down. Then have them leave. All the while your dog must hold their position. If they don’t, just like before, go back into the room, tell them ‘ah’, put them back in to the position and start over.
Take the lesson outside
It might be harder for a dog to ‘down-stay‘ outside at first simply due to the fact that they’ll feel vulnerable. So start outside with a ‘sit-stay‘. But remember that sitting for a dog can get uncomfortable after a while, so pay attention to that as well. Also, be careful where you put your dog. If it’s a hot summer day, obviously you won’t make your dog sit in direct sunlight or anywhere it’s too hot for them. Pay attention to the elements you’re putting them in. Humanity always comes first!
Put your dog on a leash and tie the leash to a post or a tree. Direct your dog to ‘sit-stay’, then go out of site. Find a crack somewhere so you can still see them. Repeat the same procedure as you did inside. 5 seconds to start then as they progress gradually increase the time. As the get better try without the leash. And same thing, start from scratch.
Keys for success
With practice, patience and slow progress you’ll be able to tell your dog to stay anywhere and in any position. Just remember these things:
-always set your dog up for success
-practice a few times a day, everyday, for short periods of time
-pay attention to your dogs comfort level
-make sure all your dogs needs are met so they won’t get distracted (they’re exercised, fed, had water, gone to the bathroom etc)
Please comment and let me know how your training went, and subscribe to Askthedogexpert: