If teaching a dog how to sit on command is easy for you, you may find it difficult to train your dog how to stay. Even experienced dog trainers are challenged by this. It is quite difficult to master this obedience training but when your dog finally learns how to stay on command, all the hard work becomes worth it.
Instances when it is useful for your dog to stay at command:
- It would be easier to control your dog in public places or even inside the house.
- Your dog won’t jump at people.
- A dog that can follow the command can join dog competitions. We mentioned that it is a challenging command to master. That is why it is quite remarkable when a dog learns to stay at one place until the owner or trainer tells it to move otherwise.
- You can teach your dogs other tricks and it would seem easy.
Remember, the main objective is to make your dog actually stay at one place until you allow your dog to move or run to you.
Here are some steps to follow so you can stop wondering on how to train my dog to stay.
- Get and maintain your dog’s attention
The very first step to obedience training is to get your dog’s attention and make sure that it is willing to learn. So you should train your dog in a place without the things that can distract your dog during the training session.
- Put your dog on a leash and make it sit next to you.
This would make the training easier. You would be able to control your dog’s movement through the leash whenever it tries to move or follow you.
- Place your palm flat on your dog’s muzzle together with the command, “stay.”
This will be your hand gesture every time you make the command. Your dog will associate this gesture and immediately understand hat you want him to do. Also, be clear with your words. Say “stay” firmly every time.
- Now, try to walk away.
This comes with the hand gesture and the command. When you first step in front of your dog, do the gesture and command, then try to walk away. If your dog tries to follow you, do the same hand gesture and command until he stays exactly in his place.
- Reward, reward, reward!
Every time your dog follows and actually stays, do not be stingy with treats and praises. Doing so will encourage your dog to keep following your command. It should almost be instantaneous every time your dog obeys.
- Do not get mad or impatient if your dog moves.
It is easy to get impatient when teaching this command. So every time your dog moves, say “uh uh go back” or other phrases, followed by the same gesture and command. Do this repeatedly until your dog stays. Then give your dog a treat or a pat with praises for a job well done.
- Practice regularly.
Make sure to practice regularly at different locations. Of course, as we have mentioned, practice when your dog is in a state of willingness to learn. Keep your first training sessions short and gradually increase the time until you are confident enough that your dog finally learned the command.
- Have a release word.
You can’t expect your dog to know that you are allowing it to move by simply clapping, can you? A release word can be “ok, move” or something similar. Do this after rewarding your dog with treats and praises. When your dog is now able to stay on command and move on command after saying the release word, you would finally stop wondering “how to train my dog to stay!”
It may be challenging the first few tries but with practice, your dog will eventually get it. Stay is an important obedience training that every pet parent should teach their dog. This command is equally hard for all dog breeds. Do not lose hope if your cute Shih Tzu puppy is having a hard time while your German shepherd was able to learn it. It still depends on the dog’s mood, as well as your training methods.
If you watch videos online or participate in dog obedience classes in your neighborhood, it is all the same. You will realize that it is really up to the trainer and not the dog.
Do not punish and stick with positive reinforcements. Be firm when you train and be consistent. Your patience will go a long way and eventually pays off in the end when your dog stays on command.
You can be proud of yourself and your dog and not having to ask yourself, “how to train my dog to stay”? You can now freely play in the park knowing that your dog will stay when you command it to, as well as join competitions. It is not simple but it is worth it.