Sit Stay at Your Side with Distractions

When you ask your dog to sit and stay in everyday life, he won't always be in a quiet room by himself. You want to teach him to stay in distracting circumstances.

Start with your dog sitting at your side on leash. Don't forget to reward or at least praise him for sitting. Tell him to stay as you give him the stay hand signal. Then bring on the distractions. Start with ones that are not difficult for your dog to resist, then build up to the harder ones. Distractions can be as simple as someone walking in a circle around you and your dog. Harder ones are someone running by, riding a bicycle by, or throwing a ball past you. This is the time to teach your dog to control his instinct to chase things, which often leads dogs into streets where they are killed. A challenging distraction in our classes is Mr. Spider, a windup cat toy that bounces and spins wildly across the room. If you have children, challenge them to come up with distractions. The rules are that they can do anything they want, except call your dog's name and touch him.

An Irish Setter displays good attention during a sit-stay distraction.

If your dog continually gets up, keep sitting him again and again until he stays. There is no need to use more force; just be more stubborn than he is. If you initially have to hold him in place, do it. When he does stay, praise, reward, and release.

Dog Potty Training

Dog Potty Training

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