Q. How do I get my dog to STAY? She follows me when I leave the house and I'm afraid she will dart out the door and run away.
A. STAY is an important command to teach your dog, perhaps even more crucial to her safety than SIT. By teaching STAY, you can create boundaries for your dog to respect.
The first boundary should be the door. When you - or guests - enter or exit the door, your dog must STAY at a designated spot well away from the doorway.
6 Steps to Teaching Your Dog to STAY
1. Ask your dog to SIT.
2. Show your dog the palm of your hand, like a stop sign, and say the word STAY once. DO NOT REPEAT THE WORD! Count to three.
3. Use a word like FREE or OKAY or AT EASE so your dog knows the excruciating STAY part is blessedly over.
4. Praise your brilliant dog with a high voice. Watch his ears perk up as he basks in the glow of his accomplishment.
5. Repeat the above, but take one step backward after you say STAY. Did that go well? If so, attempt #6.
6. Repeat, taking two steps backward.
If your dog gets up before you are ready, don't get mad. You just went too fast for your dog.
Go back to the beginning, refresh everyone's memory, and help your dog - and you - be successful.
Do this again tomorrow, and the next day, too.
Do this in different rooms of the house.
Now, every time you leave the house, be sure your dog doesn't follow you. Display your stop sign hand and invoke the magic word STAY.