Why You Should Stop Telling Your Dog "Stay"
1. Firstly, let's get this straight. Dogs don't come into the world speaking English.
That's like me telling you to "bugaboo" and thinking you know exactly what it means. In fact it's a nonsense word. Which is the same exact thing a dog who does not have a grasp of the English language thinks about the word "stay". It's a nonsense word.
2. Let me ask you a question? How many times have you said "stay" to your dog, only to get maybe a second of holding an actual stay?
If you're like a lot of dog owners, you are constantly repeating yourself. Constantly. To no avail. Yet you keep hoping that at some point it will sink in.
3. Stay holds zero meaning for your dog.
Here's why. Dog's think and learn in pictures. When you name something consistently in their mind, they've got it. Again, their definition of the English language did not get taught to them the way it did to humans. So honestly, when you tell your dog "stay" and she gets up and after a couple of seconds and runs around and you start in with, "No, stay, I said stay" your dog has no idea what it means. In fact, you've repeated this scenario so many times your dog is certain "Stay, no stay, I said stay" means to sit for a couple seconds then get up and run around.
4. Demonstration over Explanation
You can try to explain stay all you want to your dog, but I've got news... Your dog doesn't understand logic. They understand demonstration. Then you name it. Simple break down. Don't try to explain to your dog what to do. Show your dog what to do, then name it.
5. Sit is Stay
My clients think I'm brilliant on this one. I'm simply just thinking like a dog.
Tell your dog to sit. Pretty basic. Probably the most practiced action item in "dog training". It's simple. It's stationary. It's do-able. It's rewardable.
The moment your dog even thinks about getting up, you tell her "sit".
Fundamental at it's core.
You keep doing this until you want to release your dog to something else.
You just trained stay.
6. When training your dog to be solid in a new skill, don't say the word until they do it
This is the hardest thing for the logistical human. You think your dog should figure out complex problems.
Your dog has zero interest or capability in complex problems.
You dog does like to please you, for the most part however.
So here's the deal on stay....
7. Sit is Stay
Keep your dog in a sit for extended periods of time. Reward.
The longer your dog can hold a sit, the better at stay you dog will be.
Example: You tell your dog sit.
He starts to get up and you tell him sit.
He holds that sit longer. It's an action. Stay by the way isn't a physical action, it's an idea to your dog. Your dog can't figure out ideas....
You go back to "sit" every time your dog even thinks about getting up. *action easy to demonstrate versus explain
Your dog starts holding extended "sit".
Then and only then you can name it stay! 💡
Demonstration over explanation wins every time with a dog.
*Bonus: it works with people too!
8. Calming the Chaos
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