One of the most useful exercises that we can teach our dog is to stay still in any circumstance in which we indicate it; this learning will be beneficial in various situations of daily life, it can even be decisive if the dog escapes us by the street.
Practice first at home to keep your dog quiet to order
Until the dog progresses in this exercise, you must start practicing at home, for his own safety. The first thing is to choose the order that you are going to give it always: `quiet´,` high´ `for,´` stay ´ or any word you decide, but always the same.
To teach your dog to sit still to order, you can use the doors of your house to help. With the door closed and your dog in sight, open the door and give it the command to ‘stand still,’ at first your dog will want to go through the door instantly, block his path with your body and give him the order again, repeat until the dog remains still, waiting to pass. At that moment, you give him the order of ‘release’ or end of the exercise: ‘come on,’ ‘go ahead,’ or whichever you choose. You can also practice near his toy basket, next to the sofa, at the foot of a ladder, in the kitchen or at the exit door to the terrace or portal, anywhere the dog wants to go, and you decide to stay still first.
Verbal commands can be accompanied by hand prompts, so many dogs learn to stay still with just a simple hand gesture from their owner.
Increase the amount of time the dog must stay still on command At first, just holding still for a few seconds will be enough to say ‘come on!’, So you understand the purpose of the exercise. Little by little, we will increase the time that the dog must remain still waiting, and whenever it does well, we will reward with prizes or petting.
A long leash helps you teach your dog to stay still when you practice on the street.
When we go out to the street to practice this exercise, the dog must always remain on its leash to control it and prevent it from running away; Taking advantage of the length of the leash, we can move further and further away from the dog while he remains still.
We will practice without a leash only when we are sure that you have fully learned the exercise and preferably indoors.
Finally, practice the exercise of `quiet ‘with distractions.
When you fully trust that your dog has perfectly learned this exercise, it is time to start practicing it in places where there are distractions for the dog: the street, the door of an establishment of the park, places where there are movement, noise and bustle and where the dog has to focus on being still without being distracted by anything.
It is normal that on the first occasions, he gets up to the least distraction that arises, but little by little, you have to get him to stay still as long as possible until finally, he only gets up to order and the environment does not influence him.
It is very useful to practice giving the order to stop before crossing a zebra crossing or a traffic light since, in this situation, they usually learn it quickly.