How many times have you tried to teach your dog or puppy to obey the WAIT command, only to discover that your dog doesn’t want to WAIT?
Why is waiting so hard? Well for dogs, like humans, it is boring and uneventful. The anticipation of what is to come next is often excoriating for a pup. Also, training your dog to WAIT can be very challenging because most dogs are easily distracted. Dogs are also naturally energetic and inattentive. Your dog may have difficulty comprehending the WAIT command because it necessitates inactivity.
Follow these simple steps and you will find a doggie in waiting.
1. Put your dog on a short leash and walk him to the front door.
Using a leash will allow you to control your dog better when he doesn’t respond to the WAIT command at first. It is important to give your dog the SIT command at first. A dog that is in a sitting position will tend to be still a bit longer than if he were standing up. Open the door just enough for you to squeeze through and go outside, leaving your dog on the inside. Now your dog will be one side with you on the other and the leash hanging in between.
2. Slowly open the door just a small amount.
Hold up the palm of your hand in a STOP position and say WAIT! Don’t be disappointed if your dog tries to shove open the door and come rushing toward you! Your dog, not knowing this command, is probably going to scramble to push through the door.
3. Shut the door quickly as soon as your dog starts to move toward you.
This will halt the dog in his tracks. Okay, now repeat step two. Now watch your dog closely. The first time that he doesn’t try to rush through the door may only last a mere second! When your dog finally comprehends the WAIT command and pauses, lavish him with praise and give him a release command (OKAY!) to let him come through the door.
4. Practice, practice, practice!
Practice is really important, like anything, if you don’t practice these steps often your dog will not get good at it so keep repeating the steps described above. Your dog will eventually learn that when he mellows out and WAITS that you will allow him to pass through the front door.
5. Once your dog learns to obey the WAIT command from the SIT position, try teaching him the command while he is standing up.
This is a much harder position for your dog to master the WAIT command from. He is going to want to move around or even SIT. Be consistent with your training and practice this routine at every opportunity. Be sure to give your dog lots of praise and positive reinforcement. Soon, your dog will understand what you want and will easily respond to the WAIT command!
Training your dog to obey the WAIT command takes time, patience and practice. But the end result will be worth it! Eventually, you will be rewarded with a dog that no longer bolts out the door every time you open it!
About the Author
Annie Mochrie is a certified dog trainer by Animal Behavior College. She has worked extensively with surrendered dogs to the shelters through her course work. She is passionate about preventing this cruel practice and because of this, her focus is basic dog training for children. She thinks it is very important to get children involved in every aspect of caring for the family pet. The more we can share the responsibilities of owning a pet with our children the better it is for our beloved pets. Moms and Dads can teach responsibility and feel secure that the children our treating Fido with love and care with proper training techniques.