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After your week of practice on sit stay part one your dog can easily do a sit stay that lasts 1 or 2 seconds.  Now it’s time to increase the amount of time that your dog can hold the stay position.  We are going to work with time increments that make it possible for your dog to continue to succeed.

As you move forward you are going to be tempted to increase the amount of time your dog stays before they are ready.  You will know when you are doing this because your dog will begin to fail.  If you move slowly enough your dog will continue to succeed easily.

Again, grab your treat bag.  It should still contain soft, pea sized treats.  Put your leash on your dog and go to where you want to practice.

  • Lure your dog into a sitting position, do not say sit
  • Say stay and count to 2 then give your dog a treat
  • count to 2 again and give your dog a treat
  • if your dog get’s up at any point in this exercise make a startling noise (not his name or yelling)
  • Say OK and then pet your dog pulling them forward so they will get up instead of continuing to wait for more treats
  • Practice this at least 30 times a day for a week
  • Extend the time between treats by one second each day until your dog begins to fail.  Then go back to the step before the last time your dog was staying successfully.  Practice there for a few days and then begin increasing the length between treats by one second each day.
  • Don’t rush.  It won’t lead to more reliability, it will only lead to stay being more difficult to teach your dog.  You want continuous successes.

If your dog is easier to train for this behavior, you now have 14 seconds between treats.  If not, you’ve gained time between treats.  Pat yourself on the back and then pet your dog.  Continue to increase the time between treats until your dog can hold stay for long enough for your personal preferences.  I recommend five minutes minimum.  It’s long enough for a short conversation with a neighbor and to calm down when they are being crazy.  Continue to practice adding one second at a time until your dog is where you want them to be.  Later, when we are into the more advanced training posts we’ll talk further about getting rid of the treats on this and all the other training we are doing.