What is it?
Standing on the leash cues your dog to lie down and stay until “released.”
What’s a release?
A release is a signal to your dog that the stay is finished and he can do what he pleases. We recommend a word and a touch used together. Choose a release word that you don’t normally use in your everyday conversation, such as “free.” That way, you won’t risk releasing your dog from a stay in casual conversation.
Why include a touch as a signal?
One of the benefits of a long stay is its relaxing effects. Your dog will be more likely to relax instead of closely monitor you, once realizing that the release is imminent only when you return to their side. To add your touch release, lightly tap your dog under the chin after saying the release word.
Why teach this if my dog already responds to hand signals/verbal cues to lie down?
Think of standing on the leash as an additional, more emphatic cue for lying down and staying. You will appreciate it during those times when your dog is too excited to pay attention to your hand signals.
When can I teach the word Down?
Once your dog understands and easily complies with downward leash pressure by lying down and staying, teach the cue, Down, by saying it (once) right before standing on the leash.
When do I teach the word Stay?
It’s not necessary to add the cue for stay. Standing on the leash signifies to lie down until released.
Safety: A Bonus!
Once your dog responds to leash pressure by calming lying down, he is less likely to panic/strangle in an accidental entanglement.
How to do it
Stand on the leash so that your dog is mildly uncomfortable in a standing position. When your dog lies down, take your foot off of the leash immediately.
Take your foot off the leash as soon as your dog begins to lie down. Pressure off is the “treat.”
When first starting
Avoid making the leash too tight when first introducing your dog to the concept. The point is not to panic your dog!
Stand in such a way that your dog can’t wrap the leash around your legs as you stand there.
Once your dog lies down, immediately remove all leash pressure. Remember, the reward for lying down is immediate removal of pressure.
Your dog is most likely to lie down when calm. For quicker initial results, practice when your dog is tired.
Avoid uncomfortable surfaces, such as cold floors, when first teaching.
Challenge your dog by making it slightly more difficult every time you train.