Teaching Your Dog to Wait

Dogs, like most animals, live life in the moment and don’t usually like to wait on anything. But when they live with us humans, there are times when it’s necessary for them to wait on something, so the “wait” command is a great tool. It could even work to save your dog’s life in some situations.

Not the Same as the “Stay” Command

You may think that it is the same as the “stay” command, but it really isn’t. The difference is that with the “stay” command, your dog isn’t allowed to move, but with the “wait” command he only has to stay put and can wiggle around if necessary as long as he doesn’t move from the spot. It tells your dog that he can’t move forwards until you say he can.

Helps Teach Manners

The “wait” command is great for teaching your dog manners. For instance, when you are getting ready to feed him, if he knows to wait, then he won’t be trying to jump all over you while you are getting it ready. Just say, “Wait” and in a few seconds, you can set it down and then say something like, “OK!” and he will know he can eat.

The “wait” command is also useful for guardians whose pet always tries to charge through the door ahead of him and nearly trips him every time. If you get him to master the “wait” command, then you won’t have to worry about falling on your face!

Patience and Persistence Wins Out

While teaching your dog to “wait” be sure to keep the training sessions between five and 15 minutes so as not to tire out your pet or get him frustrated. Dog’s attention span doesn’t last long. Just practice getting him to wait for a few minutes each day and he should catch on fairly quickly.

Start Training

Basically, the way you teach a dog to “wait” is to put him in a situation where you would need for him to wait, like to say hello to a visitor. If your dog tends to want to jump up on people, the “wait” command can help tremendously. Have a friend come to the door and when he comes in, make your dog sit and then tell him to “wait.” After a few seconds, say “OK!” and let him greet your friend. You can repeat this exercise a few times until he realizes that he’s not supposed to greet your friend until you release him to do so.

You need to have some patience when teaching the “wait” command because dogs are easily distracted and it can take some patience on your part to get him to master the “wait” command. You should always give lavish praise and perhaps a treat when he does the command properly.

Good As A Safety Tool

The “wait” command is somewhat like an informal version of the “stay” command. It lets your dog know he will be able to have what he wants, like his food, toy, etc, as soon as you say it’s ok. It’s great as a safety measure in situations like when your dog is getting out of the car, as you want him to wait so he won’t rush out and possibly get run over.

Making Your Dog A Good Citizen

The “wait” command also helps make your dog a good citizen of your family and makes him a better-behaved dog. Your friends will be pleasantly surprised when you tell him to “wait” and they don’t get jumped on, or you tell him to “wait” and he pauses before you go through the door.

The bottom line is that teaching your pet the “wait” command has several benefits for both you and your dog and you will be glad you taught it to him.


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