Proof Your Way to a Better Stay

Written by Melissa Viera

Proofing is the final step in getting reliable behaviors from your dog. If your dog can stay until released with light distractions the next step is to begin to introduce different types of distractions, and ask your dog to stay in a variety of situations. When introducing distractions it is important to work at a pace that sets your dog up to succeed. Begin slowly and reward your dog for their success instead of asking for too much all at once. Below are some mini challenges for stays. The purpose of these challenges is to teach your dog to stay not only while you are standing directly in front of them, but when you briefly focus your attention on something else. These challenges will also introduce different types of distractions. Proofing can be a lot of fun, and it is a great way to take your training to the next level!

Can your dog stay while you....

Walk to the kitchen?

Open the refrigerator?

Crinkle a wrapper?

Open the front door?

Knock on the door?

Ring the doorbell?

Put a treat on the floor?

Answer the phone?

Have a seat on the sofa?

Wave your arms around?

Jingle your keys?

Put your jacket on?

Step out of sight?

Shuffle your feet?

Put your shoes on?

Have a snack?

Wash your hands?

Jump around? 

These challenges are just to get you started. What other creative ways have you come up with to proof stays or other behaviors? Share your proofing ideas in the comments below!

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