Jump to section
Having your dog wait is just a refined practice of patience. Most waiting moments such as waiting for you to finish preparing a meal or waiting for you to open a door might require your dog to be sitting so he is in control and not jumping around. However, there are times you might want your dog to stand in place and wait. This might require additional training, so your dog does not sit while waiting. 'Stand and wait' is an effective command for visiting the veterinarian or even your dog groomer. Teaching your dog to stand still and wait patiently occurs when you need your dog in a standing and stay position for a long period.
To teach your dog to stand and stay, he should already understand the basic commands of 'sit' and 'down' and 'stay'. Stand and stay shows patience in a standing position. To begin, you will need to teach your dog to stand from any position. Some dog owners will use the command “stand,” teaching the dog when he is told to stand he is also to be still and patient.
As with other training, be sure to have treats readily available for your dog so you can reward him for positive behaviors. You may want to also have a leash or harness on your dog so you can help maneuver him into the position you would like him to be in. If your dog hesitates when you give a command such 'sit', 'down', or 'stay', work on those commands before you teach 'stand and stay'.
The Treat Lure Method
Sit or down
With your dog in a 'sit' or 'down' position, lure him with a treat in front of his nose. Bring the treat away from his nose and up. Your dog should follow the treat and stand.
Once he stands, reward him with the treat. If he does not stand immediately, try again with the treat in front of his nose.
Repeat these steps rewarding him each time he stands. Once he has this mastered, try to lure without a treat using an empty hand to guide him up. If he follows your empty hand to a standing position, reward him with a treat from your other hand.
Practice this several times always rewarding from the opposite hand and not the one you are using to lure him up. After a few practice times standing without a treat, add the command, “stand,” and lure the dog up with an empty hand.
As soon as your dog is up, reward him with a treat. After several sessions, you can drop the hand luring motion and simply use the command to 'stand'. Be sure to reward your dog each time he stands. This puts him in a position to stand and be patient.
The Clicker Training Method
Put your dog into a basic command position such as 'sit' or 'down'. Click and offer him a treat.
From that position, take a second treat and lure him upward, moving the treat away from his nose. While luring him, give the command, “stand.”
Click and Treat
Once he is in position, click and give him a treat.
Stay and wait
Count to three, keeping him in the stand and stay position. After you count, click and treat.
Repeat these steps from a sitting or down position. Be sure to reward him with a click and treat each step.
Practice this command several times a day for several weeks. Use this command with the same click and treat method in different situations such as the groomer or at the vet’s office to train your dog when and why he will need to know the command.
The On Leash Method
Starting in your home or in your backyard, begin a small walk with your dog on a leash. Take a few steps with him. Stop. Face your dog.
With your palm out facing your dog, put your hand up and say the command “wait” while blocking his path forward.
Once your dog stops walking, give him a treat.
Wait another few seconds and give your dog a release command such as “release.”
Wait a few seconds and move a few more steps.
Repeat the above steps until your dog is used to the command and stopping and staying still when you ask him to wait. Once he has this down, take a step away from him once you ask your dog to wait. After a few seconds, release him with the release command and give him a treat.
Practice this with your dog for several weeks before taking him off leash. Each training session, be sure to reward your dog for positive behaviors. With each session, walk farther away from your dog, reward for waiting, and then release him.
By Stephanie Plummer
Published: 02/02/2018, edited: 01/08/2021
More articles by Stephanie Plummer