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“Stop the dog” is a very important exercise to teach your dog and can potentially save your dog’s life.  For example, if your dog ran across a busy road you would not want to recall it back, but you would want to stop it there until you could go and make it safe. Also, if you have a dog that has chasing behaviours, you could stop your dog mid chase before he has any chance to cause damage to cyclists, cars, or other dogs etc.

You will need two people to teach this exercise and can use food treats or a toy whichever motivates your dog the most.

Stage One

  • The Handler stands still with the dog at their side. 

  • The Handler then gets the dog’s attention with a toy/treat and says the word “STOP”.

  • Immediately after saying the word “STOP” they throw the toy/treat towards the Instructor who should be about six feet away.

  • The Handler should prevent their dog from going forward.

  • The Instructor will throw the toy/treat back to the dog over its head.

  • (Repeat as many times as necessary until the dog does not want to move forward of its own accord).

Stage Two

  • The Instructor now has the toy/treat and gets the dog’s attention with it.

  • He will make a large swooping action up in the air (pretending to throw the toy/treat) and says the word “STOP”.

  • The dog should remain still beside the Handler and be looking at the toy/treat.

  • The Instructor will then throw the toy/treat back to the dog over its head.

Stage Three

  • The Handler will walk towards the Instructor with the dog at his side.

  • At the same time the Instructor will be walking backwards away from the Handler.

  • The Instructor will say the word “STOP”, at the same time making the large swooping upward arm action pretending to throw the toy/treat to the dog.

  • The instructor then throws the toy/treat to the dog.     

Stage Four

  • The Handler remains still while the Instructor calls the dog forward and then says the word “STOP”.

  • The Instructor pretends to throw the toy/treat with the large swooping upward arm action.

  • The dog should have now stopped half way between the Handler and Instructor.

  • The Instructor now throws the toy/treat to the dog.

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