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Teaching Your Dog the Emergency Stop Command

All dogs should learn to stand still. This is a valuable command in many situations, e.g., if you have guests and do not want your dog to jump on them or if you are carrying something heavy, your four-legged friend must stand aside. It takes time, but you can easily teach your dog to stand still with perseverance and commitment.

It takes time, but with perseverance and commitment, you can easily teach your dog to sit still.

Dog emergency stop training. Very often, it can happen to meet free dogs in parks (dedicated or not to dog walking) that do not return to the owner’s call, especially if faced with an emergency. For example, when faced with children or people who may be afraid of large dogs or with the presence of small dogs who are fearful of large dogs.

Emergency stopping is an exercise that should be taught to any dog and is relatively easy to introduce. It is only fitting that an owner should be able to exercise his four-legged friend safely and that our dog, too, should be able to enjoy his exercise in complete freedom. However, an emergency stop signal is also necessary whenever Fido is about to turn a corner and temporarily disappear from the owner’s sight.

How to Start

Here is how to start the emergency stop exercise. It is imperative to have the proper foundation for this type of work.

Here are the step-by-step instructions on how to proceed.

  1. Drop 3 or 4 treats on the ground to keep Fido amused and interested. We do this to give you some time so you can take a few steps away from Fido.
  2. While the dog is looking for his treats on the ground, we take a few steps backwards (five or six steps are sufficient), just far enough to create some distance between us.
  3. With a treat ready in hand, as soon as Fido has finished eating the kibble from the ground and lifts his head, we must raise the hand holding the charm above our head (like a traffic warden signalling a stop sign to a car) and say the word “STOP“.
  4. At this point, we have to count to one and throw the reward over the dog’s head so it lands behind his back.
  5. Fido will be forced to turn around to go in search of the treat but, at the same time, will remain in that area.

Visual and verbal

When we say ‘STOP‘, the signal must be an excellent clear hand signal because there will be times when the dog may be some distance away from us. Therefore, the addition of a visual signal would be a real advantage. In addition, it is good to remember that a verbal cue would be very different at a distance of five or 50 metres. Whereas an arm above our head always remains only one above our head, even at a distance of several metres.

Our arm must be raised in the air, above our head (like a traffic warden with his arm raised), because it shows the dog an unmistakable, always recognisable silhouette. If, on the other hand, we hold our arm as if it were stretched out in front of us, then the signal may get lost in the rest of the contours of our body, especially at a distance.

The movement of our arm must be divided into two parts like a dart player throwing a dart. First, we give the command “STOP” verbally and by raising our arms, and then we throw the dart towards the dog. The reason for separating the process into two cues is that we want to condition the first step (when we say “STOP”) to predict that the reward will come on the se-quarter cue, i.e. “stop” followed by rewards and not at the same time.

Learn which rewards your dog appreciates the most.
Schedule short training sessions, and they should last only a few minutes and be evenly distributed throughout the week.

The reward must end behind Fido’s hindquarters as we want him to freeze in place in “wait” when we say the command. If the food were thrown in front of the dog, we would inadvertently reward him for advancing towards us rather than staying in place.

With plenty of practice, when Fido sees our arm in the air and hears the command “STOP“, he will stay in place, waiting for the reward. At first, using this training protocol, when we say the word “STOP”, it will simply mean to the dog that a treat is coming and will fall behind his bottom, that’s all.

In the early stages of practice, we do not need to focus on whether the dog is moving when we say the command. We are conditioning the word for now, not the behaviour. Gradually, with time, the dog will stay still in position more and more and thus associate the dish with the stopping behaviour.

Tip

Initially, it is best to use pre-mixtures that are large enough to facilitate both our throwing and our dog’s retrieving.

Adding distance

Once our dog stops immediately at the sound of the “STOP” command, we can increase the distance between us and him. Then, you can also start practising in different places and add some time between the dog’s stopping following the command and the delivery of the reward.

This type of training puts the brakes on the dog when faced with emergencies so that we owners have time to reach him and put him on a leash if necessary. If you have any problems with introducing the command stop, don’t hesitate to contact a reputable trainer who can guide you better.

Thank you for reading the article to the end. Your reading contribution was significant to us.

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The "Frenchie Breed" website is a blog aimed at dog owners. We regularly publish articles about our four-legged furry friends. Among the contents of our blog, you will find ample space on the latest news in the sector, with information and in-depth analysis dedicated to the world of dogs in all its forms, the latest trends and news of the moment, curious facts, events devoted to dogs, product reviews, as well as an intense activity of information regarding the health and well-being of pets.

Please Note: The articles in the 'Frenchie Breed Blog' are for information purposes only; nothing published can or should be construed as an attempt to offer professional advice or consultation with a physician, veterinary surgeon or another health professional.

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Written by Frenchie Breed

The "Frenchie Breed" website is a blog aimed at dog owners. We regularly publish articles about our four-legged furry friends. Among the contents of our blog, you will find ample space on the latest news in the sector, with information and in-depth analysis dedicated to the world of dogs in all its forms, the latest trends and news of the moment, curious facts, events devoted to dogs, product reviews, as well as an intense activity of information regarding the health and well-being of pets.

Please Note: The articles in the 'Frenchie Breed Blog' are for information purposes only; nothing published can or should be construed as an attempt to offer professional advice or consultation with a physician, veterinary surgeon or another health professional.

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