Does your dog do a long sit or a long down, where you tell the dog to sit or to go down, and then you say stay and disappear for a short while?
Our Rottweiler Lola has gotten much better at the long sit in the past couple of months. It’s been a long winter here in Colorado, and our dogs are a bit fatter and lazier for it. We walk them twice a day in all weather short of a major blizzard, but they haven’t chosen to spend so much time outside in the fenced yard. Nope, they have just been lounging around while Kelly and I have been writing a lot on our computers.
One day, inspiration struck and I invented a game. It’s called Lola, Where’s Your Toy?
We happened to have one of these Kong dental toys in the house. (Click on the image to go to it at Amazon.) I crammed a few pieces of dry dog food into the toy, told Lola to sit, and went down the hall to our bedroom, where I put the toy behind the door.
I went back to the kitchen, where I was pleased to see Lola was still sitting, and I said “okay” so she could stop sitting and then I added in an excited tone, “Lola, where’s your toy?”
She figured that meant something fun, but of course the first time she didn’t know what. So I ran down to the toy, and she ran too and found it.
After about three repetitions, she had the general idea, and now she is a master of the game. There are not a lot of places to hide a toy in our small house, but if she is in the kitchen, she can’t see if I go down the hall and into the bedroom, the laundry room, or my husband’s office. I often go into all three, to put the scent in them, before putting the toy down. Now she finds it in a flash!
Try something like this! It has made me more interesting to Lola. She keeps an eye on me, just in case… and her long sit is way better!
From the 2011 blog