Has this ever happened to you? You step outside your front door just to get the mail but your dog goes tearing past you, bounding out of the house and into the street.
How about this? Someone comes to your house for a visit and as soon as the door is opened, your dog sneaks by and next thing you know he's roaming the entire neighborhood like he owns it.
|Icy and Phoebe know to wait calmly for us to put their leashes on or to go through any doors.|
The most effective way for us to ensure our two dogs don't door dash has been to teach them the "Wait" command. Every time my dogs go through any doorway, they know to wait for our command before they proceed.
|Icy and Phoebe wait at the back door before going out into the yard.|
|The dogs wait outside the back door to come back in after their potty break|
If you've never taught your dogs the Wait command, try this:
- Start inside the house. Put your dog's leash on just outside a CLOSED bedroom or other inside door your dog uses often. Tell him to Sit and Stay at the door.
- Staying in front of your dog, put your hand on the door to open it. Your dog may stand up or try to get ahead of you in anticipation of the door opening. Give a firm "Ah! Ah!, Wait!" and make him sit back down. Keep your hand on the door until he settles and looks at you for direction.
- Slowly begin to open the door. As he tries to move forward, as he likely will, give him another firm "Ah! Ah!, Wait!" and close the door again. Keep doing this until he gets the idea that unless he remains in a sit position and waits for you to lead him through the door, you will continue to close it.
- You'll probably need to do this a bunch of times before your dog gets it. It may seem confusing to him. How come suddenly Mom or Dad isn't letting me go in that room?? Eventually, he should get it.
Once your dog get's it, perform the exercises on other doors over the next couple of days. The garage door, the car doors, the backyard door, and so on. He'll eventually learn that he needs to check in with you before he's allowed to go through a door. However, if you can't seem to teach the Wait command successfully, get some hands on help from a professional dog trainer.
Has your dog ever door dashed? How do you prevent your dog from dashing out into the street or other dangerous situation? We love to hear from you, please leave us a comment and share your thoughts with us!