By teaching your Golden to sit and to lie down, you taught him to move into those positions and to hold still until you released him.
The stay command builds on those exercises by teaching your dog to continue to hold still for gradually increasing times as you move away from him. Eventually your Golden will be able to hold the sit or down stay for several minutes.
Begin by having your Golden sit. With the leash in your left hand, use the leash to put a slight bit of pressure backwards as you tell him, “Spot, stay.” At the same time, use your right hand to give your dog a signal that will mean stay. This signal can be an open hand gesture with the palm towards your dog’s face. Take one step away and at the same time, release the pressure on the leash.
If your Golden moves toward you, gets up or lies down, tell him “No” (so that he understands he has made a mistake) and put him back into position. Repeat the exercise. After a few seconds – and a few seconds only – step back to your dog and praise him. Don’t let him move from the position until you give him the release command.
Please note: This article is part of a collection of dog-related content that we purchased the rights to. Opinions expressed may or may not agree with those espoused by Master Dog Trainer Adam G. Katz. When in doubt, please refer to the advice given in Adam’s dog training book. This article is provided for your enjoyment, only. It’s relevance to real world working dog training may be limited.