Let’s Wait with Send Away

We are going to combine three of the games you taught to your puppy over the first four weeks of this course.

The First objective is to test that your puppy has understood some of the previous games whilst working in the “Wait” command. This time you will be “Sending Away” your puppy to the mat and asking your puppy to wait there. This contrasts with you moving away from your puppy.

This is also often a missing link in many training plans to teach a puppy to “Wait”. Puppies are often not comfortable to be separated from us, yet we ask them to wait. This game is helping your puppy to be more confident when it is a little distance away from you as it is the puppy’s decision to move away.

For this game, you need to have achieved the following first:

  • Your puppy should be able to sit on command.
  • You puppy should be able to go to its mat on command from a small distance (even just half a meter) – remember start small, make it a success.
  • You have started to work on “Wait”.

Now you are going to send your puppy to his mat, to ask it to “Sit” then to “Wait” and then you are going to return to your puppy:

  1. Locate yourself at a distance from the mat. This distance should only be as far as you know your puppy will be comfortable to go to the mat or raised bed.
  2. Ask your puppy to go to its mat.
  3. Once your puppy is on its mat, ask your puppy to sit. Do not use its name as you have been working on teaching your puppy to come to you when called.
  4. Ask your puppy to “Wait”.
  5. Slowly go back to your puppy.
  6. Click and Reward.
  7. Give the release command to stop the game.

You are now doing what we call “chaining behaviours”.  You are adding a chain of three behaviours that your puppy has learnt independently before rewarding your puppy.  It is magic, you are now starting to ask your puppy for more complex tasks, and it is still all part of a game. Well-done!

If you puppy is good at this game, you can

  • slowly increase the distance between you and the mat
  • slowly increase how long you make you puppy wait before going back to your puppy