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Sit & Stay

Dog Trainer Basil Theofanides teaches some young dogs how to sit and stay. His methodology includes owner awareness of the benefits of “stay", teaching a dog the “stay" command and regular practice of “stay" techniques learned.

G'day guys welcome to our training session today and it is a sit, stay we are going to teach our dogs. So lets start with a basic stay.

"So can I just ask you where could you use a stay in real life?"

"A road."

"Great, crossing the road, great, so crossing the road is a great idea. What else?"

"If you're at your house opening the front door or someone has arrived."

"So tell your dog to stay. Have you used that before?"


"Okay, excellent. And Robyn?"

"We have stairs so we keep him to stay at the top so that someone goes down before him. Say 'stay' at the top of the stairs until someone goes down. "

"Great example Robyn. So these are all great ideas where you can use this exercise. The thing is it’s important that you don’t do too much too soon. I see a lot of people all the time saying ‘watch my dog, he’s very clever, he'll stay just check it out.’ They’ll say ‘stay’, they walk off and as they’re walking along back to the dog they turn around , ‘where’s my dog?’ It’s right at their feet and so the whole thing is you’ve got to start in baby steps. So we are going to start in baby steps and we've got to do it on leash.

There are many ways you can teach a dog to stay, this is called just simply guidance method. Lets give it a shot now as group. I’ve got my dog here today, I’m not sure what his name is but he’s very compliant. I think we will just call him Fido for this exercise. So I just want you to sit your dogs next to you on your left side and you simply say the command ‘stay’ but it's got to be given in a firm voice. So can I just get you guys to say it with me. 1, 2, 3 stay!”


"Excellent so its got to be nice and firm because that way the dog starts to pay attention. None of this 'stay, stay...stay!' So you just do a short step to your right don’t step on Brutas there. Keep your arm above the dog’s head because that way what you can do if he moves is pull up and say "uh-uh", correct him, go back, make him sit. Then you do one step to the rear. Just say 'stay' one quick step to the rear, return back, you pause maybe half a second, 'good boy', praise again in that happy voice, then you say 'stay' and this time you step in front of your dog and face the dog. If they get up, anticipate now return back, pause about half a second again and then release your dog with the command 'finish!" in a happy voice, that’s the release command. Can we all say that now?”


“Come on guys a bit more enthusiasm ‘finish’, go!


"Yes! I think top of the class was Gene! That’s the release command and then the dog knows that’s the end of the exercise and he can relax.”

“Alright Sydney you ready to go? Alright lets give it a shot. Alright now hang on - sausage dog?”

“She is a sausage dog.”

“Ha, sausage dog that’s a bit of an insult isn’t it? She’s a mini smooth coated dachshund? Okay fantastic so can we just have Bonnie up into a sit please. Can we have her in a sit please? Oh she is sitting! Oh sorry can't tell can you!”

“Okay so lets give it a shot now tell her to stay. One short step to your right, relax the tension slightly now return back and just praise with voice only. Don't tug on your leash; it’s like me coming up to you and going ‘good girl’! Just relax your leash, that’s it. Now just say ‘stay’ and face her just get her attention before you do though. Just a short step in front, return back, now pause a moment, exercise finished well done and praise. Good you didn’t tug the leash well done!

Alright well done guys that’s pretty good now look at that, simple isn’t it? it is a simple technique if you're consistent with it I guarantee you, you will have the results you want with your dogs that’s all it takes well done guys."

Cockatiel plucking her feathers

Hi! I hope you can help me with my cockatiel, I write from Spain and here they aren't that common so vets don't know much about treating them. I have a 5 years old female cockatiel and she is very affectionate, 2 years ago I had to spend a couple of months at a hospital and my parents during that time were either working or visiting me, so she felt lonely and started plucking her feathers. Even after I went back home she continued with this behaviour and hasn't stopped. I took her to different vets, they told me to give her small amounts of a syrup that was meant for calming itching and an antibiotic in case it was something producing an itching, but neither worked. I also tried a spray called "Pluck-no-more" with the same results. In case she was lonely we got her a mate, but it may be also female since they don't pay attention to each other at all. She rubs her cloaca on the perch often but the other tiel ignores it (the pet shop said it was male but they said the same with her and then she laid an egg...). The layer that covers the feather while growing (not sure of the name in English) doesn't grow normally, looks more like bland plastic than a hard cover like the ones on my other birds pin feathers (besides her, I have another cockatiel and a lovebird). Is as if the feathers on the plucking areas aren't growing correctly. The areas she plucks are under the wings, the part where wings join the body, and the body area that is covered by the wings while resting. While plucking she lets out small cries. The fluff covers these areas so by just looking at her isn't easy to tell, unless you watch her while preening. I let her play outside of the cage very often, but lately she can't fly well and I think it may be caused by the loss of these feathers. As I said, vets in this area are more specialized in cats and dogs and know little about parrots, so I hope you can advise me since these birds are native to Australia. Is there some kind of balm or spray I can apply on her skin to soothe it? Some medicine I can ask my local vet to use? I love her and it hurts seeing her in pain everytime she preens. Any advice would be much appreciated. Greetings from Spain!