A student recently wrote to ask about a stay command when we’re teaching an outrun and I thought the question/answer might be helpful here as we’ve received it a few times, here goes, cheers!
I have noticed that in your training you repeat “lie down” numerous times in order to keep your dog in one place such as when you want to walk part way to the sheep before when teaching an outrun. Is there a reason you don’t have another simple command, like “stay there” that will make your dog do just that? It seems so much easier than repeating “lie down” so many times.
You’ll see what she means in the video Developing the Outrun,
As it relates to the stay command, we don’t use it on young dogs by design. We want to cultivate enthusiasm and enjoyment with our dogs and when they are young anything that takes away from that is something we avoid.
For example, if you use a stay command with a dog doesn’t have very high drive, has any fear, excessive eye, sensitivity etc., they may use a that stay command as avoidance (or intentional misunderstanding) for walking up
….for dogs that DO have high drive, (desperate to go by virtue of the high drive) we would need to discourage them a bit in order to get them to stay—in both scenarios, the possible unintended consequence of diminishing enthusiasm is not worth it for us.
The repeating of the ‘lie down’ command allows us to prevent any unintended consequence of the stay command while still effecting the result we want.
We do have a stay on our open dogs but only after they are fully trained do we apply it. Hope that helps!