On occasion, our posts contain affiliate links. However, we only recommend products that we truly believe in. For more information, visit my privacy policy page.

Training a dog to come when they're called is not only a neat trick, it can actually save their life.

Dogs that do not have a good recall can get lost, hit by cars, or run into all kinds of other trouble.

And Shiba Inus are a breed for which good recall is an absolute must. 

shiba inu staying lying down command illustration

Dog Training Methods / Theories Used

Dog training can be challenging - especially for new dog owners and novices.

What makes it even more challenging is complicated training instructions and theories.

While these methods are undoubtedly solid, the language used is aimed more towards professional dog trainers instead of "standard-issue" dog owners like us.

With terms such as Pavlovian conditioning, premack principles, inter-trial latency, conditioned reinforcers, etc - it's no wonder many dog owners find themselves intimidated by dog training before even starting!

So with that in mind, we did our best to structure our training instructions with ease of understanding being a high priority.

shiba inu stand stay

We aim to get you up and running and training your Shibas sooner than later.

As training progresses, we'll gradually introduce more complex techniques and jargon in manageable bite-sized lessons in future articles. 

Our training methods never, ever use physical punishment or any "alpha" dog training techniques. 

We want our dogs to be obedient dogs that love and respect us instead of "compliant" dogs that fear us.

Additionally, numerous studies have shown that fear-based training methods are outdated and linked to poor welfare consequences and undesirable behavioral outcomes for the dog.

Instead, positive, reward-based training is the best method in dog training today. Period. (There are studies that show this).

Our training methods follow concepts and theories from respected and knowledgeable dog trainers that include Jean Donaldson (Academy of Dog Trainers), Jane Killion (Puppy Culture), (Late) Dr. Sophia Yin (Low-Stress Dog Academy), Rain Jordan (Expert Canine / Fearful Dogs Project), and Karen Pryor (Clicker Academy).

Armed with knowledge from the best experts in the field, you'll be enjoying an obedient and delightful Shiba in no time!

We'll be there to help you at each step.

Teaching Your Shiba Inu To Stay (Reliably)

Dog's are highly impulsive and left unchecked, these impulsive actions can lead to negative consequences.

Teaching your dog to resist impulses is paramount in achieving an obedient and well-rounded dog.

The stay command is likely the most important foundational commands teaching impulse control that your Shiba must master with 100% reliability.

The STOP Family of Dog Behaviors

The stay command is apart of the "stop" family of essential anti-impulsive dog behaviors which include:

  • Down-stay
  • Sit-stay
  • Basic stay
  • "Leave-It"
  • Wait at any entrances / exits

It's important to start the training in the order of the above list as each training slowly builds on the previous making it easier for your dog to succeed.

Thankfully, training your dog these important and critical behaviors is one of the easier trainings to master.

Once your dog learns these important behaviors, obedience training in the future will go much much smoother.

shiba inu learning how to execute a down stay

The Basic Stay's: Down-stay, Sit-stay, Basic Stay - 

For the most part, the basic stays are all taught in the same manner with the only difference being the position that your dog is in.

Always start with the down-stay as having your dog already in a down position makes it less likely that your dog will 'break' the stay as it takes extra effort compared to sitting or standing.

* Down-stay

  • Ensure both you and your dog is in good spirits and relaxed
  • Choose a training area COMPLETELY free of distractions / other animals
  • Have small, tiny pieces of treats ready, preferably in a treat pouch
  • Put your dog in a down position (hopefully, already learned)
  • Place one hip under the body for a more 'solid' down
  • Say the command "stay" clearly and firmly with an optional hand gesture
  • Depending on your dog, begin with one to three second pauses
  • If the dog successfully stays reward immediately
  • If the dog advances forward, immediately cancel, reset and try again 
  • As the dog begins to "get it", increase the distance between you and your dog and see how that goes.
  • As your dogs progresses, you can then begin to increase the duration of the stays
  • Depending on the dog, keep the sessions between 10 - 20 minutes in length
  • Always end on a high note
  • Stick to mastering one type of stay before moving on to the next

* Sit-stay, exactly same instructions as down-stay except:

  • Dog is in seated position
  • Extra attention and enforcement may be needed due to your dog more likely to "break" the stay

*Basic stay, same concept with the only difference being:

  • If your dog already learned the the first stays, then your dog should theoretically already know the basic stay
  • This stay is usually used in emergency situations where you simply want your dog to IMMEDIATELY stay regardless of position (sitting, standing, lying down, etc)
shiba inu sitting staying nicely

"Leave It" - 

The leave it command is the next type of "stop" behavior that further builds on your Shiba's impulse control.

This command teaches your dog that not everything he encounters is allowed to enter his mouth - which is especially valuable when coming across both good and bad things. (100 dollar bill / poisonous toad).

The leave it command is a bit harder to master as your dog will be tempted by various objects that can truly test their impulsive natures.

This command is not too be confused with the "drop-it" command as this command teaches your dog to completely avoid touching the object in question.

* "Leave-it" Level One

  • Ensure both you and your dog is in good spirits and relaxed
  • Choose a training area COMPLETELY free of distractions / other animals
  • Have small, tiny pieces of treats ready, preferably in a treat pouch
  • In one hand, hold a 'high value' treat (cheese, meat) in a closed fist
  • When your dog successfully ignores it, reward with treat
  • As your dog continues to obey, add the command "leave it" so your dog will learn the command by association
  • When your dog can reliably obey the command at least 5 out 5 times, you can now "push" you dog to level two.

* "Leave-it" Level Two

Follow all of the same basic concepts as level one above and add a little extra difficulty by changing the location of the object to leave.

  • Instead of having the treat in your hand, place the treat on the floor (near enough so you can block the dog from getting to it before you)
  • Start with one second intervals - reward when your dog "leaves it" for at least one second
  • When your dog achieves a consistent 4 out of 5 or better, "push" to 3 second intervals, and repeat, increasing the time after each push
  • If your dog regresses and can only achieve 1-2 out 5, "drop back" to one second intervals
black and tan shiba inu

WAIT! - 

The final stop behavior covered today is the wait command. This command is especially valuable for Shiba Inus due to their tendency to bolt when triggered.

Considering that Shibas that bolt out of doors could possibly get seriously injured, lost, or worse - teaching this command correctly is an absolute must.

This command teaches your Shiba that they must wait at all entrances, exits, gates, etc.

In the beginning, you'll use the verbal "wait" command but eventually your Shiba should automatically default to the wait position without verbal cueing. 

This training should always be done in a safe location, preferably indoors. 

A leash can be used for dogs that require it, but off-leash is better for the wait command. 

Control and correction can be achieved utilizing the door (via blocking the path)

* "Wait!" Level One

  • Ensure both you and your dog is in good spirits and relaxed
  • Choose a training area COMPLETELY free of distractions / other animals
  • Have small, tiny pieces of treats ready, preferably in a treat pouch
  • Position yourself in front of the door in a position where your leg can "block" your dog from going through the door if necessary
  • Your dog should be in front of you in a standing position
  • Verbalize the command "wait", then toss the treat towards the doorway
  • If your dog tries to move forward, be sure to quickly block any entry, reset, and try again
  • Aim for a wait of 1-3 seconds to start
  • If your dog waits, praise immediately, and resume while gradually increasing duration
  • When your dog can successfully wait at least 30 seconds for at least 4 out of 5 tries, you can then push to level two
  • If the dog can only achieve 30 seconds 2 or less times, "drop" back to lower times

* "Wait!" Level Two

    Follow all of the same basic concepts as level one above and add a little extra difficulty by adding distractions
  • Slowly add distractions to the wait command such as another family passing by, same person holding a tempting toy or treat, same person casually calling the dog's name, same person excitedly calling the dogs name
  • Before moving to increased distraction, ensure that the dog is at least 4 out of 5 times
  • If the dog can only achieve 2 out 5 - "drop" back to less distraction
beautiful red shiba inu lying down staying

Takeaways - 

The joys of having a fully-trained "stop" / "stay" Shiba is priceless.

Sure, it'll take time, effort, and patience - but keep at it until both of you got it perfected.

By controlling a dog's natural impulse to bolt to "grab", you're protecting your dog from harm and making day to day living with your pup so much easier to manage. 

Remember that Shibas are a very independent breed, so working with them consistently and always using positive methods is the key to keeping them interested in the training.

For more on training a Shiba Inu, check out more helpful posts at the training section of of our blog.  

my first shiba official logo

Thanks for visiting Myfirstshiba.com! We do our very best in providing our readers with awesome content about our beloved Shiba Inu breed. Some of our articles include reviews and recommendations to our favorite products. We do occasionally earn commissions from certain affiliate links that help support our work and mission. Thanks again for visiting. Shiba Kisses To All!