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How to Teach Your Dog Not to Run Out the Door

Updated on October 30, 2015
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Your Dog and Safety

You never know what's on the other side of the door. It could be a car, a stray dog, or any kind of danger. When you're dog bolts out the door, they are put at risk to those dangers. Teaching your pup to patiently wait when the door opens is crucial to their safety.

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Teach Them to Sit at the Door

  1. Put your pup's leash on with whichever training collar you're familiar with using.
  2. Approach a closed door, and ask them to sit.
  3. Slowly crack open the door. When they get up to try to go through the door, correct them with a firm leash pop and "no", shut the door, and ask them to sit again.
  4. Repeat step #3 until they learn to stay seated when the door is cracked open. When they do this correctly, reward them with a treat, praise, or toy.
  5. Continue to repeat this process until you're able to open the door completely and your pup stays seated.
  6. Remember to use this anytime your dog is around and wants to go through the same door you're opening.

Maybe you want to teach them not to bolt out the door, even if you're leaving without them. Many dogs panic when they see their owner leaving without them and try to squeeze through the door. Once you've mastered teaching them to sit at the door before they go out, teach them to sit at the door calmly when you're leaving without them:

  1. Have them sit as you've been doing before, then step through the door.
  2. As you shut the door, throw them a small treat.
  3. Open the door immediately and reward them again for staying calm.
  4. Continue this process until you are able to shut the door for a few minutes without them panicking.

If they do panic as any point, open the door, give them a firm "no" and leash pop, then go again.

Keeping your pup from running out the door is great practice for their safety and manners. Taking the above steps can greatly improve the relationship between you and your dog.

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