E still loves hearing stories about back in the day when I had "feral" Miss M. When I first adopted her, she was a complete nut. She didn't know how to keep still, she always needed to be entertained, and I needed to bring her into the bathroom with me because she couldn't be trusted on her own for even a few minutes. But despite all her craziness, I can pinpoint the moment when our lives changed and calm was restored: when she learned "Down Stay".
All of a sudden something clicked with her. She realized, the concept of not moving. And she takes it very seriously. I can keep her in a down stay for 15+ minutes, even on a busy street. I'm thinking Miss M was one of those reclining lion statues in a former life.
And living in the city, I think "Down Stay" is the most important command a dog should know. There are so many practical reasons for a dog to "Down Stay" in the city. Like going inside to use the ATM:
Or going to the Farmers' Market and laying nicely while I choose what to buy:
Or even waiting patiently while the other one goes inside to get something (we never leave them tied up by themselves):
This has become our invaluable skill. Does anyone else have a dog command that changed their life?