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Alexandra Macias is the owner and operator of Alex Macias Dog Training, The dog trainer is in to answer your questions. Alexandra Macias, owner and operator of the Long Beach-based Alex Macias dog training, will be sitting down and answering readers’ pet-related inquiries. This week, Alex is answering a general reader inquiry.

Hi Alex,

My dog Remy likes to bolt out the front door every time it opens. I’d really like to be able to leave the house and not have to worry about him getting out. What should I do?

– Reader

Hi Reader,

“Door dashing,” as we trainers like to call it, can really be frustrating. I like to teach dogs “go to your spot.” Choose a spot in your home for Remy to go to when the door opens. This will give him a special place that’s his, and will give him something to do other than run outside when the door opens. To teach Remy the “go to your spot” command:

Choose a spot in your home that is far enough away from your door, but still close enough for Remy to see what’s going on. A dog bed or piece of furniture in your living room would be perfect.

Show him that you have a treat, and lead him over to his spot. Say the phrase “go to your spot” as you slowly lead him over.

Once he’s on the spot, praise him, and reward him with the treat. Repeat these steps until he goes to his spot on command.

Once he has the “go to your spot” command down solid, now add a sit stay. This is important because you don’t just want him to go to the spot, you want him to stay there while the door is opened. Practice this while you open the door. You may want to have him on a leash, just in case he doesn’t listen to the stay, and gets up to run. Good luck! WOOF!

– Alex

Alexandra Macias is the owner and operator of Alex Macias Dog Training, a Long Beach-based dog training business. To ask Alexandra questions for a future article, leave them in the comments below, or email her at  [email protected].