Teaching your dog to sit is one of the first basic dog commands you’ll want to work to master. It’s the foundation for training your dog to perform other tasks as well. Training your dog to follow the “sit” command is one of the first and most important tasks your dog will need to learn.
Top 5 Tips on How to Teach a Dog to Sit
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How to Teach a Dog to Sit
Teaching a dog to sit requires patience, focus, and at least a handful of yummy dog treats. Getting your dog to sit in the first place can be accomplished pretty easily, but getting them to keep their bottom on the ground takes a little more practice. Setting you and your dog up for training success means you’ll be ready to accomplish any task together. Teach your dog to sit with these tips in mind.
1. Limit Distractions
Much like with humans, the environment makes a big difference in what dogs can accomplish. Learning a new task is more challenging with distractions present. For dogs, this might be other people, passing cars, other animals, or toys. To ensure a positive dog training experience, try to limit distractions right off the bat by beginning training in a quiet place, like your home or backyard where there are few other things to catch your dog’s attention, if any.
2. Start With Hand Motions and a Lure
Using hand motions to communicate to your dog that you want them to sit is the beginning of training this command. A hand motion that’s widely used to tell a dog to sit is an open hand with your palm up towards the ceiling, moving it upward in front of you.
Combine the hand motion with a lure (like a treat) to encourage and guide your dog into the sitting position. Raising the lure should naturally cause your dog to raise their head and lower their backside. When they do this, give them a reward to show that they are demonstrating the expected behavior.
3. Add in a Verbal Command
Once your dog starts to get the hang of the hand motion command that tells them it’s time to sit, add a verbal command. Of course, the most common phrase to have a dog sit is simply the word “sit” itself. Once you’ve added the verbal command, slowly reduce to lure or the number of rewards given to teach your dog to sit without an outside incentive.
4. Use Positive Reinforcement
You want to keep encouraging your dog to do the behavior you're trying to teach, and positive reinforcement is the best way to do it. Using positive reinforcement gives your dog a sure sign that they’re doing a good job by giving them a reward or incentive, like a treat or extra verbal praise.
5. Practice in Short Sessions
Teaching your dog to sit can be challenging. It certainly requires effort on both your part and your dogs. Keep training sessions short to avoid your dog developing a negative view of what should be special bonding time with your pet. Remember to have patience. If you start a training session and it’s just not working, take a break and come back to it later. You and your dog will be glad you did.
How Long Does it Take To Teach a Dog to Sit?
The time it takes to teach a dog to sit can vary. Starting training your dog early in your relationship is the best way to lay the groundwork for a lifetime of successful training. Whether your dog is a puppy or has reached an age of a little more maturity, you can expect to spend anywhere from three weeks to two months training your dog to sit properly.
What Commands Should I Teach My Dog First?
Training your dog to perform the most basic dog commands is essential for behavior training. Starting with simple commands and working your way up to more complex commands and service dog tasks. The essential commands that you should teach your dog first are typically:
Learn How to Teach “Sit” with Pettable Academy
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