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Dog Tips: How to Teach Your Dog to Sit

Last week, we discussed introductory dog training tips to get you started if you’ve bought or adopted a new furry friend. If you haven’t read that blog post yet, what are you waiting for? Go read it! Now that you’ve read it, we’ll be discussing one of the first commands that you’ll be teaching your dog, which is ‘sit’. This is a great place to start and is an incredibly valuable command for your dog to know. Once your canine knows this command, it will be effortless for you to tell your dog to sit when meeting new people or to sit before you cross a street. In addition to this, the more that you work with your dog the stronger your bond will be with them!

Soul Dog Bodhi being such a good boy and sitting.
  1. Prepare to incentivize with lots of treats! Initially, you will award your dog with a treat each time they sit their backend down. It is recommended that you hold the treat in your hand and place it close to your dog’s nose so that they can smell it. After this, you will slowly move your hand from their nose to their forehead. Your dog will watch the treat by lifting their head up and sitting their rear down. Once they sit, reward them with a treat!
  2. Lure your dog with treats before adding in the verbal cue, “sit”. This process may require some patience with your canine as they learn the command. It is not a bad sign if your dog requires the treats to incentivize them for a long period. They will learn the command in time!
  3. It is recommended that you never push your dog’s hind end down. When this occurs, it may be intimidating and confusing for your canine. It may also negatively impact the remainder of your training session. Instead, return to using your treats as an incentive. 
  4. It is achievable to make sit your dog’s default behavior! What this means is that when your dog comes over to greet you, they will automatically sit down. Or when someone comes over to your home, they will sit down in preparation for the front door to open. By doing this, you will want to have treats in an easy-to-reach area. For example, you could carry some in a treat pouch that you wear around the house. Award your canine whenever they walk over to you and sit!

There are a number of tips and resources available to teach your dog how to sit! Once you perfect this command, you’ll be ready to move on to another one! Additionally, an American Kennel Club (AKC) YouTube video is linked below. YouTube videos are a great resource if it is more beneficial to see and hear how to teach a new command. In no time, your dog will be great at listening to the command and sitting!

Also, do you want to learn more about the incredible accomplishments that dogs have performed? This well-trained dog, Pickles, helped save the day back in 1966. Read more to find out what he did!

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