Training your dog to follow the “sit” command is considered by most dog trainers as an “entry-level” command. And most fur parents like you don’t need to buy a bazillion gadget so your little pup can master this (whew!) or hire Cesar Millan. It is very doable and all you need is to have a stash of this basic thing – dog treats!
Now if you are ready with your treats and would like to give it a try, follow these simple steps:
Step 1: Hold your dog’s favorite treat and quickly position it in front of his/her muzzle.
Step 2: Slowly, move the treat upwards and let him/her follow the treat’s direction. As your pup follows the treat, it SHOULD automatically put his butt on the floor.
Step 3: Repeat the up and down maneuver until your pup is in a sitting position. Once your pup is seated, give the treat – but don’t forget the praise and cuddles, too!
As you notice your pup getting quicker landing on his/her butt the moment you do the maneuver, you may now verbally introduce the “sit” command. To do this, calmly utter the word “sit” before showing the treat and proceed with the rest of the technique. Your pup will soon associate the word with the action and you can intermittently give the treats from then on.
There are other variations to this technique, too. Some prefer to use toys instead of a treat to lure the dog into the sitting position. Others would even use a clicker so the dog will associate the “click” sound with the command. But regardless of which approach you follow to train your dog, keep calm, patient, and consistent. Research shows that “negative” training methodologies result to dogs stressing out. And as a result, this can also severe your relationship with your pups.
1. Dogs Are Capable Going Through Extensive Training – How Much More The “Simple” Ones?
Dogs are intelligent creatures. They wouldn’t be trained for important “tasks” if they are not up for the job, won’t they? And if they are capable of mastering laborious tasks such as sniffing prohibited goods inside the airport (or bombs!), then what’s preventing you from teaching them a very basic command such as “sit”?
The “sit” command is considered by a number of dog trainers as one of the top 5 basic commands that you can easily teach your dog. And most pups are capable of mastering this command within just a couple of days!
Playful dogs with “strong” personality may take a little bit more time to train – but don’t get discouraged! In case you are finding it difficult to progress any further with training, take a breather. Re-evaluate your training methodologies and assess whether you are doing some rookie mistakes when it comes to training your dog. In fact, some pet owners think their dog is impossible to train only to realize later on that it is their training approach to blame.
2. It CAN Prevent Chaos
I have seen other pet owners rant on Facebook about their chaotic life whenever their pups get a little bit excited and rowdy. Add up to the struggle that pups grow pretty quickly so a jumpy dog will eventually be a lot more difficult to manage. Especially if you own a big dog breed such as the malamute, getting knocked over during meal times or wrestling to put on the leash to go for a walk will be a daily struggle if they are not properly trained. As a result, you might even dread doing these things as it becomes a power struggle between you and your dog!
The sit command can put order back in your life and will remove your resentment from doing these things. Especially once your dog mastered the verbal command sans the dog treat, your pup will immediately keep still with the butt on the ground and capable of waiting patiently for you to finish! All you have to do is to issue the “sit” command and let your pup watch over as you prepare his/her meal or collar to get ready for a walk.
In case your pup just recently mastered to sit and starts to get rowdy, issue the command again. Stop what you are doing to put more focus on the command rather than the next activity, too. And, you don’t have to wait them to “grow a bit” to train: a dog is never too young to get started!
3. Your Dog Becomes A Lot More Manageable, Even Outdoors
Can you imagine walking an untrained dog outside that runs after everything or tries to cross the street even if the red light is on? Or, is the visit to the vet a nightmare for you since you can’t manage to keep your fur baby to keep still while waiting and causing a ruckus inside the clinic? If this is you, then it must have been hard living in your shoes!
One of the practical benefits you can reap from training your dog the “sit” command is you can expect your dog to obey it everywhere – even outdoors! Especially after they have fully mastered the command without the “reward” in place, obeying the command upon hearing it has become a habit instilled in their system.
Just keep in mind that your dog may respond differently at the beginning while practicing the “sit” command outdoors. Distractions are everywhere so it is easy for your dog to lose its focus and ignore the command. So even if your pup has been constantly following the “sit” command without treats indoors, grab a few treats when you are taking him/her out. You may use this to go to “practice mode” in the unlikely event that he/she won’t follow the verbal command.
4. Jumping At House Guests (Even The Poor Postman) Will Be A Distant Memory
Do you dread the thought of having guests coming over your house because of your jumpy dog? Or, did the poor postman fled in a jiffy when your pup went uncontrollably upset as the poor guy tried delivering a parcel at your doorstep? These reactions are quite normal especially for playful or aggressive pups. And in case you don’t know, your guests (and the postman) don’t like it either! But did you know that training your dog to sit can quickly address these things?
If you are having guests, issue the “sit” command before they enter the door. I personally recommend issuing the command even before the doorbell rings as to let your pup focus on obeying your command instead of the doorbell. Keep your dog in the sitting position as the guests arrive and instruct them not to “greet” the dog to avoid breaking the spell. Once the guests are settled in, you can lead your dog to stay in a different area (in the backyard or in a different room) as the guests stay inside your home. The same tactic can be used when you think that the postman is about to arrive, too!
However, don’t think that the “sit” command will keep your pup sitting for hours while your guests stay at your home – it won’t. A more rigid dog behavioral training should take place before you can expect your pup to do this for you. But the sit command is a great way to start!
5. It Is A Great Initiative To Teach Discipline
Discipline is an important element of being a responsible dog owner. Owning a pup is not all about the fun activities and playful things you can enjoy together. It also includes teaching your dog how to harmoniously live within your household and community. Keep in mind that an untrained dog will not only cause your home some serious damage but you can expect major complaints from other people, too!
The “sit” command is considered to be an entry-level dog training command. And once your pup has fully mastered it, you can move on to teach him/her other commands such as “leave it” or “heel”. Successfully teaching your dog to sit not only establishes your authority as the pet owner over your pup but your pup also learns that you are somebody he/she can trust. Establishing this bond makes your pet-owner relationship stronger and you will realize that your dog heeds better to your command, too!
Various researches prove that your dog is fully adaptable to the language or “signal” to indicate the command, too. So use a word according to your preferred language or signal you can easily use daily if the word “sit” does not seem natural to you.