When you get a new dog, there are many things that you will have to get out of the way immediately, such as toilet training, what bed to get, and much more. One of the most important steps of introducing a dog into your house is training, or more specifically teaching them how to sit.
Training your dog to sit in a crucial step to teach in the early days and should be tackled as soon as possible.
Getting this out of the way at the first opportunity may result in it saving your dog’s life one day when they are crossing the road. You can also train them to sit when greeting people to stop them from jumping up.
- Find a calm and quiet place where you can get your dogs full attention — this can either be inside or outside, as long as there are no distractions!
Ensure that you have a sufficient amount of treats on hand as, if you are at the very start of training, this will take a very long time and a lot of treats!
- It is important to let them know when they are getting something right, this can be in either the form of a verbal acknowledgment by saying “yes” or similar, or by using a clicker — these can be obtained online or at most pet stores. You want to make sure your timing is spot on for this type of training, so refrain from using “good girl, good boy or good dog” as you want something as short as possible. Pairing this with a treat/reward is very important.
- Start by taking a treat and holding it out to your dog’s nose, they are likely standing at this point as they won’t know any better. Slowly raise your hand above and over their head. Following this, your dog should then begin to move their head back and follow the treat with their nose, when doing so, their bottom should touch the floor. The second that this touches the floor, say “yes” or use the clicker and then quickly reward them with a treat for their efforts.
- Keep repeating this until your dog is quickly sitting down when toy, present them with a treat and then go on to move it from their nose to above the head.
- If you notice that they are struggling, simply have a break and come back to it at a later time. It is important to take it slow and to give them the time they need to learn and remember what they have learned.
- At this point, you can start introducing the word “sit” or whatever word you wish for them to respond to. As they begin to go into the sitting position, carry on saying “yes” as soon as they sit down, following this up with a reward. Repeat this several times so that your dog has as many opportunities as possible to associate the word “sit” with the action of sitting.
- After you have repeated stage 5 several times and you feel your dog is getting the hang of it, try it without holding a treat and without saying the word “yes”. Simply say the word “sit” and move your hand as you did before. If your dog struggles without a treat, you can continue to use it before trying to remove it again.
- Now that your dog is responding to sitting down on command, you should try and find somewhere a bit busier where you can continue your training. This ensures that your cat is able to continue responding and reacting to your command regardless of the environment. Because of the new surroundings, you may have to go back to step one for this but your dog will soon be able to work out what is going on provided you are calm and consistent with your training!
If you are consistent with your training and follow all steps precisely, your dog will learn how to sit in no time.
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