Teaching your puppy to sit

Teaching your puppy to sit is one of the most important things that you’ll do. It is also one of the least complicated aspects of obedience training, so your pup should pick it up fairly quickly with repeated training. Many new owners are unsure of where best to start so we’ve put together some tips for encouraging your dog to learn how to sit when prompted.

Watch our step-by-step guide

We’ve broken our tips down into five key points to help you to train your puppy to sit.

Use rewards

Small, bite-sized training treats can be useful for teaching your dog to sit. Hold it just above their head and say “sit” as soon as your pup sits. This should mean your dog moves into a sitting  position while keeping his or her eyes on the prize. It’s vital not to hold the treat too high so they aren’t tempted to jump for it.

Once he or she is sitting, offer some praise but don’t pet yet. Try to get your dog to sit again by using the “sit” command as a prompt. This may well be unsuccessful in the early days, in which case you can expect to have to use a bit more persuasion.

Over time, your pup should realise that sitting in front of you leads to treats.

Get into a routine

Practice sitting several times per day to help your dog to pick things up more quickly. Don’t spend too long in any one session or he or she will get bored and be less receptive. Five minute repetitions will work well for puppies but this can extend to up to fifteen minutes for older dogs with longer attention spans.

Teaching your puppy how to sit - A Young happy pup with their tongue out

Make it fun

Schedule training so that it falls just before feeding or playtime. This will make it more enjoyable and rewarding for your dog and make him or her more receptive to your commands.

Practice makes perfect

Once your dog starts to make an association between the “sit” command and the act of sitting, he or she will start to learn more quickly. It’s unrealistic to expect this to happen straight away though. Repeated training is key so you’ll need to be patient while your dog understands how to sit.

Why not find out about puppy training classes? You may have puppy parties that are local to you that can help your pup develop basic command skills.

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