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How to Teach Your Dog to Sit

Updated: Dec 14, 2021

Why Teach Your Dog to Sit?

Learning to sit is one of the most essential commands you can train a dog to obey. This behavior is important because once learned, sitting down often replaces unruly behavior a dog may otherwise exhibit. (It can even become your dog's way of "saying please!")

While it will require work by both you and your pup, training a dog to sit is relatively straightforward. Here is the process of teaching a dog to sit, broken down into simple steps.

Step 1. Show them you have treats.

It's important to capture your dog's interest by letting them know you have treats right away. To pique your pup's interest, hold a treat close to their nose. If you move the treat around in front of them, they're likely to follow your hand back and forth.

This is called "luring" and is a very important part of training your dog.

Step 2. Lift the treat above their head.

Gradually lift the treat above their head toward the rear of the dog’s body. As you lure their nose upward, the dog will put its bottom on the floor. Reward your dog with a treat as soon as they sit and if using a clicker, click at this time as well.

Step 3. Add a Verbal Cue.

As the dog begins sitting more often and for longer periods of time, begin adding a verbal cue. It's very important to make sure the dog is performing the behavior correctly at the moment the verbal cue is used, so the correct association is being created. Gradually the clicker can be removed from the training process, however it is important to continue rewarding your dog for good behavior periodically.

If you perform these steps regularly, your training sessions are sure to pay off in time.


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