How can I teach my dog to sit on cue?

Teaching a dog to sit on cue is a great first or second trick to teach your new puppy. Dogs who learn simple tricks like “sit” are more likely to have success with more complicated tricks like roll over, or shake with his paw. Build up your dog’s ability to do tricks by first teaching him how to sit. Use positive reinforcement, with lots of praise and a food reward each time your dog sits on cue during the teaching process.

First, have your dog come to you and show it the food reward. Next, say the word “sit” and gently push on his rear until he sits down. Your dog will most likely be concentrating solely on the food reward and not even fully aware that he just sat down. Keep repeating this activity until your dog is aware that to get the food reward, he needs to sit down.

Practice with the food reward many times, and then start to hide the food reward until after your dog sits. Practice this in different areas of your home, and even outside, to show your dog that whenever you say the word “sit,” no matter where he is, he needs to sit down. Eventually you can only give the food reward at random times so that your dog remains motivated to sit when you tell him to, but not solely because of a food reward.

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