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How To Train A Puppy To Sit

Your puppy has many things to learn before he becomes an adult dog. You can start training him as early as 8 to 10 weeks old. Your puppy will naturally have a very short attention span at this age but he will learn quickly. Training your puppy how to sit is one of the first things you can work on with your puppy.

Before You Begin

Even at a young age it’s not hard to train a puppy to sit. Before you start any training, though, there are a couple of things that you’ll need to get for your puppy. Start by selecting a collar and leash. Choose a practical collar such as a flat nylon buckle collar. You probably won’t want to spend a lot of money on a collar at this age since your puppy will be growing and you’ll soon have to buy a bigger collar. The collar should be large enough to fit around your puppy’s neck and allow you to fit two fingers between the collar and your puppy’s neck. You can choose a leash to match the collar. Nylon collars like these are sold in most pet stores and come in many attractive colors and designs.

You will also need some tasty treats. These are optional but they do help with training unless you are opposed to using treats as a way to motivate your puppy. You can use any kind of food as a treat as long as your puppy likes it. Small, cut up pieces of cheese make good treats. So do small pieces of hotdog, small pieces of chicken, popcorn, homemade dog cookies, and so on. It is more economical to buy some “human” food and prepare it yourself than to buy expensive dog treats but you can certainly buy dog treats and using them as training treats if that’s what your puppy loves.

Ways To Train Your Puppy To Sit

There are actually several different ways to teach your puppy to sit. There is no one correct way. You can choose the approach that you prefer or the one which you think will work best for your puppy.

Method 1 - One way to train your puppy to sit is by using a treat to lure your puppy into a sitting position. When your puppy is standing, hold a treat slightly above his head. Make sure that he sees or smells the treat. When he has noticed the treat slowly move it backwards behind the puppy. As you move the treat backwards your puppy will most likely move his head back to follow the treat. As he does this he will lower his body into a sitting position. As soon as he sits you should praise him and give him the treat. This is a very simple method but it works well for most puppies.

Method 2 - You can also teach your puppy to sit by simply pressing down on his hindquarters and putting him in a sitting position. Then reward your puppy and praise him lavishly.  Some people don’t like this method because they say that anything that puts pressure on a dog’s hips can have a harmful effect.  However, for the few times you will need to press down on your puppy’s hips to put him in a sitting position it is unlikely that this pressure will be harmful.

Training puppy to sit with clickerMethod 3 - Other people like to use a clicker to train their puppy. Clicker training is very popular right now and it’s easy to teach a puppy using a clicker. A clicker is a small metal box that makes a clicking sound when pressed. You can purchase them at a pet store for a couple of dollars. You do need to use treats to train with a clicker.

To use a clicker to teach your puppy to sit you will need to wait until your puppy sits on his own. Then click the clicker to “mark” the behavior and give your puppy a treat and praise him. This will get your puppy’s attention and he will probably pop back up to see what you’re doing. As soon as he sits again you should click the clicker again to mark the sitting behavior and give your puppy a treat. Don’t forget to praise your puppy. Each time your puppy sits you should click the clicker and give your puppy a treat and praise him.  You will need to click and treat each time your puppy sits. Most puppies catch on fairly quickly. Clicker training is a lot of fun for puppies and dogs because it is so inherently reward-based. Your puppy knows exactly the behavior that is required because you are clicking and marking it for him. And the reward comes exactly at the moment when he gives you the behavior (sitting).  For many dogs clicker training is like a fun game.

Do make sure that your treats are very small when you use a clicker for training. Otherwise your puppy can quickly fill up on treats.

Eventually you can use the clicker less and less and simply tell your puppy to sit. You will ease off the treats and only give them now and then.  However, you should keep praising your puppy to let him know that he’s doing what you want him to do.

These are three good ways to train your puppy how to to sit. They will all work. You can use the method that you think will work best for your puppy or experiment and try all three methods. One way or another your puppy will learn to sit!


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