Only practice with your dog where it is not distracted, for example in your apartment. Equip yourself with enough treats, toys and a dog leash.
In this exercise, you should only train on a leash to begin with. And this is how it works: your dog is on your left. You have the leash in your left hand and a treat in your right. Now hold the dog reward above your four-legged friend’s head. To fix it, he will have to sit down. As soon as he sits down, say “Sitz” out loud, give him the well-deserved treat and praise him effusively. It is advisable to emphasize the vowel “i”. So to say “Siiitz” so that he can more easily distinguish this command from “Platz” and “Fuß”. Over time, when your dog is already responding well to “Sitz”, reduce the amount of treats you give.
The best way to teach your dog to “sit”, which will also give your dog the greatest pleasure, is the playful method. Let off steam with your dog. When your dog wants the toy back and is right in front of you, pull the toy up in front of his nose in an arc. Hold it about half a meter above his head so he can’t get there. Since your four-legged friend desperately wants the toy, there is a high probability that he will sit down. This way he has a better view of his toys. Give the command “sit” and praise and stroke him as soon as he has sat down. However, if he tries to jump, move the dog closer to you.
If your dog has been sitting for 5 seconds, you can increase the distance between you. In the beginning, leave your four-legged friend on a leash and move about a meter away from him. Now give the command “Sit” again. If you have your dog’s attention, a simple visual signal (index finger points upwards) may be sufficient later. But this should only be practiced when the four-legged friend responds one hundred percent to the command. Here, too, you shouldn’t skimp on praise! If your dog has learned to listen to your command from a meter away, you can increase the distance steadily by around 50cm.
Start by counting to one before you resolve the command “Sit” with another one (“Here”, “Run”, “Ok”, “Done”, …). You should then play with your dog immediately. If this step works safely, increase the amount of time your dog is supposed to sit and count to three in his head. The dissolution command is important because your loyal four-legged friend should remain in the “seat” until they dissolve the command.
In order to support the command “sit”, you can introduce visual signals if your dog is one hundred percent confident in the command of the voice. Point your index finger up with each “sit” command. Visual signals are particularly advantageous because some dogs have difficulty distinguishing the commands “sit”, “sit down” and “foot” from one another.
Most dogs carry out the commands “sit”, as well as “sit down” and “foot”, actively and all by themselves. Take advantage of it! This way, your four-legged friend learns the commands without any compulsion. To do this, however, you have to watch your dog very closely. Dogs are fast. You have to be faster. You have to learn to assess your dog so that you can anticipate an action. Exactly at the right moment, when your four-legged friend takes you out (not before and not later), give the command and praise him and give him a treat.
If, despite our tips, you have problems performing the command or if your dog is reluctant to execute the command on the third or fourth attempt, then do not be afraid to seek professional help. Most of the time, the reason for the failure lies in small mistakes, which unfortunately you don’t notice yourself. However, a dog trainer will spot the problem right away and help you resolve it quickly.
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