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Teaching your dog to sit

Sitting is one of the simplest trick to teach a dog, it is also one of the most useful and important trick i'd recommend people to teach when getting a new dog. Whether the dog is a puppy or adopted it is still possible to teach a dog to sit, it does not matter if the dog is 3 months old or 12 years old. Dogs are like humans, they will sit even when not told to, it can be due to them being tired, just sitting because they are bored or waiting for someone.

The author forgot to include that i sit because i know my picture is being taken.

Why is this trick important? There are so many tricks to teach a dog, but how many of them are actually useful? If a dog knows to sit when asked to, it will benefit the owner in many ways, one of the example is crossing a road, before crossing i would always ask Amber to sit. Once Amber sits, she has to go through another obstacle, which is to refrain from standing and walking/running towards the road because of the moving vehicle. However since Amber already knows to sit when asked to, i simply remind her by saying "Sit" again and this simple trick would save her from getting into an accident. Sitting could also be used to assist your dog in another trick, which is called "Stay" or "Wait", "Wait" is what we use. A "Stay/Wait" looks the same as "Sit", just that while sitting, the dog is supposed to Stay/Wait at the position without moving away even if you walk off. That would be a higher level of training, this is just a brief explanation of how much you will benefit from teaching a dog to sit.

Why do i call it a trick? True enough this seemed like a command instead of trick, however in my opinion i would classify it as a trick because this guide tend to over use the power of treats, once your dog learns to sit as a trick, then you could try to convert this trick into a command, meaning treats would not be used anymore for sitting, this is also harder, we will stick to "tricks" in this guide for now.

This part is important to note if you are following this guide: you are not teaching your dog how to sit, you are simply teaching your dog to sit when asked to. You want your dog to impress you by sitting when asked to, and then get to eat something nice.

What you need:

- plenty small treats
- patience
- firm voice
- leash

Time needed: 15-20 minutes each session, the best is to do it once daily, but no more than 20 minutes per session.

To train a dog to be a sitting machine is a piece of cake, simply give your dog a treat whenever it sits, you do not need to make any physical action to your dog, just wait till it sits and give treats. The only hard part is resisting the temptation to let your cute dog have the treat if it doesn't sit. Amber learned to sit on day 2 with us, once again every dog is always different, some dogs take days, other take weeks, it also depend on how much time you are willing to spare for this training.

My dog is a sitting machine, so what now? It means your dog already knows that sitting means treats, it is now time to tell it to sit when asked to. This time you need some physical action to guide your dog, i would recommend a leash to control your dog in this exercise. Simple hold out a treat, say "Sit" firmly, i assume before you say "Sit" your dog is already siting(because of exercise 1), this is okay because you are only going to enforce the word "Sit" into your dog's ear. However in some cases especially a puppy, they would suddenly jump and run around getting excited for no reasons, this is when the leash would be useful, hold the leash near to your dog's collar, say "Sit" then slightly press your dog's butt down, give a treat. This would be easier if your dog has learned (1).

Now its just "Sit" without using any physical action to guide your dog! Simply hold the treats on your hand, let your dog see the treat and say "Sit", if your dog still doesn't get it, put the treat closer to it's nose, pull it away and say "Sit", do not spam the words but say it once, give 5 seconds interval before repeating. If you think your dog still can't do this, use a leash and lift it slightly, lifting the leash will pull the collar slightly to guide your dog's head up, this will automatically make the dog feel like sitting. Be careful not to choke your dog, they will start coughing when they feel uncomfortable, otherwise it is perfectly fine to give it a slight tension. Always give a treat after.


  1. Before I was rescued, my sister taught me to sit and it took me less than a day to learn!:)

  2. That is so impressive! Clever dog, do show us some of your tricks soon!

  3. i just adopted my sisters toy poodle(pursible) he is a rescue dog that my sister got 6 months ago he is about a year old very lovable dog but very hyper barks so much i have trained him to play fight and dance but for the life of me he will not learn sit i am gonna try all your methods and let you know how it goes.And thanks for a great site i have learned a lot already

  4. Hi Tina,

    Could you email us at with the full story of you and your dog? I have trouble replying through the blog with my mobile and I don't have access to a computer currently.


    AmberToyPoodle Team

  5. Hi I have a toy poodle for 2 years I will try all the methods

  6. Also Amber looks so cute my dogs name is Prince he's black.




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