Updated: Jun 23, 2021
This method can be transferred to anything you want to train your puppy todo from sit to play dead or empty the dishwasher. A puppy learns best through Positive reinforcement for a job well done, this increases the chances that the puppy will do that behavior again and again, and more importantly with even being asked! This is great news for us. Think of that time you will be cooking in your kitchen and your dog is trying to chew your feet….. if you reward him for going and laying down and not for nipping at your feet, its then much more likely next time he will go lay down. Pay attention to your puppy and reinforce him for behaviors you want to see more of, this is what i like to call the common sense method, if it appears to be common sense to us, reward him!
We need to go through a series of steps when teaching anything new
For the sake of explanation, let’s review teaching the puppy to sit.
A puppy naturally knows how to sit. We want to teach the pup to sit when we ask, first time every time, we would also like to know what to do if they don’t sit when we need or want them to. We will go through this one step at a time. These steps are adaptable to anything that you want to teach your dog. We will also talk about the use of food, first as a lure and then as reinforcement for doing the behavior.
At any point during the training process, if you see things begin to deteriorate, backtrack and set your puppy up to succeed by taking it straight back to these basic steps.
Step One – Get Pup Comfortable With The Position
Lure your puppy into the sit position, it is not necessary to use the word sit in the beginning, since your puppy has no idea what the word actually means. We only want to be able to smoothly get them following your hand with the treat so he plunks down into a sit. You will find this easier to do in a place of least distraction and if you move your hand slowly keeping the treat on your dogs nose. As their bum touches the floor say YES! As you release the treat (do not delay)
Step Two – Insert The Cue
Once you can easily lure your doggy into a sit insert the word “sit” before you move. (Get their attention - “sit” - lure into position - ”yes” & release reward) Feed your puppy immediately as his bum hits the ground.
After a few sessions of multiple repetitions, your puppy will associate the sound of the word sit with the position that you have been luring him into and reinforcing him