How to Teach Dog to Sit

teaching dog to sit

There are many ways to teach a dog to sit. Some use body language, treats, praise and most likely a combination of all methods. Depending on the dog and owners experience level training dogs this can be easy or difficult.

When using body language, you want to look the dog in the eye and stop moving. This is done better at a door, sliding door, kennel cage and other places you can get the dogs attention.

Finding ways to make the dog sit without telling them to sit is the best way to learn how to teach them to sit. Dogs will do this behavior and then you can add the word sit to the equation. Very important for all commands training.

Treats come into use with dogs that are strongly motivated by food. Be aware all dogs are not driven by food and it is better to use real meat. Chicken breast, steak, or something similar will engage dogs with lower motivation.

Praise is good when you want the dog to show excitement during the training session. Do as you wish but I like to keep the sessions with a lot of focus and speaking at times distractions dogs too much.

Petting them without speaking is often the best way to praise overall.

Teaching a Dog to Sit is the Best Command

When you are training a dog to be respectful coming in and out of doors there is no better option then having them sit at each stop. Teaching the dog to sit and then teaching them patience afterwards is one of the best things you can do.

Once the dog is sitting invite the dog outside, out of the crate, out of the dog park, and every door you get. Building a stronger control over the dog through simple commands has proven to be effective with keeping the dog calm.

Due to these life rewards being such a strong motivation I think it is better than treats and praise. Using the sit command effectively while teaching the dog to sit and after the behavior is taught is important.

Training Dog to Sit

You can do sessions where the dog is sitting for 10 times but there are so many opportunities to train them there is no need for it. As previously discussed, take the time to make them sit at doors.

Although you shouldn’t have to do a session when making them sit at doors patiently. If you choose to forego the best way to train them to sit you can use sessions instead and give them repetition.

That alone will make them sit and patience inside and outside the house. Changing the scene is perfect for mixing up the training. Teaching that they need to listen at the park, while meeting new dogs, and other situations.

Life Rewards

Life rewards is the best method for training. Some dogs don’t like treats and others are not fond of playing with toys due to low prey drive. Something that is consistent regardless of the dog’s preference is life rewards.

They need to use the bathroom, but before they do, they need to sit at the door. Going for a walk or coming out of the crate. Before eating is another big one from their dog bowl whether it is dry food or not.

While walking and there is a red light always request for the dog to sit. After a short period of time the dog will come up to any door and sit without being told until you open the door and invite them out.

After each correction making the dog sit will be one of the best changes you make when correcting the dog. Follow them at a distance and don’t stop until they sit down.


Training with treats is not something I think you must do but if you want to do it you will have success. Winging the dog off expecting a treat will soon be a reality.

Food can be a big motivator for the dogs that show food strong attention. These types can have food and treats in dog training while effectively teaching them the body language and verbal ques to the sit command.

While this may be the case you want to make sure treats are a motivating factor. If it isn’t it is best to not use them when ineffective. Best time is to give them treats when the session is over.

University of Florida has an excellent short article about teaching a dog to sit with treats 


Praise is best when teaching a dog to come or while running and walking the dog. Since you want the dog calm after a correction or when sitting at doors waiting for you to invite them out praise can be counterproductive.

Whenever using a method to assist you in training make sure it is adding to your current command training. When behavior makes it more difficult to train the dog you can wait until after you are done and praise after.

Excitement is a big factor when teaching a dog to sit. Jumping out the skin and barely able to sit or happy feet is something you don’t want to see. Best time to praise the dog end of a dog sitting session.

How to Teach Dog to Sit and Stay

Once the dog is sitting at an acceptable rate you should be able to teach them to sit and stay at the same time. Using body language when teaching the dog to sit and stay is the best way to start.

After the dog is sitting ask them to stay and take a few steps away. This command to sit and stay should be taught with food. Specifically, pieces of steak or chicken to keep their interest.

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