Does your dog know how to sit?
Most likely the answer is yes. Sit is often one of the first things dog-parents teach.
But does your dog know how to sit the first time you say it? Does your dog wait to sit until you say it five times? Does your dog know how to sit at the vet's office? Does your dog know how to sit at the brewery?
Do you find yourself leaving your dog at home simply because they can't behave?
Some people think it's not important to train “obedience exercises” anymore.
Not true. Obedience is powerful!
Obedience (I'm using sit as the example here) teaches your dog self-control. It calms your dog. It keeps them from doing less desirable things (like sitting rather than jumping on guests.) And it increases the bond between the two of you.
Generalizing the sit command will make your lives together so much easier. (Generalizing = teaching your dog to perform at the first request and in any situation.)
Asking your dog to sit more than once or raising your voice doesn't work. Doing this just teaches your dog is how to count and that you don’t mean what you say unless you yell.
Obedience opportunities and practice times include:
- Meals: Sitting while waiting for meals teaches calm in an exciting situation. They have to use their brains to relax, sit, and know that self-control is required to get food.
- Walks: A sit will keep chats with people when you are out on your walks pleasant. With a generalized sit your dog will remain calm and quiet – even when other dogs are present.
- Vets Office: Sitting at the vet's office is a true exercise for their self-control. The waiting room can be a chaotic environment full of smells, people, and other dogs galore. Also, your vet tech is going to love you if your dog can sit calmly.
- Social Media: Listen – I know you want all of the cute pictures of your dog on IG. Keep them still and get the best shots with sit.
- Breweries: Teach your dog to be calm in a party-like atmosphere. They will learn self-control around food, drinks, and perhaps people who have lost a little of their own self-control.
Obedience training is the foundation for a great relationship with your dog. You can use sit to communicate desired behavior throughout the day. With a generalized sit, your dog learns the calm and self-control needed to go anywhere and do anything.
Training will take time and can get frustrating. But I know that you are more patient than your dog is stubborn! You can do this!
Want More? You can find everything you ever wanted to know about how to teach sit in my Basic Training obedience class.