Sitting is a fundamental behavior in obedience training. This should be starting right when you get your dog. There are many ways of starting the process but today we will learn how to use positive reinforcement training to do “sit”.
Bring your dogs favorite training treats and get your dog positioned in front of you. We will use a verbal signal paired with with a hand signal. Say the word “sit” and move your hand with a treat in it from your dogs face back toward their back. Your dog will begin to follow your treat and naturally fall back and sit, the second your dog sits say ” good” and reinforce that behavior. Do it again and again, reinforcing only when they completely sit. That is key because if you say good and they are not sitting they will take advantage of your mistake and do less and less . So only reinforce behaviors when it is complete also reinforce immediately. The probability of a behavior reoccurring is increased by the immediacy of the reinforcing.
Now if your dog doesn’t emit sit we will LRS. It is called the least reinforcing stimulus . It is like a 3 second time-out. All you do is ignore the wrong behavior. So you say sit and he always sits and now you say sit and they are still standing. Ignore that behavior which lets your dog know something is not right and then ask again.
Sit is an important behavior. It is the “gateway” behavior to a world of other behaviors. I personally don’t let any of my dog clients get freebies. Before they go for a walk I ask them to sit whilst the leash goes on. When I come home and the dog runs to greet me I say sit immediately.
Let sit work for you!