Dog games for kids: teach your dog to sit
Learning to sit is a must for a well-trained dog who knows its place in the family pack. This easy introduction to dog training for kids is also the basis of many dog tricks. Teaching Fido how to sit for just 10 minutes before dinner every night will keep everyone well occupied.
What you need:
- 1 dog
- A fistful of delicious dog treats (don't offer boring things like kibble, but try pieces of dried liver, barbecue chicken or chopped up frankfurt)
- A willingness to practise often for short periods of time
Henry the dog can do lots of tricks. Watch the video to see his dog training in action. Try starting your dog on 'sit' before moving on to Henry's repertoire.
The easiest way for kids to teach dogs to do simple things is by 'luring'. Luring is exactly what it sounds like – you lure the dog into doing what you want by offering him a treat.
Stand or kneel in front of your dog. Have a treat in your hand and have your palm facing up. Hold the treat in front of your dog’s nose then slowly lift the treat over his head.
As your dog looks up to follow the treat he will naturally sit down. As he looks up and starts to sit, say “SIT”. Try to say it before his furry bottom hits the ground. Then right when his bum hits the ground, say: “GOOOOOOOD!!” and give him the treat.
Don’t lift the treat too high or your dog might jump up to try to get it. The movement is like making an arc from his nose up and over the top of his head as if you were trying to put the treat on the back of his collar.
Practise this a few times but don’t let your dog get bored – it’s best to do a few short practice sessions rather than one long one.
Hints and tips:
- Try to say “SIT” only once and then wait for it to happen. If you keep repeating it: “Sit...sit…sit…sit” your dog will start to think the command is “sit sit sit sit” and will always wait to be told several times before he does it.
Soft treats are best. Anything too hard and crunchy takes a while for the dog to munch and by the time they’ve finished, they’ve forgotten what they did to earn the treat. So go with pieces of cooked meat or small bits of frankfurt.
- Thanks to our sister company Kidspot Australia for creating the instructional video.
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