What is it?
A training strategy that uses everyday situations to reward good manners without setting aside hours of special practice time. Simply put, it’s a way to teach your dog a little impulse control.
Applying the principle of Sit-For-Everything is simple. Whatever your dog wants, he has to “sit”. From now on, doors are not opened; toys are not simply thrown, games are not played without first asking for a sit. For those, and countless other privileges, ask your dog to say please by sitting.
With this strategy, you and your dog both win. You get a well-trained, polite dog and he gets what he wants (his belly rubbed, his leash taken off at the park). What’s more, you have laid the foundation for teaching your dog that waiting really does pay.
How to use it.
Step 1. Make a list of all the things your dog wants and enjoys.
Step 2. Vow to yourself never to give those things away for free again. See them all as training opportunities and ask your dog for a sit.
Step 3. Give him what he wants as a reward for sitting.
Step 4. Repeat, every day, everywhere.
When to use it.
- Before throwing a ball, Frisbee, rope-toy, etc.
- Before giving him a toy.
- Before putting the food bowl down.
- Before handing over a treat, chew or bone.
- Before opening a door.
- Before putting on a leash to go for a walk.
- Before taking off a leash at the park or trail head.
- Before dishing out a belly rub or good ear scratch.
- Before hopping into or out of the car.
- Before greeting guests.
- Before allowing your dog onto the couch with you.
Training Tip: Be patient. Practicing sits in new situations can be a challenge. For instance, a sit at the door when your dog is eager to get out for a walk is harder than a sit in front of you
Juliet Whitfield, CPDT-KA is a Certified Professional Dog Training- Knowledge assessed and travels full time in her RV with her two dogs. Join our adventures!