So you want to teach your pug to sit? Of course this technique will work for any dog but since I’m a bit of a crazy pug lady I just said pug!
I would highly recommend taking your dog to obedience classes, 100%. You get to spend quality time every week dedicated to working on communicating with your dog, you get to meet like minded people, and you get to see lots of cute dogs! Hugo attended obedience classes for about a year and loved it!
However, if there isn’t a class near you or you can’t make the time and place every week then the next best thing is giving it a go at home.
Holly was home trained, we went to about three classes in total and she hated them all so we had to home train!
Hugo’s trainer is on maternity leave at the moment so we train both of them at home now and we all love it! Yep all of us, me included! I absolutely love being able to communicate with Hugo and Holly and I’m certain that it helps Holly in being a little calmer when she’s stressed.
The absolute easiest command to teach is ‘sit’, in fact 99% of the time they will probably sit whilst waiting for a treat already! The other 1% of the time they’ll jump all over you, cover you in pug hair and you’ll drop the treat in the commotion, which as far as the pug is concerned is a resounding success!!
So, if they sit already, you just need to get them to do that on command, and if they don’t we can handle that too!
Holly, the clever little pug that she is, doesn’t even need telling anymore, when we’re out walking and she’s staying close (or walking to heel as some may call it) she knows that when we stop she has to sit beside me, and she does that because she knows when she does that, she gets a treat!
Pugs are very food obsessed and we’ve found that using high value treats, such as chicken or cheese (or something they really love or don’t get every day), then they respond very well. Eventually you would work towards using less treats and more praise as a reward but for now be sure to count any treats you use during training as part of their daily food allowance, or your pug will get F.A.T! I’d also recommend training when your pug is hungry, but not ravenous, just enough so they’ll take notice when you have food but not so they’ll snatch it from you!
So, first things first, decide what your high value training treats will be – I found it best to stick to one choice as you’re starting out, that way the dog will hopefully recognise the type of treat and know that means training time. We chose chicken. Cut it into pieces that are large enough so they know they’ve had a treat and are eager to earn another, but small enough that they don’t have to stop, tuck a napkin in their collar and get out a knife and fork! We’re talking a quick taste and it’s gone kinda size, I’d say about 1cm square (1/2″) but you don’t need to get a ruler out here!
Once you’ve got your treats you need something to put them in – For me this was as important as having the right treats and knowing what to do with them. I’ve seen far too many people fumbling around in their pockets or carrying just a few treats in their hand, I know, you’re thinking how many treats do you need that I can’t just fit them in my hand? Well you need a lot, and you need both hands free, so I’d recommend a bumbag. You can pick them up relatively cheaply and usually there’s enough space in there for treats plus your phone, keys and some money if you plan on going out and about.
So, now you know what you need you can go get prepared and then check out more teach your pug to sit!