How to train pit bulls to sit

I am not a certified dog trainer with fancy papers though I have trained dogs all of my life, starting as a child. We always had boxers and it was always fun to teach them to play games with us.

I have held a few career positions that included the title of “Trainer” in both sales and the IT field. I have a daughter and several nephews and nieces as well and that title was needed at those times.

I have had the idea for a long while that “one cannot raise a child unless one can train a dog and vice versa”. They both are asking of your time and both need to know what limits you tolerate. In my opinion, dogs are easier than kids.

I currently own an Amstaff, mistakenly considered an APBT. However, being a terrier he has the traits they all do which I consider to be the inquisitive tenacity to follow what they see, hear and smell until schooled otherwise. Terriers were basically bred to hunt vermin and other small animals, correct? Any of the bull and terrier breeds follow that trait.

The first thing I want any dog to learn is to pay attention to me. The first command will be “come, here, heel” or whatever I feel fits the dog. Dogs all have different personalities and you can pick one of a thousand words to match your feelings toward the dog. Foreign languages work well. I sometimes merely make the noise of clearing my throat – I learned that from my dad in my youth. I always speak in a constant tone without harshness or excitement so the dog understands this is not playtime. I have also learned to reinforce the command with a hand signal. I use different signals than those used by commercial trainers and my dogs are oblivious to some of the trainers who try with them. I can flash a simple hand gesture and the dog will do what the trainer wants while watching me. It is hilarious. I use miniature dog biscuits as reward treats and nothing more is really necessary.

“Sit” is easy after the dog learns to come to you. I merely say the word and push down on the base of the tail with my fingers. For some reason, most dogs I have encountered will sit when you push there. Once they learn the command and understand the hand signal it is a breeze.

When I would take him from his kennel to outdoors he learned the command “Pee-Pee” when he urinated. That was easy and the only thing I can say is you have to look for your opportunities to catch his attention and reinforce your intentions for what he is doing naturally. He was 10 weeks old and would do that with no problem.

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