What you adopt a dog, the thing you want to know how hard it is to train a Labrador puppy. You did not know about his temperament and when he will grow up, he can be anything unable to control.
Training of Labrador involves different steps and methods. “Sit” is the most basic command you should teach to your Lab. Best puppy’s age for this training is 2-3 months. Training starts with giving treats, then gradually you can stop the treats and he will learn to sit.
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This training will also help you if your dog stops responding to your sit command or wants a treat to sit. Teaching your dog to sit actually is very beneficial and can save your dog’s life.
Know your Labrador Retriever
Before you start training of your Labrador puppy, you should know what type of your dog is.
A normal Lab behavior is:
- Good Natured
- Sweet Tempered
- Active and Energetic
- An outgoing and playful
So, when your dog will be mature, he should have all the characteristics written above. All you need to do is to properly train him, so he learns the commands. As he grows older, it will be difficult for you to train him.
Your most attention should be towards following points when you buy a Lab puppy:
- Health Problems
Your dog should have all these normal throughout his life. Labradors face many health problems like hip dysplasia, joint, heart and eye problems, So do your best to handle and treat if your Lab has some health issue.
Why Should you Train your Lab to Sit?
“Sit” is the most basic command and it is very helpful also. You can start your Lab training with that. By this way, you and your dog will get some confidence and if you are new to this field, you will get the confidence to say, YES, I can train a dog too.
A well-trained Lab is an asset to you. Here are some advantages of “Sit” command:
- When you Set your Dog Free: You remove the leash from your dog’s head and allow him to walk freely, but after some time you want him to sit quietly in a place, so you can put him on the leash again. With the help of this command, you can do that easily.
- While Crossing the Road: You are on the way with your dog, and while crossing the road suddenly the red light turned on, you want your dog not to cross the road because he does not know anything about traffic and light signals, the “sit” command will help you there.
- While Driving: You are driving a car and your dog is with you on the front or back seat. Then your dog suddenly frightens by something, and cause a distraction, then use the sit command there to calm your dog.
- You have a Party in your Home: You have some kind of special event in your home, and many guests are there, you don’t have enough time to find and keep your dog with you, then use this command, so he can sit on a place and when you free you can take him where you want.
- You are Tired: When you come home after a tired and busy day, you want some rest but your dog jumps at you and wants some play, then this command will help you to calm him, so you can get some rest.
The most important part is that you must properly train your Lab, dogs with uncompleted training will be unable to obey the commands, in this case, he will either need the treat to sit or just runs away. To avoid this trouble, properly complete the training and when you are fully sure that your dog is ready, then go for next command.
Before you Start
Before starting the training, you need to check the following conditions, because these will help you to avoid any uncertain situations.
- Check the Health of your Lab: The first thing you need to check is his health. A healthy Lab will enjoy his training. If he has some kind of health issue like hip dysplasia or joint problem, then he can’t sit due to pain. So be sure he is healthy, active and properly fed. If you can afford, perform proper tests to detect problems or get the help of a vet.
- Distraction-Free Environment: Strat the training in a distraction-free and calm place. Recommended place is about which your dog is familiar. You did not always need the calm place because when your dog gets sufficient learning, then you can also use commands in other areas.
- Know about your Lab: Before starting, know about your labrador’s temperament, habits, level of stamina and motivations. By knowing all that, you will be able to identify which method will work best for your Lab.
Prepare Yourself before Training your Lab
You need to prepare yourself before you start the training of your Labrador Puppy. You are the leader for your dog and you must have impeccable behavior towards him.
1. Have Patience
Your dog can’t be trained in one day and keep in mind you are dealing with a non-human specie. No doubt Labs are fast learners but not like human beings. If you think to teach a human baby, you need days or months to do so and if you lose your patience while that, then there will be no benefit in the end.
Dogs can easily understand the behavior of a human. If the trainer is aggressive at the start, the dog thinks he will stay the same till the end. So build a good relation with Lab at the start and when training completed you will get 100% results.
2. Have Consistency
Labs love the habits and routines. If you start training of your dog during the daytime, then try to keep the routine and continue to train him at that time. Try to keep the same duration or increase it gradually. You can start with 3-5 minutes, then gradually increase it.
3. No Punishments
Never punish your dog physically or verbally. Punishments will ruin your relationship with your Lab. Try to stay calm and gentle. Never shout or raise your voice. If you punish your dog frequently, then he will run away when training time is near, then nothing will work even treats.
4. Use Rewards
That is actually the basic part of your training. Your dog just needs rewards to be trained. When he does something excellent, hug him, give him treat and play with him. Treats can be your Labs favorite biscuits or something new that your dog loves to eat.
After you read and understand all the above-written content, we can move to the methods of training.
Methods to Train your Labrador to Sit
There are many methods of training, some include punishments too, but here we have safe and easy training methods
- Lure Training – Use of Treats and Toys
- Clicker Training – Use of Clicker Device
- Eclectic Training – Use of Combination of techniques
You can use any of the above methods according to the situation or if one method is not working, you can try another one.
We start with Lure training method which is basic, easy and safe.
1. Lure Training – Using Treats
Simple and easy training method. Best for puppies who are 2-3 months old. The requirement is a food treat only.
- Have your dog standing in front of you.
- Hold the treat in your hand and show him the treat.
- Now slowly move the treat towards him.
- Gradually move the treat over his head toward his tail and say “sit”.
- His head will go up for a treat and his back will be on the ground, mean he will be in the sit position.
- Give him the treat. (Note: Don’t give him the treat until he is completely in the sit position).
- Repeat this method several times a day.
- Don’t push the back of dog to make him sit.
- Don’t give him the treat until he sits properly.
- Do not say “sit down”, only say “sit” because your dog will confuse “sit” with “down”.
- Never teach him two commands at once.
2. Clicker Training – Using Clicker
A clicker is a small device with a button and spring in it, when button clicked it make “click” sound. Karen Pryor developed this method and now it is widely used in dog training. This method, however, may not work on puppies of 7-8 weeks old.
In this method, you have to wait for your Lab to sit and when he properly sits, click the button of the clicker, very soon dog will learn to praise the clicker sound and obey commands.
Here are the Steps:
- Hold the clicker in your hand when you wanted to train your dog.
- Wait for your Lab to properly sit.
- When he sits, click the button of the clicker.
- Make sure you are close enough to your dog and away from the noise.
- Repeat this method several times.
- Soon your dog will learn to praise the sound.
- Make sure you are in an area, free from noise pollution.
- You can use also treats while using the clicker.
- Don’t use force to make him sit.
3. Eclectic Training – Using a Combination of techniques
That is the last training method if nothing else works. In this method, we use a combination of techniques to make a Lab sit on commands. You can physically push your dog downward to make him sit and then give him treat, or push your dog and use the clicker.
You can also combine previously two described methods, Lure and Clicker. Any other combination of tricks can also work. This method is also beneficial in that way, you can use any technique that suits you and your dog.
If you start training of your lab puppy to sit at his early age, then he may take more time to learn, so keep patience while that. Recommended age is 2-3 months for this training. But if you think your dog can learn at his early age, then go for it.
If your dog is too dull to learn and you got no results even after months of training, don’t worry, try to change the method or use the eclectic method. Some dogs are late learners or easily distracted. So keep in mind these things too.
Try to get the professional trainers to help if necessary. Because if you are new to this field, you may not have enough knowledge to understand the behavior of your dog. Professional trainers can guide you after noticing your dog.
You can also get your friends and family help to train your Lab. Although training a dog is an amusing activity but some owner may get bored, so having two or three partners involved in training, you can get some break.
Remember not to punish your dog in any situation. Punishment can break your dog’s relationship with you. This also makes him avoid training exercises.
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