How to Train Your Corgi to Sit

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Written By Dane Michael

I am a passionate dog owner for 10+ years. MyFavCorgi is a community of 500,000+ corgi fans with advice to buy, raise and care for your corgi.

Getting your corgi to sit is one of the most common dog training skills – and one of the most important. The sit command lets you keep your dog behaved and under control.

This is critical when you are outside and around strangers, or other dogs. It can also be useful when stopping to look or a map, or waiting for the lights to change at the intersection!

Based on my experiences and the experiences of many corgi owners in my community, here is my guide to train your corgi to sit with a simple straight-forward process.

What is the sit command?

The “sit” command is like the pause button for your pup’s energy and excitement. When you tell your corgi to sit, you’re asking them to lower their hindquarters and rest on the ground while keeping their front legs standing. It’s a basic and fundamental obedience command.

So, why is it a doggy game-changer? Well, it’s a simple and effective way to instill discipline and control. When your corgi sits on command, they’re not jumping all over people, racing around the house, or causing a ruckus. It’s a moment of calm and attentiveness.

Beyond that, the “sit” command is often a precursor to other commands. For instance, after sitting, your corgi can be told to “stay” in that position, reinforcing their self-control. It’s like building a repertoire of good behaviour, one command at a time.

Teaching your corgi to sit is about fostering good manners, improving communication, and making sure your adorable fluffball knows how to chill out when needed. It’s a win-win for both you and your furry friend!

Why is it important for my corgi to learn to sit?

Teaching your corgi to sit is like giving them a solid foundation in doggy etiquette 101!

Picture this: you’re enjoying a sunny day at the park, and your adorable corgi is with you. You spot a friend, and they’re excited to meet your furball. But, whoops, your corgi’s doing the doggy dance of excitement, jumping all around, maybe even accidentally knocking someone over.

Now, imagine a different scenario. You give a quick command, “Sit!” and your corgi promptly plops their furry behind on the ground, looking all charming and composed. Ah, much better, right?

Teaching your corgi to sit isn’t just about impressing your pals or gaining Instagram-worthy moments (though that’s a perk!). It’s about teaching your pup some manners and control. When your corgi knows how to sit on command, it helps in various situations – from greeting guests without causing chaos to calming down during vet visits.

Plus, sitting is often the starting point for many other commands like ‘stay‘ and ‘leave it‘. It’s like the foundational building block of doggy obedience. So, investing a bit of time and treats in teaching your corgi to sit pays off big time in a well-behaved and happy pup.

What tools can I use to train my corgi to sit?

Training your corgi to sit is a fun and rewarding process! Here are some tools and tips to help you in this training journey:

  • Treats: Treats are your best friend in dog training. Use small, tasty treats that your corgi loves. Reward them each time they successfully sit after your command.
  • Clicker: A clicker is a handy tool that produces a distinct sound. You can use it to mark the exact moment your corgi sits, indicating to them that they did the right thing. Pair the click with a treat for positive reinforcement.
  • Leash and Collar: These are useful for gently guiding your corgi into the sitting position, especially if they are new to the command. Make sure the collar fits comfortably and doesn’t cause any discomfort.
  • Training Mat: Designate a specific area or mat for training sessions. This helps your corgi associate that space with learning and commands.

All these can be used (but are not all essential) as you follow the guide to train your corgi.

When should I start training my corgi to sit?

At around 7 to 8 weeks old, you can start training your corgi to sit. These pups are at that magical age where they’re like tiny sponges of cuteness and potential brilliance – ready to learn.

Bringing home a new furry companion, especially a young corgi puppy, is embarking on an adorable adventure. You’ve got this little bundle of energy and curiosity, ready to learn and explore the world around them.

Imagine you’ve just brought home your pint-sized corgi, and they’re all wide-eyed and bushy-tailed, just ready to take on the world. Right from the get-go, you can introduce simple commands in a fun and encouraging way. Seriously, it’s never too early to start shaping those good doggie manners.

When they are young, they’re not only learning about the whole “being a dog” thing but also figuring out where they fit in with their new human family.

You’re laying the groundwork for a lifetime of good behaviour, and let’s be honest, a well-trained dog is a happy dog. Simple commands like ‘sit,’ ‘stay,’ and ‘come‘ can be your pup’s first lessons in the language of cooperation and understanding.

And the best part? They’re eager, enthusiastic, and have a boundless reserve of energy. It’s like they’re saying, “Teach me, human, I’m ready to impress!”

It’s a bonding experience too. You and your pup are learning how to communicate effectively, setting the stage for a beautiful companionship. It’s not just about training; it’s about building a solid relationship based on trust, love, and a sprinkle of puppy treats.

How to train your corgi to sit? A step-by-step guide

The journey of training your four-legged friend begins now. This is an exciting and crucial phase that sets the foundation for a well-behaved and happy dog.

Whether you’ve just welcomed a fluffy puppy or an adult dog into your life, here’s six steps to train your corgi to sit on command.

1. Find a safe space for training and grab your corgi’s favourite treat

The first thing to do when training your corgi to sit is making sure you have the right space for training.

You need to set aside time in a room that is free of distractions. This may be your living room – without their toys – or simply in your own backyard.

Next, you want to have a pack of their favourite treats handy. These will be used to encourage your corgi to follow commands.

2. Hold a treat in front of your corgi

What you’re going to do is use the treats a bit like a fishing lure.

To start, hold the treat in your hand and put it in front of their nose. Get them to pay attention with their eyes. You can reward them at this stage – as even paying attention can be tricky, especially if your corgi is still young.

3. Slowly lift the treat up over your corgi’s head

Your first action is to slowly begin lifting the treat in your hand up. Watch as their eyes begin to follow your hand.

Move your hand in a gently swooping motion (like an arc) starting from near their nose to above their head. This will encourage your corgi to look up, and force their fluffy butt towards the ground.

Make sure you don’t do this too quickly, otherwise you may be encouraging your corgi to jump. Also, don’t push them into position or force them to sit their butt to the floor. This can be stressful for your corgi.

​When they have put their butt on the ground, give them their treat. Make sure you continue to reward them when they take the right action. That is an important part of training.

4. Add the sit command

At this stage, you can begin to introduce the sit command.

As your corgi is placing their butt on the ground, say the command: sit. Then give them the treat.

This will associate the sit command with the action of sitting – and is one of the fundamentals of training your corgi.

Make sure you are saying the action as they are sitting. Saying it too early or too late can confuse the dog and make them associate the command with the wrong action. This is how you get dogs that associate SIT with eating or licking your hand.

If you’ve made it to this step, congratulations! You have a sitting corgi. But we’re not done yet.

5. Increase the duration of your corgi’s sit

Once your corgi has placed their butt down on command, you can encourage them to sit for longer.
By increasing the time they sit, you will reinforce what the action is, and what command triggers it.

​This pattern recognition (like in humans) will take time for your corgi to master.

A longer sit time also helps make it safer for them when you take them into the great outdoors. After all, a one second sit is not going to be all that useful when there’s danger above.

6. Increase the challenge for your corgi

You should now introduce your corgi to circumstances that are more likely to happen when you take them on adventures.

This means changing where you are standing. It is unlikely that you will be staring at your dog every time you want them to sit.

Try at a great distance, from the side, from behind, anything to mix it up. That way, no matter where they are, they will be able to listen and follow the command.

You can also begin to introduce distractions like toys and other people. This will force them to pay attention to the command in order to be rewarded.

Once that have gotten the hang of it, you can slowly reduce the number of treats you give them. For example, go from rewarding them every time they sit to every other time, then every third, and so on.

By the end of this stage, you should be able to get them to follow your command from wherever you are, without needing to give them treats for following direction.

7. Take your corgi’s training outside into the great outdoors

Now that your corgi has this under control, you can take them outside and try the command in field. 

An enclosed space free of distractions is a good first outing. This may be the local dog park, or a fenced-in nature reserve. Once they’ve had some exposure, you can take them on bigger adventures.

​Be careful taking them around the city – and very careful if off leash – if you aren’t positive your dog has mastered their commands. It is not only for their safety, but the safety and comfort of others.

What mistakes should I avoid when teaching my corgi to sit?

Teaching your corgi to sit is exciting, but it’s important to steer clear of common mistakes to ensure effective training and a happy pup. Here are some pitfalls to avoid:

  • Using Negative Reinforcement: Avoid scolding or using harsh methods when your corgi doesn’t sit immediately. Negative reinforcement can cause fear and hinder the training process.
  • Inconsistency: Using different commands or cues for “sit” can confuse your corgi. Stick to a consistent word or gesture so your dog associates it with the action.
  • Skipping Reinforcement: Forgetting to reward your corgi when they do sit correctly is a big mistake. Rewards, like treats and praise, are crucial for reinforcing good behavior.
  • Impatience: Training takes time and repetition. Don’t rush the process or get frustrated if your corgi doesn’t learn as quickly as you’d like.
  • Training in a Distracting Environment: Starting training in a place with lots of distractions can make it difficult for your corgi to focus. Begin training in a quiet, familiar space, and gradually introduce distractions.
  • Overtraining: Keep training sessions short and sweet. Overloading your corgi with too much information can lead to boredom and a lack of interest.
  • Ignoring Health or Discomfort Issues: If your corgi struggles to sit, they might have a health issue or discomfort. Ensure your pup is healthy and comfortable before pushing them to perform the command.
  • Not Adapting to Your Dog’s Needs: Every dog is different. Tailor your training approach to your corgi’s personality, energy level, and learning style for optimal results.
  • Skipping Basic Training Steps: Ensure your corgi understands simpler commands before moving on to “sit.” A solid foundation helps with more complex training.

By steering clear of these common mistakes, you’ll set your corgi up for successful training sessions and a strong bond built on positive reinforcement and understanding. Happy training!

What are some tips for teaching my corgi to sit?

Here are a cheeky few extra tips you can use to help train your corgi to become a better sitter.

  • Use High-Value Treats: Start with tasty treats your corgi loves to grab their attention and motivate them during training.
  • Timing is Key: Say the command “sit” as you guide your corgi into the sitting position, and immediately reward them when they sit down.
  • Positive Reinforcement: Praise and reward your corgi each time they sit correctly, using treats, pets, and verbal praise to reinforce the behavior. Stay calm and patient during training, even if your corgi doesn’t get it right away. Consistency and positive reinforcement will pay off.
  • Use Hand Gestures: Accompany the verbal command with a hand gesture, like raising your hand with an open palm, to help your corgi associate the command with the action.
  • Practice Regularly: Conduct short, frequent training sessions practicing the “sit” command a few times a day to keep the sessions brief and engaging.
  • End on a Positive Note: Always end the training session with a successful sit and reward, leaving your corgi with a positive experience for the next session.

Every interaction becomes a chance for them to understand your expectations and earn some well-deserved treats and praise. So, grab those treats, put on your best cheerful voice, and let the training adventure begin!

A cardigan welsh corgi sitting on the rocks by the ocean with a forlorn look upon his face.

Final thoughts on how to train your corgi to sit

These are the steps you need to follow to ensure your corgi knows how to sit. This will be very useful for your corgi to know – and very useful for you too as your corgi begins to grow and play.

From experience, we have found some puppies learn much quicker than other puppies – and that’s just nature at work. Patience is ready important, so don’t be quick to use harsh words of your little learner.

With a lot of practice and patience your dog will start to obey their verbal command, and you’ll have your own sitting dog. Oh, and here are a few more skills you can teach your corgi if you want to continue training.

2 thoughts on “How to Train Your Corgi to Sit”

  1. My corgi unfortunately had learned that the word “sit” meant lay down. So every time I say sit he lays down. I am trying to train him otherwise but it’s a little hard.

    • That can be tricky. I’ve found that when your dog gives you the wrong response, just give them the silent treatment for about three seconds (don’t go too long!). By doing this, you’re sending a clear message that what they did wasn’t quite right because it gets zero reaction.

      You may need to break the behavior down into smaller steps and only offer rewards when they get it right at each step. If they are laying when they should be sitting, you can give the treat before they get all the way down – or give it when they get back up to a sitting position.


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