It is possible that you can make an old dog learn to sit it takes time, sometimes dog's learn fast it depends on the dog, cause animals are like humans some learn faster than other's. Like my boxer i had he learned everything within 3 day's, but then my golden retriever he still has not leaned much and so on, but he is learning slowly as he get's older tho.
Absolutely...so long as your dog is interested in learning them! You just have to figure out what will interest him. Find out what you dog loves! For some it is food treats, for other it is a toy or ball, for others your praise and attention is all they want. Your approach to asking your dog to sit will depend upon which of these your dog prefers. Generally, sitting is taught by putting one hand on the chest of the dog and the other on the hindquarters, then pushing their butt down, while saying "Sit!" in an authoritative (but not loud) manner - then immediately praising them and giving them the reward (treat/toy/more praise). Don't worry if they flop over and do it wrong on the first try...the point here his to help them understand what it is exactly you are asking for..which is namely their butt on the ground in one way or another.
Repeat this a few times, getting a bit more firm about them actually sitting and not just flopping over. By this time (after the first few treats) they should be paying attention and noticing there is a system going on.
"If I do this thing she's asking, I get a treat!"
They'll probably pick it up pretty quick, but don't get frustrated if their attention span doesn't last too long. It's good to take breaks and come back to it for short times at different times of day. If they have been able to stay focused, they should soon be sitting as soon as your hand touches their hindquarters. Then start asking them without touching them. Also start asking them to stay sitting.. Tell them to "Sit!" and start increasing the amount of time before you give them the treat from a few seconds at the start up to a few minutes or more as they get better at it. If they get up, don't give them the treat.. ask them to sit again and wait the decided amount of time before rewarding them.
Overall it's a fairly simple idea.. just a basic training outline that can be used for many animals and many 'tricks'. Just be patient and take the time to find out what your pet likes and shows interest in! That way you both enjoy the time spent training.
At first, you'll probably need to provide a reward. Some folks take hold of their collar and GENTLY press on their haunches while saying sit. Sometimes by elevating their chin/head and gently pressing on their behind, they naturally sit - but say the word SIT while you are doing it - then praise the heck out of them followed by a treat (Petco has some GREAT mini-mini-mini size so you don't have to overkill on giving them treats. Then you just keep doing that a WHOLE bunch of times during the day over and over. At first reward pretty regularly but make sure PRAISE is overkill. Then you can move to a hand signal. I snap my fingers and POINT at Grifin's behind and he will sit now. Should not give a treat every time though because then they are dependent on that! The sit should be fairly easy - UNLESS a dog has a physical problem like hip dysplasia or something and then they just need extra time to do it.
My simple, fool proof method. Take a handful of favorite treats, put one treat in your closed hand and let the dog sniff it then slowly move this hand from the dogs nose position and up over the top of his head while saying the word SIT- he will automatically sit. Give him the treat. Repeat several times then try the word on its own without the hand movement. If he sits to the word give him the treat. If he forgets the next day just repeat from the beginning with the hand movement. Keep training times to no longer than 5 mins to start with and slowly build on that. Some dogs get bored with repetition and may not focus for long periods - like kids.
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