Basic commands such as sit, stay and come are traits every Chihuahua needs to learn. Teaching your Chi commands, and having them obey the commands, puts you in the dominant position. Being dominant is vital to your and your fur baby’s relationship, plus it will help with common Chi issues such as anxiety. If your Chi thinks they are the leader of the pact, it can also cause issues such as uncontrollable barking and biting. One of the main goals of training your Chi to sit and stay is to not only protect them, but to establish that you run the house.
Before You Begin Training
Treats, treats and more treats! Chihuahua’s love their food and treats so before trying to train them to obey simple commands, have treats readily available. While they love soft treats that are bacon and sausage flavored, it’s better to use small milk bones to help prevent tooth decay and weight gain.
In addition to treats, you must find a distraction-free zone for your Chi’s training. Chihuahua’ can easily become overwhelmed and distracts by other animals, loud noises and other people. Chi’s have short attention spans to begin with, the less distractions the better your training will go. Plus, all of these elements will prevent you from giving your Chi all of your focused attention. While most owners believe training outdoors is more efficient, it’s actually the indoors that will work best for attention spans. Outside allows too much free space and smells from other creatures. Indoors will provide a safe and familiar environment that is enclosed and where you can control the distractions.
Sit. Good Boy!
Once you’ve established the ground rules of treats and a quiet area it’s time to take you Chi to that area and begin training. You can start with the simple command of sit. The trick to making your fur baby learn how to sit on command is by holding a treat in front of the nose and moving it up and back towards the tail while saying sit. While doing this motion, stand directly in front of your Chi so that you are their focal point. Each time you begin the command, hold the treat in your hand and hold it to their nose. The smell of the teat will have their fixation and their curiosity will entice them to listen to what you’re telling them to do.
Your Chihuahua will not understand what sit means right from the start. With your hand motioning down their tail to the ground they will naturally sit on the floor. By constantly saying the word sit, they will associate the simple command with the natural action. This simple directive will not take long for you Chi to learn. Once they do sit on command, rewarding them with treats, love and praise will help them continue the action with ease.
There are instances where some Chi’s do not learn to sit on command immediately. It’s important to not make them continue the training. Sessions should usually last only 15 minutes, but depending on your Chi’s personality, they could easily become tired, bored or distracted during that time frame. Forcing your fur baby to train will only hurt you and your Chi in the long run because you’ll both become frustrated. Always remember to reward them for the simple things, such as trying to sit on command or even just looking at you when you say their name.
Chihuahua’s are known for quick and soundless escapes. They see you leave and they bolt for the door. For a tiny pup, this is extremely dangerous and can lead to serious consequences for you and your Chi. It’s vital that your fur baby knows how to sit and stay when commanded to do so.
When training your Chi to sit, you want to command their attention by saying their name firmly. The same can be true for teaching the command of stay, however it’s best to say their name in a soothing voice. Depending on your Chi’s personality, this will either make them hyper or catch their attention. This command will probably take longer for your Chihuahua to learn than sit. If they try to get up, lie down or move in any way, gently but quickly place them back into the stay position. Wait five seconds and then give them a release word of your choice, whether it is “okay,” “go” or a creative word of your choice.
While instructing your Chi to follow simple commands, never stare them directly in the eyes. They will become intimidated and act out either viciously or anxiously. Start small with only a few seconds of “stay” and work up to a few more seconds, but never exceed 30. A good way to practice the command is to do it in front of a door since that is when Chi’s like to escape. If the door opens to the outdoors, be sure to put a lead on them. Treats are always encouraged with they learn a new trick or listen to simple instructions.
Be Patient and Consistent
Sit and stay are the two common commands for Chihuahuas for various reasons. These commands are simple and easy ways to control your fur baby. The key to having successful sessions in training is to be patient and consistent. You must know your Chi’s personality and how long their attention span really is. Short training sessions over a period of time will be more beneficial than trying to cram it all in within a few days.
Chihuahua’s are smart, but their opinions and personalities are strong. As a tiny breed, they do not like to sit, especially for long periods of time. Using treats are the most effective method to teaching commands. Once your Chi has established those commands over a period of time, start cutting the treats down.
Training your Chi to listen to you and behave is not hard. If possible, start early! A Chihuahua must know who the leader is, or they will develop a skittish personality that you try so hard to avoid. Be patient and consistent and your little baby will be sitting and staying like pros!