Does it matter how many times you say sit? It sure does! If you say “sit” five times in succession, your dog will think the cue is “sit,sit,sit,sit,sit”.

This is a Flip Side story: One story. Two perspectives. Which side do you relate to? Cross posted from Rover and Chubby.

Side 1: (Millie, the Dachshund)

Say It Again Sam

“Sit, sit, sit, sit!” I stare, waiting for him to finish speaking. Humans spend so much time talking. It’s a wonder they get anything done in a day! I’m pretty sure he wants me to do something. I wait for him to complete that long sentence. He pauses then looks at me expectantly. Ah, yes! Sitsitsitsitsit! If I tuck my hind legs under me and put my butt down when I hear that, I usually get a treat. I quickly get into position and wait for my reward.

Side 2: (Sam, the human)

Say It Again Sam

“Sit…sit, sit, sit!” She doesn’t seem to understand when I say “sit” the first time, so I quickly repeat it. Again, no comprehension on her part, so I say it again. I find I need to say it at least five times before she gets the picture. Why doesn’t she get this? She probably isn’t the smartest dog in the world. Oh well. After the fifth time, I pause. Well, are you going to sit or not? Finally, her eyes light up as if she understands, and she sits. I toss her a treat.


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This work by Julia Morton and Sylvia Currie is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Sylvia Currie


I’m an experienced educator, trainer, and lifelong learner. I focus on preventing and addressing problem behaviours. My goal is to make a difference in the lives of companion animals. ~Thompson-Nicola region of BC~