How to train a Pit Bull to be Cool

Virtue: The Coolest Pit!

This lesson applies to all dog owners, and any breed. My first Pit Bull was a doggie named Virtue. As a person who was somewhat prejudiced and very uninformed about this particular breed, let me testify; this breed is cool! Virtue is now 13 years old, and lives with my youngest son, Levi. Levi has done a great job raising, training and caring for him. Levi  is a pet groomer in RI.

Pit Bulls get a bad rap

After ten years of raising one I am noticing that more people are beginning to realize this. Any breed of dog will be bad if they are trained badly. But a well raised, well behaved Bully Breed dog…Well, not to fall to the other side of my prejudiced ways, but in my opinion there is no better dog companion than a Pit Bull.

The best way to start training your dog to be a safe, obedient and loyal friend is to teach him that although he is your buddy; you are his boss! Your dog can’t help but to think that you’re a god whenever he sees you grasp a door knob and open a door. But to establish yourself as his boss; food is the best tool.

First train him to sit – this is kindergarten education for any dog, along with learning to “stay.” Reward his obedience with a treat, and scold him with a “no!” when he doesn’t obey. This is dog training 101.

The proper use of food will have your dog figuratively “eating out of your hand.” The most important rule to follow is:

Make your dog earn every morsel with an act of obedience!

No trick. No treat. Sound harsh? Well, it isn’t. Don’t you wish that all you had to do was sit and shake your bosses hand to get a days pay, some praise and a pat on the head? The least your drooling doggie should do is sit before being handed a treat or a bowl of food.

Before you or anyone else in the family ( pack ) set his bowl of food in front of him, make him sit. Place the bowl about three feet from him and don’t allow him to start eating until you give him permission. Wait about twenty seconds. Once he completely gets the idea, you will be able to put a treat on his snout that he will patiently balance there until you signal him to take it with a little wave of the finger. I’ll give instructions on how to train your dog to do that trick in a later post.

Is this any way to treat a friend? No. Not a human friend. But there isn’t as much of a chance that your human friend is going to bite your neighbor or take a dump on your kitchen floor! The most important general rule of dog ownership is to keep this in the forefront of your mind:

Your dog is not a human being!

I know it is easy to become blind to this obvious fact when you see your dog friend express the entire range of human emotion; from happiness to sadness and from pride to anger. When you witness this, as all dog owners have, just learn that animals have a soul but it is a soul that needs to exist under your dominion. Don’t feel sorry that he is subject to such a totalitarian government. You and the rest of the family need to be Kings and Queens in your dogs eyes, –and he will want nothing more than to be your loyal subject.

There are a ton of YouTube videos showing dogs “saying grace” before they eat. What is your opinion of that? Sacrilegious? I don’t think so. In Old Testament times, when there was a “community fast” the animals were required to fast along with their owners. I also think it is appropriate to thank the Lord for the gifts we receive from His bounty, especially when they are passed onto our pets, which are also a gift from God. Either way, making a dog pause and wait for your permission to eat, will cause him to appreciate your care and nurturing. When an animal takes these things for granted, he can become dominate, and get twisted ideas that your only purpose in life is to serve him, instead of it being the other way around. Here is my own dogs say grace video:

Dog’s Say Grace

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