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Building a Dog’s Hind Leg Strength by Sitting Pretty

“Sitting Pretty” or Sit Up and Beg is a great exercise for building hind leg strength, and it also works to build a dog’s core.

Take a look at this short video of Kazou, a canine athlete, who has mastered this exercise especially whenever a tennis ball is involved!

To teach this exercise, have your dog sit in front of you, facing the same direction as you are. Place a high value treat above his nose and lure him up while putting your other hand on his belly or chest area to hold him in position.

Be aware that it may take a long time to build the hind end strength to hold this position, so don’t get discouraged. Kazou is an athlete, so she was able to do this rather quickly. Plus whenever there’s a tennis ball involved, she’ll do most anything!

Once your dog has mastered Sitting Pretty, add difficulty by

  • trying to get your dog to stand on his two hind legs from a Sitting Pretty position
  • using a soft or unstable surface
  • Sitting Pretty on a hill, or
  • asking your dog to move from down to Sitting Pretty.

Sitting Pretty – while it may be difficult to learn, is a great exercise for all dogs, but especially for those prone to hind end weakness.