Sit Means Sit Dog Training Reviews: Worth or Just a BS?

Last Updated on June, 2024

If you’ve been searching the internet for the best dog training programs, you have probably come across Sit Means Sit. So, should you buy into it, and is the program really worth your bucks? 

Amongst the hundreds of reviews I scoured through, one embellishing the shock collar method as the “only effective method to train your dog” caught my eye. But is that true?

An unruly dog may cause many mishaps, from injuring people to property destruction. But how you stem out these behaviors determines the safety of your dog. And it also affects the level of trust they will hold towards individuals.

*Read on for my honest, deeply-researched review of Sit Means Sit Dog Training and what program I recommend instead.*

Who Owns Sit Means Sit?

Fred Hassen founded the Sit Means Sit Dog training program in 1998. According to him, this program shows spontaneous outcomes in a dog’s focusing abilities.

In the over 20 years since beginning his venture, he has trained and continues to train many dogs.

He seeks to educate more individuals on dog training by chairing seminars and opening numerous training outlets.

With over 36,000 subscribers and +1,000 videos on his YouTube Channel, Hassen cements his position as one of the most popular dog trainers in the USA. He also started an educational group on Facebook that shows his training methods in practice.

He boasts several titles in dog competitions, including the second position in world champions at Dock Dogs.

Also Read: Koehler method of dog training made simple

How Does Sit Means Sit Dog Training Work?

training dogs in sit means sit class

Sit comes with multiple training programs to suit different dogs depending on the training goals required and dog type.

The programs include:

  • Day Training
  • Group Classes
  • Frequent Fido
  • Tune-Ups
  • Private Lessons
  • Puppy Classes

Let’s get more insight into the programs, shall we? 

Day Training and Group Classes

If you feel insecure leaving your dog at the training center for several days or even a night, this program is a suitable choice.

The beauty of day training is that you get to examine your dog daily. So, you won’t be asking yourself questions like, “Is the training safe for my dog?”

Moreover, it sits well with a busy schedule as you can pick your dog up after your day’s activities. Besides, you get to watch videos on how the training sessions went during the day.

Besides the trainer-only dog coaching sessions, you can also enroll in group training. Group classes are a great way to have a one-on-one session to polish your handling methods as your dog improves their skills.

However, I would have loved it if there was more than one weekly group session per dog.

Frequent Fido

This program is an add-on to the day training method and commences once your dog completes the former program. 

In Frequent Fido, you can go for full-day training sessions once each month after the regular daily training sessions elapse.

These monthly visits allow your dog to remind themselves of the various training activities they participated in during the daily training.


The Frequent Fido Program is an excellent choice for you if you want to ensure your dog perfects their memory of the numerous commands.

The program is also flexible, so you can sign up as you start your dog on training or while the training sessions progress.


The Tune-Ups program is a considerable solution if your dog starts behaving in a way you don’t like after training. This program aims to root out new behaviors in your dog or previous behaviors that your dog may be showing again.

During the Tune-Ups Program, the trainers at training class work with your dog for three days. These sessions work similarly to the daily training sessions. So, you will be dropping your dog or training in the morning, then picking them after your working hours.

You can access the Tune-up sessions if you were a previous customer of Sit Means Sit or if your dog is receiving training in one of their other programs.

Private Lessons

For this program, you have one-on-one sessions with your trainer and dog. This means that you can experience firsthand how the training sessions occur and ensure your dog isn’t being taken through anything you would disapprove of.

Sometimes, dogs might respond to commands when executed by the person who trained them and in the training environments.

So, with private lessons, you can avoid instances in which your dog may fail to act as trained because of the difference in the environment and the person giving the command.

You can participate in helping your dog to hone their skills at your place, the training center, or other location. This flexibility makes the Private Lessons suitable for more individuals.

Puppy Classes

Age-friendly training might be the best program for your little furry friends. In this case, the Sit Means Sit’s puppy classes are the ideal program.

The puppy lessons fall into two groups for a more age-specific training approach. The first group is for eight to 16-week puppies, while the second one encompasses four to six months old pups.

In the programs, puppies undergo maker, behavior, and basic command training. There is also an off-leash session where the puppies can play and interact with each other.

Up to two people can attend a class together with their puppy, which is a reasonable number. The costs, however, are slightly high at $195 for the smaller pups and $120 for group two.

Employee Training

To have a franchise with Sit Means Sit, you have to attend their training sessions chaired by the founders and lasting three weeks. The course takes place in Las Vegas and goes for $17,500 minus food, traveling, and other expenses.

After the training, one must show an adept ability to run the business and the training sessions.

Their trainer schooling sessions can be quite a pain in the neck from various sources. Unfortunately, not everyone manages to get a franchise with them.

Starting your franchise is not easy as well, as you need about $1,500 for training equipment, a net worth of $50,000 or more, and $20,000 worth of liquid assets.

Worth reading: Spirit dog training reviews

What Collar Does Sit Means Sit Use?

If you are looking for a versatile way of training, then this class might not be the best option for you.

Almost, if not all, of their training sessions incorporate their Sit Means Sit Collar.

When the trainer requires the dog to sit, they use the shock treatment.

When it’s time to instruct your dog to sleep, the shock treatment does the job. Whether you have a puppy, an old dog, an excited dog, a sad dog, a biddable dog, a ferocious dog, or a gentle dog, the training is the same: shock collars!

sit means sit collar

The singular focus on e-collars is a weakness, even if used properly. While it may work on some resilient dogs, it might end up ruining some perfectly trainable dogs.

The Sit Means Sit Collar supposedly is better than competitor e-collars because of several aspects like their lanyard positioning to ease the handling.

But the reason I say supposedly is that the collar might not be the bed of roses the company paints it to be.

How to Use Sit Means Sit Dog Collar?

According to them, their collar is wholly safe for both your dogs and yourself. The collar employs technology that’s similar to electronic muscle stimulator units to control its output.

The collar has adjustable levels starting from one. So, for example, if you set the collar to the lowest level, they might not be able to feel its pulsing. The other options are the low continuous, the medium continuous, and the high continuous settings.

Depending on your dog’s temperament and the number of distractions around, you can adjust the collar to a level that can elicit a response from your pet.

The collar also has a multi-dog feature that allows you to control up to three dogs simultaneously. For multi-dog training, push the button on your collar until the green light goes out, then press the button on your remote you want it to correspond with.

Sit Means Sit Dog Training Prices

Sit offers interested dog owners a free consultation session where they study your dog’s behavior to determine the training needed.

You will get a quote on your dog’s training based on:

  • Your location
  • Your dog’s age
  • Your training goals
  • Dog’s temperament
  • Previous training

That said, you will typically spend at least $1000 for a year of training. If you consider other training programs available, this price is humongous and may not offer value for your money.

You will spend $195 to train a two to four-month old puppy, while training for a 16 to 22-week puppy goes for $205. So even though the fee is one-time, spending roughly $200 for a maximum of two months of training is still pretty pricey.

Sit Means Sit Dog Training Testimonials (Mostly Complaints)

After looking at many reviews, I noticed that most of them are on the Sit Means Sit website in the different franchises.

The company receives many rave reviews on their websites but a relatively less welcoming community on other websites like Reddit and Indeed. Don’t get me wrong.

They do get some positive feedback across discussion websites, just not as many as their official sites.

According to one, their trainer qualifications are more capital-based than merit-based.

Sit Means Sit Dog Training User Review 1

To some extent, that statement holds as a few cases of improper handling are noticeable as you read more reviews. For example, one reviewer notes how a Sit Means Sit Trainer derived pleasure from dog mistreatment.

Sit Means Sit Dog Training User Review 2

Like several others who distrust the process, another person voices their distaste for the collar-limited training method procedure..

Sit Means Sit Dog Training User Review 3

Also read: Don Sullivan’s Dog Training System Reviews

Sit Means Sit Dog Training Pros and Cons


You can tailor the training session to suit your schedule
Their Collar has an adjustable pressure level to suit different dogs
The e-collar treatment often results in the desired behavior
Workers get paid breaks, good healthcare, and there are generally satisfying employee relationships


The company mainly focuses on using the shock collar irrespective of the issue at hand. This approach might not suit all dogs
Some trainers don’t have the required skills to train the dog properly without injuring them
The Sit Means Sit Collar, while marketed as harmless, might result in dog injuries and an impaired relationship with your pet
The training hours can be lengthy, sometimes forcing trainers to wake up at night to handle dogs
Sit Means Sit Dog training prices are somewhat high

Best & Cheaper Sit Means Sit Dog Training Alternative

logo of k9 Training Institute

While Sit Means Sit Dog Training may get the job done, it ruffles quite a lot of feathers for my liking. Thankfully I came across the K9 Online Training Institute that addresses some of these issues.

The first thing that caught my attention was the price, since Sit Means Sit programs are much more expensive. Expensive to the point where you will spend over $1000, K9 training institute is completely FREE

I was staggered, for the amount of training the program offers, it can’t be possible. 

On top of that, the program is based on positive reinforcement which willingly evokes a response from your pet and not out of fear or stress unlike SIT means SIT which uses the shock collars that tempers with this will and might result in physical harm to your dog.

Below is everything this Free training program offers:

  • Potty training techniques.
  • Training techniques to stop unnecessary barking and steps to teach your dog to alert you to strangers without barking even once.
  • Leash training along with tips to stop pulling.
  • Steps to teach your dog to always come when called.
  • How to train your dog to stop jumping on people.
  • Steps to help your dog to tune out distractions.
  • Steps to teach your dog to understand body language so that you don’t need to raise your voice or use verbal commands in public places. 
  • Training the dog to follow not only your commands, but much more.

These are everything the K9 Training Institute offers, for absolutely $0, this is unbelievable. With that, the program can be used to train any dog regardless of age. Which is excellent. 

If you’re concerned from whom you’ll learn all these, don’t be. Dr. Alexa Diaz (PhD in animal behavior) and Eric Presnall (host Animal Planet TV show “Who Let the Dogs Out”) will be your trainers through the free program. 

Both of them are highly experienced and most importantly excellent teachers, the way they approach training makes it much easier for dog owners to learn. 

I have no idea why both of them are doing all these for no cost whatsoever, but it’s certainly a dream for us dog owners. 

If you want an excellent alternative to the highly expensive SIT means SIT, this is it. 

K9 Training Institute uses reward based training, provides a lot of content to help you change your dog to be a better canine companion with the help of some of the highly experienced trainers and out of all it’s all free. 

Who wouldn’t want to take advantage of that?

Frequently Asked Questions

The salary range for employees at Sit Means Sit varies based on the position they hold. Dog trainers at Sit Means Sit earn approximately $14.57 per hour. Sales managers earn some of the highest salaries, around $45 – $49 per hour. On the other hand, kennel technicians may earn as little as $9 per hour.

Yes, Sit Means Sit offers various payment plans to cater to different needs. The options include Gold, Platinum, and Ultimate packages, with the Gold package being the most affordable and lasting for three months. Platinum packages offer more value for a slightly higher cost and last for four months, while Ultimate packages are the most expensive and also last for four months. Board & Train services do not have payment plans.

As of the time of the press, Sit Means Sit has 147 locations spread across the United States and Canada. To find a Sit Means Sit location near you, you can use the company’s trainer locator tool. Simply enter your zip code, and you will be provided with several nearby locations marked on a Google map.

The training methods used by Sit Means Sit are intended to be humane, and most of the staff strive to maintain ethical standards. However, there have been instances where trainers have gone too far and used excessive force, such as continuously administering electric shocks until the dog yelps. Additionally, even experienced trainers may sometimes engage in cruel behavior towards pets, as demonstrated by the case of Oreo from Mansfield.

Yes, Sit Means Sit incorporates the use of e-collars in their dog training program. The company believes that this is the most effective method for training dogs.


The numerous positive reviews on the Sit Means Sit Website had me excited to try out their program. But, unfortunately, it is a little disappointing that for about $1,000, you will treat your dogs to only shock collars without considering the implications.

The K9 training institute is an excellent alternative to Sit Means Sit as you’ve got nothing to lose (it’s all free). Moreover, you’ll have less worry about making your dogs uncomfortable or potentially injuring them.

K9 Training Institute (K9TI)
k9 Training Institute logo
Ease of Training




Overall Score


The institute has a free online dog training workshop.
The Master Class offers unlimited personal coaching for specialized training.
It is suitable for any type of dog with behavioral issues.
Training works well for both puppies and adult dogs.
The FREE ACCESS valid until the end of June
The paid dog training program can be a bit expensive, but it is worth the price.
1.5 out of 5 stars (based on 13 reviews)
Very good0%

Never walked outside

September 15, 2022

I emphasized that outside walks were the most important thing my dog needed to learn. As far as I can tell, she was only taught to walk inside. Outside she was a nightmare. After paying SMS for a one week training session, I had to hire a personal trainer for my dog. All is great now. But Sit Means Sit did absolutely nothing to help her learn to walk outside.


Not recommended!

July 28, 2022

Good review, Sit means sit program is not worth spending our money to. People who train dogs are often cult-like in their personality, feeling they are better than everyone else. They often talk bad about customers for not being as good as they are. They are also very discreet when it comes to things like being overly aggressive with dogs and anyone who messes up.


Thanks for BETTER Alternative!

July 28, 2022

Thanks, Thomas. This review saved me my money from spending it on a regular program. Obviously as I heard sit means sit is not a good training platform, this review proves it. And my thanks is not only for saving my money without spending it to sit means sit, It’s also for letting me find a good online training platform in the alternative subtopic. I’ve read so many reviews about sit means sit, but never seen a review like this with a solution. Once again Thanks.

Lena Bradberry

Sit Means Sit Staffs Sucks.

July 28, 2022

Horrifying place. Management is a joke. Sit means sit staffs works for only their salaries not for customer’s satisfaction. They think our pets are like a toy. They don’t even care it’s a living being.


Wasted money on Sit Means Sit!

July 28, 2022

We paid for our Great Dane to be trained and promised that when he was brought back, he could be off-leash. However, this was far from what we got. On top of that, he was left there for boarding and got an infection, but they did pay for the bill at our vet, which was really nice. I still complained about his behavior after that, but I got no response. I don’t think they have trained large breeds at all, the first dog they originally brought to our house for demonstration was a mid size dog and well trained. We paid a lot of money to have our dog brought back to at least be able to walk in our neighborhood and we still can’t. My advice here is, don’t ever waste your money on sit means sit dog training.

Benjamin Bayer

Found a Good Alternative to Sit Means Sit.

July 28, 2022

I was searching a good online dog training program to train my pet dog (Luna) and found this program’s review. I completely read this review and felt sorry for wasting the time on this. Coz sit means sit is not worth the money I think. With that Frustrating moment, I scrolled the page fast, and found a word like alternative. And that’s where I stood up, coz I’ve heard about brain training for dogs but, I didn’t know it’ll have these much of training sessions and will be easy to follow their guides. Thanks for mentioning those infos.


Did not have the best experience at Sit Means Sit...

July 28, 2022

Although I read reviews that were positive, I did not have the best experience at this location. My dog came back with muzzle marks and a rash from the buzz collar, and he would shake when I tried putting his collar on. I send my 6-month-old dog to another board-and-train program that was half the cost, and it’s night-and-day from my 2-year-old I send to the Sit Means Sit board-and-train program. The only reason I didn’t give it a 1 star was because it was during covid.

Elsie Woods

Sit means sit SCAM!

July 28, 2022

Thanks ipet for an amazing alternative dog training program. Really appreciate research for this review. You just save people’s money from spending it on a scam program like sit means sit. BT4D is an easy to follow online program that saves time and money. I’m glad I saw this review and found a good program.

Alvin Dacosta

Not Satisfied

July 28, 2022

I have never spent so much money so inefficiently in my life. I paid over $3k to have my dog boarded and trained for 10 days. I told the trainer that I needed to board my puppy to train because I was incapable of putting the time in with two young children and my current pregnancy. I was assured that my dog’s bad behavior of chewing would be resolved and she would be potty trained. After the training and payment, the follow-up trainer told me that anytime the dog had an accident (only on our carpet) or chewed (our baseboards or our couch), it was my fault for leaving her unattended. The only thing Sit means sit taught my dog to jump onto a high place and “place.” The vet told me not to let her jump off of anything because she has bad knees. I was told that any time I complained about her not being trained, it was my fault for not following through with the training and leaving her unattended. Very disappointed.

Amelia S. Messer

Sit mean sit unprofessionalism!

July 28, 2022

I have never experienced such unprofessionalism as my girlfriend and I have been looking for a place to train our two German Shepard/chocolate lab mixed puppies.

We arranged a home consultation for wednesday morning at 10am from sit means sit dog training. We received a text asking for confirmation for our home consultation on the Tuesday before the consultation.

They managed to spell my name wrong… I don’t get how you could misspell “Matt,” it’s not that big of a deal. My girlfriend’s number was also incorrect, but fortunately they had my number correct.

Fast forwarding to Saturday morning. The trainer is 10 minutes late, We receive a call from someone from Sit Means Sit saying that the trainer is unable to locate our house, and that we must of given them the wrong address.

The girl calls back 5 minutes later and tells me that our address doesn’t exist. Very disappointing experience. I was hopeful because of the other yelp reviews and a personal recommendation.


Bad Experience

July 28, 2022

I don’t want to be one of “those guys” because we didn’t get to experience what sit means sit has to offer. We drove for two hours in total to come to a scheduled 45 minute assessment. We received confirmation of our appointment time via text, but somehow it didn’t get in their system. All of the trainers that could have done it had gone home or were busy at that point. What’s more, they only offered us to come back another time, which we certainly did not want to risk them not having any trainers available again. They said they would give us a call to reschedule, but they never did.


Absolute disappointment

July 5, 2022

his is to the point. Absolutely accurate. Exactly same disappointment that I had with the training for my best friend Bond!


I won't recommend this Thing

July 5, 2022

At first though that SIT uses science based techniques to train dogs, but extremely surprised to see that this is the case, Thanks for spreading the word M8.


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Lauren Klein
Lauren Klein is a freelance writer who originally comes from rural Arkansas. She has a Canis Panther Dog Breed. She loves to visit pet training schools with her pet, and give her fair share of thoughts through IPetGuides.

1 thought on “Sit Means Sit Dog Training Reviews: Worth or Just a BS?”

  1. Hello these comments are very interesting. I too have use sit means sit and somewhat dissatisfied. I was assured after training my dog, he would be a totally different dog. I have paid over 2K for his sessions, however very little change I see. I have a 15 month Cane Corso, during consultation it was explained my expectation and desire of what was needed with my dog. So with the owner assurance the behavior will and can be corrected, during the next to last session the training says to me, ” He has been very aggressive and for me to be on alert with him. I’m just letting you know that for your safety.” I have never experience and attacks or aggressive behavior towards me nor family members. I am truly disappointed.
    Going through treatment for my health issues, I would like my dog to be attentive, listen, protective, and the old saying dogs best friend. I really should have research further before spending all that money for my dog to only listen when he has the collar on. A lesson well learned.


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