Teaching dog training basic commands is one of the most thoughtful learning opportunities you can give your pet. Perhaps the biggest benefit of learning how to train a dog is it allows you to build a stronger relationship. It also provides your dog with healthy physical and mental stimulation while allowing it to become better integrated with people.
Training dog basic commands is something you can do yourself. In this article, we’ll teach you the easiest and most basic tricks in the book.
Let’s get started!
Pull quote 1 of 3: Training lets you build a stronger relationship with your dog, provides healthy physical and mental stimulation, and allows it to better adapt to different environments.
Dog Training Overview
When it comes to dog training, you have to be consistent and patient. This means you need to continue practicing commands with your dog regularly.
Ideally, dog training should incorporate positive reinforcement, a method that involves motivating and rewarding your pet for good behavior.
Obedience training for dogs focuses on socialization. It can be undertaken as soon as your puppy reaches eight weeks old. When learning how to train a puppy, do it regularly. Before long, your pup will be able to confidently engage with other people and animals in any environment.
4 Basic Commands for Dogs
You can teach your dog limitless commands by starting with the simplest ones and working your way up to more complicated ones. Start with these basic dog training commands to get off to a promising start:
Command #1: Heel
What are the basic commands to teach a dog? The first one is “heel.”
This command teaches your dog to walk beside you without pulling on the leash. Keep your dog at knee level on your left side. Holding your dog's leash tightly, walk with your left foot first, then call your dog’s name, and give the “heel” command.
Be sure to have some treats handy when your dog walks correctly beside you. Again, the goal of this command is for your dog to walk with you, not behind or before you. In the beginning, your dog is likely to walk ahead of you so you should start with a short leash. Every time your pet speeds up, gently tug at the leash and guide your dog into falling back and following your pace.
Command #2: Sit
The trick in teaching your dog this basic command is to hold your pet's favorite treat towards the back of its head. Say the command "sit" followed by your dog's name. Most dogs will get the idea and sit automatically, but if your dog needs a little help, you can tap or nudge its butt before issuing the command.
Always make sure you indulge your pet with praises and treats when it obediently does what you want it to.
Pull Quote 2 of 3: Heel, sit, stay, and come are foundational commands. Once your dog learns them, you can move on to more complicated tricks.
Command #3: Stay
This command teaches your dog to stay and not move from its current location. The best way to teach your dog this command is to start from a sitting position.
Once your dog is seated, stand in front of your dog and show your open palm. You will use this gesture with the spoken command "stay." Let your dog remain in the same position for 10 seconds and increase the time for keeping still gradually.
You can then come up with a command to release it like "okay!” which would signal that your dog can now move freely.
Remember to reward your pet with snuggles and a treat when they succeed.
Command #4: Come
Among the dog training basic commands that are super useful is "come." When your dog learns it, it will approach you on command. This is a command that can help keep your dog safe. Instead of rushing into traffic and other dangerous areas, you can call your dog to come to you and keep it from harm.
Use a non-retractable leash for this lesson and ensure you have a leash that is at least six feet long. From the "sit" or “stay” command, tell your dog to "come" to you. You can encourage your dog to move toward you by gently pulling the leash or beckoning it with your hand.
Once your dog comes to you and stays by your side or in front of you, you can do another command of "sit" or "stay." Again, remember to let your dog know it is doing an excellent job!
These four basic dog commands should be taught in this order. Once your dog has mastered these basic dog training commands, you can move on to more complicated ones like “down,” "turn around," "shake hands," and more. As you can see, there are plenty of tricks to teach your dog!
What Are Some Dog Training Tips for Beginners?
Dog training can be challenging. While teaching dog training basic commands, here are some handy tips and reminders:
- Always say your dog’s name before issuing a command. This will ensure that you have your dog's attention before asking it to do something.
- Keep your commands short and simple. These will be easier for your dog to recognize and follow.
- Use a normal but authoritative tone when giving commands. Speaking louder won’t make a difference.
- Give the command only once. If your dog doesn’t do it, help your dog by reinforcing the expected action.
- Be consistent with the command and the expected action.
- Make learning fun and stimulating for your pet.
- Never punish your dog because it failed to follow a command.
- Learning takes time and each dog has its own learning pace so don't rush the process.
- Always use timely positive reinforcement during training.
- Never give up trying. Your dog will eventually reward your hard work and patience by learning.
- Food is always a good motivator for dogs. Instead of regular treats, you can use special and healthier treats during training. Are peaches good for dogs? Yes, they are so cut a few slices of the fruit that you can use as doggie rewards.
Pull Quote 3 of 3: Positive reinforcement is one of the most effective and humane ways to teach your dog new tricks. It involves rewarding your dog with treats, praise, and pets.
Why Are Basic Dog Training Commands Essential?
When training dog basic commands and your dog learns them, it’s an incredibly rewarding experience for you and your pet.
In addition to having a dog that receives lots of praise and is readily welcomed by all, you’ll be raising a dog that recognizes and respects structure and order. To teach a dog basic commands is to help ensure that it will be on its best behavior whether it’s inside or outside your home.
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