5 Basic Commands to Teach Your Puppy

  • 07/02/2018

Anyone who has tried training their own puppy do will tell you it is a tough albeit exciting task. Whether you are training one of the easier to learn breeds such as Labradors and German shepherds or the tough-to-train Pekingese and beagles a lot of work and patience goes into the process.   Expert dog trainers now believe helping the dog understand basic commands including sitting, staying, lying down, coming and heeling goes a long way in improving your relationship.  

What to Know About Dog Commands

These basic commands establish a line of clear communication and lay the strongest foundation for further training.  By introducing these commands early to your puppy, you will not only establish a conflict-free relationship but also boost the safety of your puppy. 

Below are the 5 basic commands you should teach your dog with a short description of how to do it right:

1.      “Sit”

Sitting reflects politeness and once this command is learnt, it is easy to control your dog. To teach and reinforce this command, hold a treat close to the dog’s nose, give the command ‘sit’ and move your hand up and then down as the dog lowers its bottom. If the back is still up, put your other hand on its rump and softly guide it into a sitting position as you repeat the command and give the bite to the puppy. Repeat the lesson until your puppy learns how to calm down and sit when this command is given.

2.      The “Heel” Command

This is one of the most complicated commands to teach because dogs are naturally inclined to jump around and jog when walking beside you. Hold the lead and a treat with your right hand but let the puppy be on your left side. First, command your puppy to sit and then talk one or two steps slowly. Tell the dog to “heel” as it sits up. If it rushes past you, gently pull the leash and command it to sit again. Try this until the dog learns to walk along. Give a treat as a reward.

3.      “Come”

This is a crucial skill which takes the dog out of trouble and back to the safety of your hands. Make sure your puppy is on a long leash and have a treat in your hand. Create a short distance and crouch to the puppy’s level and make the command “come” as you gently pull on the leash. Give a treat every time your puppy responds correctly. Take off the leash and now try the same command.

4.       “Lie Down”

This command requires the dog to stay in a submissive position and it is perfect for obedience training. Start with your puppy in a sitting position and hold a nice smelling treat to its nose as you give the command “down”. Lower the treat towards the floor until its bum and elbows are on the floor. Give positive reinforcement through a word like “yes”, a treat and a pat. Repeat the sequence.

5.      “Stay”

To get this right, make sure your puppy has mastered the “sit” command. Give this command and move away from away from the dog as you give the command “stay”. Give a treat every time your puppy remains in position. Repeat the sequence as you increase the number of steps you are moving back.

Remember the following; set out a correction and reward system, be patient, be systematic, make learning sessions short, fun and simple, don’t push too hard, avoid punishing your puppy and introduce new commands only after the older one is well understood. These commands will improve communication and help you control the behaviour of puppy very early in its life. 

Author Bio:

Scarlett Gibson is a technical writer at MyEssayGeek. Being an animal lover, she has been volunteering in a zoological sanctuary more than 3 years. 

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