How to teach your dog Basic commands

Dogs are fast learners. This can be both good and bad. Good because it means anyone can teach a dog some basics. Bad because a dog can easily learn the wrong things.

If you do not have the money to invest in a dog trainer, reserve one hour every week to train your puppy in some basic obedience commands.

Here are some of them

Name Recognition 

Purpose: to address your dog properly while teaching commands.

Description: Before you train your dog in any activities, teach your dog to recognise its name. This should be the very first step to instil discipline. It is easier to teach your puppy commands and exercises if you address them by name. An obvious sign that yobyur dog responds well is if they stare or look at you upon calling their name. Don’t forget to provide a reward or affection when they get it right.

In

Purpose: To command your dog to go into its kennel or designated lodging place

Description: Be sure to feed the puppy only at the kennel. Put the food in the kennel and say in. As the puppy gets used to this routine. Issue the IN command then give the puppy the food.

Out

Purpose:  To command your dog to go out of a room it should be. Dogs are very inquisitive and will want to know what is in every room in your compound.

Description: With you in the room, issue the OUT command while guiding the dog towards the door. Reward the dog outside. Repeat this every time the dog wanders into the room. Once this is mastered, issue the command while pointing towards the door. Repeat until the dog masters this.

No

Purpose: to tell your dog not to do something they are about to do such as picking something to eat.

Description: Put something edible in a bowl. Place it where your dog would be tempted to reach for it. If the dog moves towards the bait, issue the no command. Keep saying no until the dog loses interest. If this happens, give it a treat or a pet.

Petting the dog/puppy reinforces the desired behaviour.  Make sure to practice the exercise until your dog masters it.

Come

Purpose: to signal your dog to come back to you, keeping your pup out of trouble.

Description: This command should start by putting a collar and leash on your dog. With a certain distance away from your dog, gently pull the dog’s leash towards you then say ‘come’. As your dog manages to move towards you, make sure to give them a treat, praise or affection. Repeat this activity until your dog learns it properly.

Heel

Purpose: to command your dog to walk alongside you while at your left side.

Description: start this command by holding the dog’s leash with your right hand. Let your dog stay on your left side. Using your left hand, hold the treat and guide your Dog while walking or instructing them to sit. Give the ‘heel’ command. Make a few steps while guiding your dog at your side. Praise your dog or give him or her a treat.

Sit

Purpose: to calm your dog down and keep them self-controlled.

Description: This activity is a combination of two commands: sit and stay. Train your dog with the ‘sit’ command first. To execute this exercise, begin by offering your dog a treat. Hold the treat and position it closer to your dog’s nose then gradually move your hand up, so your dog will also move their head and follow the direction of your hand. When the dog assumes the natural sitting position, give the ‘sit’ command. Give your dog a treat or praise and repeat this activity until they master it.

By the time your dog has perfected the ‘sit’ command, teach them the ‘stay’ command. When your dog is in a natural sitting position, open the palm of your hand facing your dog then give the ‘stay’ command. Continue the exercise by gradually moving further away from your dog, then say the ‘stay’ command. Give your dog a treat or praise by doing a great job. Repeat until they have perfected the exercise.

Down

Purpose: to calm down an excited dog and address some dog’s behavioural issues.

Description: This activity is a little challenging as it requires your dog to be in a passive position. Execute this command by offering a treat for your dog. Hold the treat with your closed fist then gently move it closer towards your dog’s nose and face. Let your dog sniff at the object then allow them to follow by gradually moving your hand to the floor. Continue to slide your hand along the floor until your dog assumes a lying position. Once they are down, that is the perfect time to give the ‘down’ command. Offer your dog a treat or praise them for their behaviour. Repeat this exercise until they master it.

Stay

Purpose: to calm your dog down and keep them self-controlled.

Description: This activity is a combination of two commands: sit and stay. Train your dog with the ‘sit’ command first. To execute this exercise, begin by offering your dog a treat. Hold the treat and position it closer to your dog’s nose then gradually move your hand up, so your dog will also move their head and follow the direction of your hand. When the dog assumes the natural sitting position, give the ‘sit’ command. Give your dog a treat or praise and repeat this activity until they master it.

Wait

Purpose: to train your dog not to move or wander.

Description: execute this task by giving the command ‘sit’ when your dog is outside your car or just in front of a closed door. Open the palm of your hand then say the ‘wait’ command. Repeat this activity until your dog learns it properly.

Take It And Drop It

Purpose: to train your dog to drop the object they have taken.

Description: to execute this command, start by giving the ‘take it’ command when your dog opens their mouth and is willing to grab or catch the object. Give them time to play with the object then gradually introduce another object which is completely the same as the first one. Creating an impression that it provides the same value to your dog, it will trigger your dog to move towards the second object and grab it. Once your Dog dropped the first one, give the ‘drop it’ command. Say the ‘take it’ command when your dog catches or grabs the second object. Reward your dog and practice this activity until they learn it properly.

Stand

Purpose: to easily position the dog in cases where standing is required such as brushing the dog or being examined by the veterinarian.

Description: start by giving the ‘sit’ command. With a treat in your hand, move it towards your dog’s nose forward then down. Following the direction of your hand holding the treat, move your hand forward until your dog assumes a standing position. Say the ‘stand’ command and reward your dog with praise or a treat.

 

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