Basic dog training commands

Many of my clients ask me, what are the best basic dog training commands to teach my dog to make him better behaved.

Teaching commands is helpful for you to communicate effectively with your dog. That being said, teaching commands does not automatically mean if your dog knows several commands he is going to be a calm, easy going dog (that is a whole other discussion).

So here are the best basic dog training commands.

Come when called: One of the most important commands any dog owner should teach their dog. First of all ensure  Dog training come when called - Bethesda Marylandyour dog recognizes his name. Each time you call your dogs name and your dog comes to you. This response must always be accompanied with a tasty treat or high levels of praise.  This response communicates to your dog, and conditions him to learn each time he hears his name and comes to you he gets rewarded.   


Puppy obedience training Bethesda MarylandSit:  This is one of the basic commands all dogs and puppies learn.  I describe the “sit” command as the “polite command”.  Teaching your dog to “sit” for everyone. That means. your dog sits before you pet him, he sits before you put on his leash.  Sit  before meals….you get the picture.  This helps your dog learn to exhibit calm relaxed behavior.



Down:  Teaching the “down” command is extremely important however it can be a little more challenging to teach. Teaching dog to lay down - Rockville dog training MarylandMost dogs find “laying down” on command threatening as it puts them in a more submissive and vulnerable position. Once you teach your dog to lay down, it is the next step up from teaching a “sit” .  Down promotes a higher level of calm relaxed and trusting behavior.  It can be used easily around children, especially if the dog is a large active dog. Teaching the dog to lay down and relax on the floor with help with safety in many aspects of your living environment.


dog training teaching dog to stay - Kensington MarylandStay: Why use stay?   This command promotes impulse control. Most dogs are fast and constantly on the move. This is a command I teach dogs to master so they will learn to “stay” behind the door threshold until I release the dog to come.  It is an excellent command as it prevents dogs dashing through a dog and running away.  This command can contribute significantly to saving your dogs life – in that if you see a potential danger. You can instruct your dog to “stay” in one position to avoid the danger. It could be traffic, or walking into broken glass etc.


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