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Basic Commands Introduction Header

This section contains information on how to teach your dog the basic commands that all dogs should know.  If your dog understands these commands, and you as the owner know how to use them, many potential behavior problems are eliminated.  It is important for your dog to learn what behavior is expected of him in both public and private settings.  He needs to learn that actions do have consequences.  If he obeys your commands, he can expect rewards and praise.  If he disobeys, he can expect a correction.


Most of these commands are presented with two possible ways of teaching them.  The reason for this is that dogs, like people, learn in different ways.  In general though, the second method usually involves a leash in some way, so that a quick snap and release correction can be administered.  All that a snap and release correction involves is a quick tug on a leash, usually with a strong verbal correction.  You are not trying to hurt your dog with the snap and release.  Rather, you are trying to get his attention so that he knows he has done something wrong.  This is what a quick snap and release with a leash accomplishes. 


It is a good idea to practice these commands at all times and in all possible situations.  Whether you are in a car, your home, your yard, or a public place, your dog must learn that these commands are in effect at all times.


This last point should be obvious, but I’ll make it anyway.  In all of the training methods, I use my name in the example.  So, I’ll say “Grover,  Heel”, etc.  Obviously, if your dog does not have the good fortune to be named Grover, you should substitute your dog’s name.  Again, I know this is obvious, but I’ve learned in my dealings with people that you need to be as clear as possible with them at all times.  Like dogs (well, other dogs, not me), people can get confused quite easily.


I hope you find these articles useful when you’re training your dog.  Good Luck!




The articles in this section are:


  • Sit and Release
    The commands for sit and release are the two most basic commands you can teach your dog. They are the foundation for all of the other commands your dog can learn

  • Lie Down
    The Lie Down command is another very beneficial command to teach your dog, as it can help calm in in situations in which he might get excited. It is very easy to teach, as well.

  • Come
    When you give the command to your dog to "Come", you want him to stop whatever he is doing and run towards you as fast as possible. This command can actually get your dog out of potentially hazardous situations, so it's a good one to learn.

  • Stay
    The stay command is useful for those situations when you don't want your dog constantly underfoot. It will take some time and patience on your part, but it is a command that any dog can learn.

  • Watch Me
    If you want to train your dog effectively, you have to train him to pay attention to you. This is why the "Watch Me" command is an important one to learn.

  • Let's Go
    When you are walking your dog, you want him to walk with you, not run off in eight different directions. This is where the "Let's Go!" command is helpful.

  • Heel
    With the "Heel" command, you want your dog to stay by your heel no matter what. This is a tricky command to learn ,but it can be taught with a little time and patience.