Dog Commands All Dogs Should Know

Dog Commands All Dogs Should Know

Author WDF Staff


All dogs want to be good dogs; as owners, we need to give them a chance to do so. There aren’t many naturally vicious or dangerous dogs. By teaching them these five basic commands, you will make sure your dog doesn’t become one.

There are plenty of articles talking about aggressive or dangerous dogs and dog breeds, but with proper training and socialization, all dogs have the potential of becoming good and well-behaved. It doesn’t matter if you bought or adopted your dog; they will need basic obedience training.

Obedience will teach them to respect their owners, but it will also keep them out of harm’s way. Some dogs will require more training, and some can learn pretty fast. The best way to understand what kind your dog is is to start training them.

Training speed and ability

Some breeds have a natural predisposition for learning. Those are the breeds that worked closely with humans in the past and were selectively bred with their intelligence and working ability. Some of the best learners are:

You can check the full list of the most intelligent and trainable dog breeds here - The most trainable dog breeds in the world.

Basic training

If you already are a dog owner, there is a strong possibility you started with obedience training without knowing it. All puppies need to learn a few things to be considered pets. They need to be housebroken and understand where they should or should not relieve themselves. They need to know to behave and walk on a leash.

dog laying

Even if these things are not considered classic obedience training things, they will undoubtedly lay the groundwork for further training and development. If you are interested in learning what your dog will learn from obedience training, here is an interesting article that will tell you all about it - What Will Obedience Training Teach Your Dog?

Once you have decided on a training method, you should start teaching these basic dog commands, all dogs should know to become the best possible version of themselves. Here are the 5 dog commands all dog owners should start with.

1. No!

The first thing all dogs should learn is that specific rules need to be followed in a household. If you don’t want your dog jumping on your bed or chewing on your shoes, they need to understand that what they are doing is wrong. For the most effective result, use some delicious treats.

dog command no

How to teach your dog “NO”

Here is how you teach your dog the “NO” command. You need to teach your dog that the “NO” command means no treats for them. Place a treat in your hand, and when your dog starts sniffing it, clearly say the command and close your hand. After your dog starts backing off, reward them and give them the treat. Repeat as many times as necessary.

2. Sit!

Sit is one of the basic commands all well-behaved dogs should know. Even those who are not a part of the dog’s world can see a dog sit on command and think, “This is a well-behaved dog.” That is not far from the truth, and this is a command that is relatively easy to teach.

dog command sit

How to teach a dog to sit

It is important to never force your dog’s bottom in a sitting position. The best way to teach your dog to sit is by using treats. Take their favorite treat and hold it close to their nose. Start moving it slowly over their head, and they will instinctively sit. Give them a treat when their rear touches the ground. After a few repetitions, start introducing the word sit. You can also use a clicker or praise, so they are clear about what is expected from them. 

Clicker training is an effective way to train your dog. Here is an article that can tell you a bit more about it - Getting started with clicker training.

3. Come!

If you ever want to walk your dog off-leash or take them anywhere, your dog will have to understand the command “Come.” It is easily the most important thing they will learn. Luckily, this is relatively easy to teach with treats and a little help, as long as you start them early.

dog come command

How to teach your dog to come

The best way to do it is to have somebody hold your puppy while you sit across from them. Tell your helper to hold the puppy while you call the puppy’s name and saying the command. If your puppy is reluctant, include their favorite toys or treats. Slowly increase the distance and make sure you reward them every time they obey your command successfully. Make sure you train often and keep a positive atmosphere.

4. Stay!

Learning to stay is advanced behavior, but nevertheless an important one. This could be a bit harder to teach because puppies don’t like staying still. However, staying in place can be taught with enough time and repetitions. 

dog command stay

How to teach a dog to stay

Start by getting your dog in a position where they will stay. Slowly put your hand in front of them, say the command, and after the dog stays, give them a treat. After a few successful repetitions, you can start increasing the distance. Don’t try too much too soon. Take your time and make sure the “Stay” command sticks.

5. Down

Teaching a dog the “Down” command might not be as crucial as the stay! or no! commands, but it is still important to control them and keep them out of harm’s way. It is not that complicated if you use clickers and treats.

dog command down

How to teach a dog to lay down

This process should start the same way teaching the sit! command starts. Get your dog in a sitting position, and you can use the treat to get them to lay down. Hold the treat close to the floor and as soon as their belly touches the ground, use the clicker. Make sure your timing is right, and after a few successful repetitions, start including the command “Down.” Repeat until your dog completely understands what you want them to do. You mustn’t force the dog into a laying position. Some dogs find it uncomfortable, and you will confuse them.

These are the five basic commands all good dogs should know. With this easy guide, you can teach your dog these commands in no time. Pretty soon, you will have a well-behaved, obedient dog that will be the best possible pet.

World Dog Finder team

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