5 Basic Obedience Commands You Should Teach Your Dog


Sit is the most basic obedience command every dog should know. It’s also incredibly simple to teach. Use a treat to lure your dog into a sitting position. When your dog sits to reward him. Once your dog gets what you expect from him and starts to sit without you luring him, say “sit” and reward when he sits.

    Lay down

    Lay down is another very basic obedience command. It can be taught in a similar way as “sit”. Lure your dog into a position and reward when your dog lays down. Start adding a vocal cue once your dog knows what to do without you luring him.

    Loose leash walking

    Loose leash walking is something that a lot of people struggle with. The best thing you can do is to start working on it as soon as you get your dog. It’s never too soon. By simply rewarding your dog for staying and walking next to you-you will reinforce the behavior of loose leash walking. It’s important to not move with your dog when he pulls. Stay still or change direction when you feel a tension on the leash. That way your dog will soon learn that pulling on the leash is not what pays off.


      A recall is also something you should start working on the minute you bring your dog home. A reliable recall will make your life so much easier and the time you spend with your dog more enjoyable. The key is to make the environment less interesting than yourself. Always have toys with you when walking a puppy and also reward your dog every time he comes to you when called. A very long leash is also recommended so that you can have your dog under control until the recall is 100% reliable.

        Leave it

        Leave it can be a life-saving command. It can stop your dog from eating something toxic or from chasing a car. Leave low value treats on the ground and say “leave it”. When a dog leaves the treats, reward him with a higher value treats. Once he understands the “leave it” cue you can start generalizing. Use it to stop him from playing and to stop him from chasing cats. Leave it simply means: “stop doing whatever you are doing and give me attention”. Practice a lot and work on generalization so that your dog will be ready and reliable in real life situations.

        Always break the learning process into several smaller sessions. When you or your dog get frustrated, stop the training and try again next time. Keep it simple and fun! Take a step back and work from there if it gets too hard for your dog. Reward your dog when he obeys and never punish him for disobedience - he might simply not be ready yet and needs more time and patience. 

        Be careful with the rewarding

        Rewarding is the most common and successful way how to train your dog, but it has rules. Pet owners should beware that treats are a primary source of obesity in dogs, even among active dogs. Caloric intake from treats should not exceed 10% of the dog’s recommended caloric needs, and high-value treats should be fed sparingly.  

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        Please note: all dogs should be treated as individuals. The Actijoy™ blog is for educational and entertainment purposes only. In the case of emergency, always seek qualified healthcare from a local veterinarian or emergency facility. Actijoy™ blogs are not designed to treat, diagnose, or prescribe medication for your pet.

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