Training your dog can be a challenging task, even for long-time dog owners. Yes, our families and communities can help. But, sometimes you have to take a step back and study the best practices in training your dog. In this article, we explore the basic commands your dog should follow. We also include valuable tips and resources to help you in training your dog to be the best they can be!
What Basic Commands Should Your Dog Be Able To Master?
There are a few commands a dog should be familiar with in order to be properly trained. These are some of them:
Sit—The Most Basic Command
Telling dogs to sit is usually taught first because it’s the most natural concept for most dogs. It’s also one of the simplest for them to learn, so even pets that have never been trained may pick it up in a few sessions. Because it’s also a transition command, you may go on to other directives once a dog can sit.
Down, or Lay Down—Give It A Rest
This command is useful, regardless if your dog is a high-energy breed or one of the more silent types. It really comes in handy especially during situations that require your dog to tone down its giddiness. The command is a fantastic gateway to more exciting and difficult tricks like rolling over or acting dead since it lets you manage your dog.
Stay, And Be A Good Dog!
If a dog understands how to ‘stay,’ they will not run into the street if they go free, making it one of the most crucial abilities to master for any dog. It’s best to teach it while your dog is tired and hungry, so they don’t become too hyper to concentrate. And be patient: most dogs require at least a few days to comprehend ‘Stay,’ and mastering it might take weeks. Keep a bag of dog treats or kibble ready and practice until your dog is an expert since it protects your dog from harm.
Saying ‘Come’ To Man’s Best Friend
If you want to take your dog off-leash anyplace, they must be able to come when called. It can keep them safe at the dog park if a fight breaks out, get them away from the street if they pull away from the leash, and guarantee they stay nearby whether hiking or just running in the backyard. It’s recommended that ‘Stay’ be taught after the ‘Come’ command, since having the ‘Stay’ skill first makes the process easier. These commands are vital in improving dog behavior outdoors.
Heel—And Walk Your Dog With Ease
Dogs of all sizes should learn to heel or walk gently alongside you, especially if you exercise your dog in congested metropolitan locations with little sidewalk space. For large or strong dogs who naturally pull on the leash, this ability is even more crucial. Walks will be easier and more enjoyable for both your dog and your arm socket if your dog can heel.
‘Get Off!’—A Basic For Visitors
One of the most common dog concerns is jumping on visitors or furniture, so don’t worry if your pup can’t keep four paws on the floor. Turn your back on them as they jump up, grip their paws, and shake a plastic bottle loaded with pennies while saying “Off.” Another tactic can include playing or creating a specific sound that triggers your dog to stop the action on the new visitor. All of these activities deter leaping, so experiment with a few to discover which one works best for your pet.
Telling Your Dog ‘No’ Means No.
Some trainers teach “No” and “Leave It” for somewhat diverse situations, such as when a dog shouldn’t do something and you don’t want your dog to investigate a particular object or environment. To keep things simple, it’s best to stick to ‘No.’ Because explaining the differences may be confusing for both people and animals, ‘No’ is an excellent all-purpose command for whatever you don’t want your dog to do. This command is vital for making your home puppy-proof and preventing your dog from peeing inside the house.
What Resources Are There To Help You In Training Your Dog?
Now, you’ve read about the basic commands that your dog should know by now. However, it’s totally understandable to want help in training your dog. That being said, here are some resources you can use to train your dog!
Online Dog Training Courses
There are a couple of reliable dog training courses available to guide you in training your dog! Here are some of them:
Train Pet Dog.Com is a great resource for training your dog! It has a wide array of content ranging from potty training, adoption, grooming, to diets! Common issues among dog owners such as stopping incessant barking, biting, and basic obedience are also resolved through their resources! Check their site and register for free training resources!
Zak George’s goal is to enhance industry standards by advocating for the most up-to-date scientific knowledge of canine behavior while also balancing this approach with 21st-century ethics. Zak wants to promote the idea that people shouldn’t treat their dogs as members of a pack as a major proponent of positive reinforcement dog training. These tamed creatures, he claims, are nothing like the old wolves from which they descended.
Dog behaviors and antics are something to not be afraid of! SIRIUS Dog Training offers resources like its unique Virtual Puppy Kindergarten and Virtual Dog Training Classes. Created for the comfort and convenience of owners and their pets, their classes are running strong in the online set-up. Their slots are easily accessible but also run out quickly, so check their schedule and sign up now!
Training Books For Dogs
Aside from the online sites and courses, books can do wonders for training your dog! Here are some of them:
The Monks of New Skete are well-known German Shepherd Dog breeders and trainers. The monks provide relevant data on selecting the right dog for you, physical fitness for your pup, appropriate discipline, behavioral problems, and the challenges of having a dog in your area, whether it’s the city, suburbs, or rural areas, and much more in this updated version of their quintessential training book. Whether it’s keeping your dog fit healthy during the summer or keeping them safe and warm in the winter, the monks know best. They stress the importance of communication and understanding when it comes to teaching your dog.
Cesar Millan is a well-known dog trainer in the United States, owing to his National Geographic Channel show Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan. Millan discusses his understanding of dog psychology in his book, describing how behavioral difficulties arise and how they may be resolved. He discusses the difference between discipline and punishment, as well as how to harness your dog’s group instincts to strengthen your connection. Many individuals have found Millan’s book to be useful in understanding their dogs, despite some criticizing his approaches as antiquated and not as effective as more current ones. He also shares tales from his clientele, which include celebrities.
Also available in an accessible audiobook format, this one’s for the owners with relatively stubborn pups! Indeed, some canines are hyperactive, anxious, or have short attention spans. This book is ideal for the owners of such dogs. It includes strategies for obtaining results in one-minute or fewer training sessions, leveraging natural neurochemistry, recognizing when medical assistance is required, refining unreliable behaviors in overexcited dogs, and dealing with fear and aggressiveness. It’s written in a lighthearted, conversational manner that you’ll find enjoyable to read while understanding.
Training Tools And Materials For Dogs
There can also be tools, toys, and materials that you can purchase to make training your dog even easier! Here are some of them:
Tug toys are the most popular among many kinds of dog toys. It allows your dog to use one of its most important assets: its teeth. Tugging is also a fantastic kind of exercise that not only improves bite work but also strengthens muscles from head to tail. Blending a tug-of-war game with the “drop it” instruction sprinkled throughout makes for a wonderful impulse control game!
A GPS chip/tracker dog collar is a tracker device that attaches to a dog’s collar or simply a smart dog collar that uses a GPS system to provide real-time information as to where your dog is. This is really helpful for when you’re training your dog to run and explore outside. You know your dog’s whereabouts while they’re still learning to follow your commands. A dog collar with a GPS chip/tracker might be the difference between you and losing your dog. This surely helps avoid the anguish of having to go to great efforts to reclaim your pet canine.
Products have risen to cater to your dog’s needs. There are dog seat belts for car safety, and now even dog insurance! Another product we should consider: orthopedic dog beds. How does this help in training your dog? It gives your dog a scientifically proven good night’s rest and prevents further health issues in the future.
FAQ’s About Training Your Dog
After all the info you’ve read, you may still have some questions in mind. Here are some common inquiries we encounter with regards to training your dog:
When Should You Start Training Your Dog?
A: Although puppies have short attention spans, you may expect them to learn basic obedience cues like “sit,” “down,” and “stay” as early as seven to eight weeks of age. Formal dog training has usually been postponed until the age of six months. Basically, teaching your pup at an early age is optimal.
Is It Ever Too Late To Train Your Dog?
A: It’s never too late to educate an older dog to listen and follow, even if some mature dogs learn more slowly. Adult dogs can learn more quickly than pups because they are less frequently sidetracked.
Can You Self-Train A Dog?
A: There are some fundamental skills that will make your life with your dog more pleasurable, as well as the dog’s life with others more comfortable. You may train your dog yourself in a variety of ways. It isn’t rocket science to train a dog. Even if you send your dog to a trainer, you still have to live with them.
How Do I Train My Dog To Walk Beside Me?
A: Use a clicker or utter “yes” as soon as your dog approaches you, then praise. After a few repetitions, stop calling them and pointing to your side, and let your dog start coming up to you freely. Each instance your dog gets into position, mark it and give them a treat.
Is Paying For Dog Training Worth It?
A: Rather than enrolling their puppies in “obedience school,” some experienced dog owners depend on their own knowledge when adding a new canine to their group. Dog trainers, on the other hand, agree that every dog (and even seasoned dog owners) may benefit from their knowledge. However, make sure that you reinforce the same tactics at home consistently, so that the positive effects on your dog’s behavior truly manifest.
In totality, training your dog is one of the most challenging yet fulfilling responsibilities you have as a dog owner. What we’ve written here has surely helped you!