Top 10 Basic Dog Training Commands

Basic dog training commands are the building blocks of successful training. While there are many dog training commands, including “sit,” “stay,” “down,” and even “roll over,” most obedience training programs start with just a few commands that are essential for every household dog to know. A combination of simple and fun basic dog training commands can benefit both owner and dog by helping establish leadership, structure and order in the household in a way that simpler gestures cannot. While there are countless commands, these are the top ten basic dog training commands every dog should know, both as a pet and for training purposes.


The most basic dog training command, “come,” is also one of the hardest to teach. Teaching “come” can be difficult for owners because it requires patience and consistency. If you are patient, though, it will be worth it in the end.

To teach your dog this command, start by holding a treat in front of his nose to get him interested in it. Then say “come.” Give him the treat when he comes towards you. It may take some time, but eventually your pet will learn that “come” means he will get a tasty yummy treat!


Sitting and staying are two commands that many dog owners start with because the dog is relatively easy to train to do these.

The first command is “sit.” To teach your dog to sit, say “sit” and use a hand signal or gesture you have agreed upon with your dog. You can also combine the command with a treat. The second command is “stay.” To teach your dog to stay, say “stay” and walk backwards away from your dog while continuing to hold their leash. When you reach a point where you feel comfortable, release them from the stay.

Watch Me or Look At Me

Another basic dog training command every dog should know is “watch me” or “look at me.” This command tells the dog to stop what it’s doing and focus on its owner.

This command is essential because it helps establish dominance. The human is telling the dog that he or she is in charge, and the dog learns to respect his or her new leader.

It also helps establish structure by letting the dog know that there are certain behaviors that are unacceptable in this new environment. The shock of being corrected for jumping on furniture or barking at visitors can help create a more obedient pet.


The wait command is a valuable tool that allows an owner to control the dog’s movements. The wait command is one of the most basic, but it can be very helpful when working with larger breeds or dogs who are easily distracted by other animals, people, or objects in their environment. This command can also be used to prevent accidents when owners are getting ready for the day and don’t want their dog to follow them into the bathroom. By telling their dog to “wait” before entering, owners can save themselves from having to clean up any unwanted messes.

Take it and drop it

This command is the perfect way to teach your pup that when you hand them something, they need to release it into your hand.

Start by presenting the dog with a treat in your hand and closing your fist around it. When the dog takes the treat, quickly open your palm and allow them to take the treat from your palm. This teaches them that when you present them with something, they should drop their current object in order to receive it.

Emergency Recall

An emergency recall is a quick and simple way to call your dog back to you. It’s often called the ‘’Come’’ command we discussed earlier.

When training your dog to come when called, the Emergency Recall is an important command to learn. In many situations, the Emergency Recall command can mean the difference between life and death to your dog. If you have ever had to run into traffic because your dog was in danger, you know why this command is so important. A well-trained recall will not only save your dog’s life but also provide peace of mind that he will always come when you need him.

Down or Lie Down

The “down” command is an essential command for any dog.

This command teaches the dog to lie down on his or her side, with their stomach facing away from you and their legs tucked in. The best way to teach this command is by getting the dog into a down position and then saying “down.” Once your pup is in this position, show your hand to them and say “stay,” while gently rolling your hand over them. As soon as they do it on their own, praise them and give them a treat.

Repeat this process over and over again until they quickly respond to the word “down.” It may take some time to fully train your dog, but patience will pay off in the end when you have a well-behaved pup.


Whether your pup is a rambunctious, energetic young dog or an older canine, bedtime is an important part of the day. Your dog needs plenty of rest in order to grow and learn properly. The basic dog training command for bed is “bed.” It doesn’t matter how you get your pup to their bedding—whether you call them, give them a treat to get them excited about the idea, or just walk away until they follow you. This command should be used whenever it’s time for bed so that your pup associates the word with restful sleep.

Leash training

Leash training is a basic training technique that can be used to train any dog. It’s the first level of leadership and structure that a dog owner needs to establish with their new pup or rescue, and it can also help teach the appropriate behaviors in public. A leash is key for teaching a dog how to walk on a loose leash and how to heel beside you, which is important for safety and control. Dogs need to know this command so they can learn how to behave when on walks or at restaurants.


Heel is one of the most basic dog training commands and is often the first one taught to a new puppy. Heeling at your side teaches your dog how to walk on a loose leash and helps establish you as the leader of the pack. While teaching your dog to heel, keep in mind that there are two types of heeling – tight heeling or loose heeling. Tight heeling means you are holding the end of the leash with your right hand, while loose heeling means you are holding it with your left hand.

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