Basic commands to have a well-trained dog
¿What exactly are we talking about when we say we want to train a dog? It is very simple: we want to teach them actions such as sitting down, coming to us when we call them…, responding to commands, moulding their personality and demonstrating appropriate behaviour. ¿How can we achieve this? We can summarise it in two basic actions: to reward your dog when it does something right and to reprimand it or ignore it when it does something wrong. You will see that by training your dog, you will reinforce your relationship.
Here are 4 basic commands:
Approaching. With a leash, place yourself mid-way from your dog, call it by its name, and when it starts approaching you say: “Come!” If it obeys you, reward it with some strokes and a treat.
Sitting down. Keep your dog calm. Take a biscuit and move your dog away a little bit. Then, order it to approach and when it is close, raise the biscuit over its head. When your dog starts sitting, give it the command: “Sit!”
Staying still. Look for a quiet place and make your dog sit. Show it your hand, let your dog lick it and say: “Stay still!” Move away slowly and if your dog moves too, start again until the leash cannot stretch any further.
Lying down. Once your dog has learnt to stay still, make it sit and you kneel next to it. Take your dog by its collar with one hand and show it the reward you are holding in the other hand; put the reward closer to its snout and then place it in front of your dog, so it needs to stretch. While your dog is lowering, you say “Lie down!”; then stay with your dog until it is lying down completely.
In any case, it is very important to remember that the key words you decide to use with your dog must be short, just 1 or 2 words, and pronounced firmly and clearly. Rewards must be given immediately; first, you congratulate your dog and just then give it a biscuit, for instance. You may also take into account that learning a new order may take several days.
If you have any problems, trainers and ethology experts might be of great help. If you detect bad habits or serious behavioural or relational problems in your dog, we recommend you see an expert.