5 Essential Commands Taught In Dog Obedience Classes

Dog obedience classes are an essential part of every pet owner’s responsibility to ensure that their furry friend is well-behaved and safe. Basic commands, including sit, down, come, stay, and leave it, are usually taught in these classes. Training puppies with positive reinforcement and learning proper training techniques can help prevent unwanted behaviors and foster mutual respect between them and their owners. In turn, owners feel more secure knowing their dogs are less likely to encounter dangerous situations in everyday life. In this article, we will delve into the five essential commands taught in dog obedience classes and the importance of taking this step towards a well-trained dog.

Sit Command

The Sit Command is one of the most essential obedience commands taught in dog training classes. It is not only crucial for your dog’s safety but also lays the foundation for learning more complex commands. Below, we will outline how to teach your dog the Sit Command and offer helpful tips to guide them into position.

Step-by-step process:

1. Start by holding a treat and let your dog smell it.

2. Slowly lift the treat over your dog’s head, leading their nose up and back. This will cause your dog to sit down.

3. As soon as your dog’s haunches hit the ground, say “Sit” and give them the treat along with lots of praise.

4. Practice this repeatedly until your dog starts sitting immediately upon lifting the treat over their head.

Transitioning to verbal cue:

1. After your dog consistently sits with the treat lure, you can start using a verbal command.

2. At the same time you lift the treat, say the word “Sit”. Your dog will start to associate the word with the action of sitting.

3. Slowly reduce the use of the treat lure, while increasing the use of the verbal cue so your dog starts responding to the sound of the word instead of just the sight of the treat.

Guiding your dog into position:

1. Place a treat in close proximity to your dog’s nose.

2. Move your hand down and back, towards their tail, just between their front legs. This will prompt them to sit down.

3. Always use a happy voice and lavish praise when they respond correctly.

Remember to practice Sit Command in a variety of circumstances and locations. Use high-value treats during training sessions and switch up the treats to avoid boredom.

Teaching your dog the Sit Command is a rewarding experience, both for you and your furry friend. A well-trained dog is happier, safer and more enjoyable to be around. On a happy note, it is recommended to practice Sit Command a couple of times every day to ensure your dog retains the knowledge over time.

Down Command

Once your dog has mastered the Sit command, it’s time to move onto the Down command. Remember to ensure your dog has had enough exercise before starting the training session, as a tired dog will be more receptive to learning commands.

To start, hold a treat in front of your dog’s nose and slowly move it towards the floor while saying “Down.” Be patient and wait for your dog to lie down completely. As soon as they do, reward them with the treat and praise them. It’s important to make sure they are fully lying down, and not just crouching, before you reward them.

If your dog struggles with the Down command, try moving the treat down more slowly or breaking the command down into smaller steps. For example, if your dog only crouches instead of lying down completely, click and reward for any downward movement, and gradually build up to a complete lay down. You can also practice on a different surface, such as grass or carpet if your dog is struggling on a slippery surface.

It’s important to stay patient and persistent while teaching the Down command. Some dogs may take longer to learn this command than others, so it’s important to remain consistent with training. Remember to always reward your furry friend when they get it right, as treats and praise will help motivate them to continue learning and perfecting the command. With time and practice, your dog will confidently master the Down command alongside the Sit command.

Come Command

The ‘Come Command’ is a crucial command that every dog owner should teach their furry friend. It’s an essential part of obedience training, as a reliable recall can save your dog’s life and prevent them from potentially dangerous situations.

Teaching your dog the ‘Come Command’ is a process that requires patience and consistent practice. It is vital to use positive reinforcement training methods and high-value treats to motivate your pup to follow the command.

To start training, choose a quiet area with no distractions for your pup. Call your dog’s name and combine it with the ‘Come’ command. It’s important to use a happy, enthusiastic voice to encourage your dog to come to you. If your pup approaches you, celebrate their good behavior with lavish praise and a tasty treat.

If your dog is new to this command, you can use a leash attached to a harness to prevent them from running off. Start by walking a few steps backward and calling your pup’s name with the ‘Come’ command. Once your dog reaches you, reward them with high-value treats and positive reinforcement.

It is crucial to avoid using the ‘Come’ command in negative situations and always make it a positive and rewarding experience for your furry friend. Consistent practice and patience are the key elements towards achieving a reliable recall with your dog.

Stay Command

The “Stay” command is one of the essential commands taught in dog obedience class. Before you start teaching the “Stay” command, it is important to ensure that your dog is able to sit on command.

To begin, instruct your dog to sit in a quiet and distraction-free location. Once your dog is in a sitting position, hold your palm out in front of them and firmly say “Stay”. While doing so, make sure to maintain eye contact with your dog.

To train your dog to stay in place, give them treats and praise when they remain still for a short period of time. As they become familiar with the command, you can gradually increase the distance between you and your pet. You can start with a distance of just a few steps and gradually move further away from your dog.

As you increase the distance, you can also increase the time that your dog is asked to stay. To further reinforce the stay command, introduce a few distractions like toys or treats to see if your dog remains in place. Ensure that your dog stays in the sitting position, in spite of any distractions.

Use a release word like ‘OK’ or ‘Free’ to signal your dog that they can move and praise them once they do. Be sure to reward your dog with treats and positive reinforcement every time they obey the “Stay” command.

Remember, like any new behavior being taught, teaching the “Stay” command requires patience, consistency, and lots of praise. With time and practice, your dog will learn to obey the “Stay” command, even in challenging situations.

Leave It Command

The Leave It command is a crucial basic command that every dog should learn. It teaches your dog to avoid picking up or ingesting harmful items, as well as preventing them from chasing after other animals or getting into dangerous situations. Here are some step-by-step instructions on how to teach your dog the Leave It command:

1. Start by placing a desirable object on the floor in front of your dog.

2. As your dog approaches the object, say “Leave it” in a firm, but calm voice.

3. If your dog continues to approach the item, use your foot or body to block access to it.

4. Once your dog backs off from the object, immediately praise and treat them with a high-value reward.

5. Repeat the exercise several times until your dog consistently avoids going for the item on the floor.

6. Gradually increase the difficulty by using more tempting objects, and also start incorporating off-limits household items such as shoes or remote controls.

7. Once your dog has mastered the Leave It command with household items, start using it to deter chasing after animals or to avoid ingesting poisonous plants on walks.

8. Remember to always reward your dog for obeying the Leave It command, as positive reinforcement is key to successful training.

It’s important to keep in mind that the Leave It command is not meant to be used for punishment or scolding, but rather as a preventative measure to keep your dog safe. With consistent practice and positive reinforcement, your furry friend will become proficient in avoiding off-limits items and behaviors.


Consistent training and practice are key to achieving success with dog obedience. Training is an ongoing process that requires patience, dedication, and consistency to ensure that your furry friend can learn and retain the essential commands covered in this article. However, it’s important to keep in mind that every pet is unique and may require customized training to suit their individual needs and personality. As you continue exploring different training techniques, resources, and support, remember that the ultimate goal is to have a well-trained dog that can navigate everyday life and avoid dangerous situations. So keep practicing, keep training, and enjoy the rewarding experience of having a happy, well-trained dog!