Hey there! So you just got a new furry companion and you couldn’t be more excited! But now comes the important part – training. Teaching your puppy basic obedience commands is essential for building a strong foundation of communication and discipline. In this article, we’ll take you through the step-by-step process of training your puppy to respond to some essential commands. From “sit” to “stay,” we’ll cover everything you need to know to get your adorable bundle of fur on the right track. So let’s get started on this exciting journey of teaching your puppy their first commands!

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


1. Choosing the Right Commands

2. Establishing a Positive Training Environment

3. Teaching the ‘Sit’ Command

4. Teaching the ‘Stay’ Command

5. Teaching the ‘Lie Down’ Command

6. Teaching the ‘Come’ Command

7. Teaching the ‘Leave It’ Command

8. Teaching the ‘Drop It’ Command


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. Reinforcing Commands with Positive Reinforcement

10. Maintaining Consistency and Patience



Congratulations on bringing a new puppy into your life! This is an exciting time, and one of the most important things you can do for your furry friend is to provide them with proper obedience training. Teaching your puppy basic commands not only helps them become well-behaved companions, but it also strengthens the bond between you and your new four-legged family member. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll take you through the step-by-step process of training your puppy with basic obedience commands. By following these training steps, you’ll be well on your way to having a well-behaved and happy pup!

1. Choosing the Right Commands

1.1 Identifying Basic Commands

When it comes to training your puppy, it’s important to start with the basics. Some of the most common and useful basic commands include “sit,” “stay,” “lie down,” “come,” “leave it,” and “drop it.” These commands provide the foundation for effective communication between you and your puppy.

1.2 Customizing Commands to Fit Your Lifestyle

While the standard basic commands are important to teach your puppy, it’s also essential to customize them to fit your lifestyle. For example, if you enjoy going on walks or runs, teaching your puppy the command “heel” can be incredibly helpful. By customizing commands to fit your lifestyle, you can ensure that your puppy becomes a well-rounded and adaptable companion.

1.3 Considering the Puppy’s Breed and Abilities

It’s important to take into consideration your puppy’s breed and abilities when choosing the right commands to teach them. Different breeds may have different natural tendencies and capabilities. For example, a herding breed may excel at learning commands that involve movement or direction. By considering your puppy’s breed and abilities, you can tailor the training to suit their specific needs.

2. Establishing a Positive Training Environment

2.1 Creating a Safe and Secure Space

Before you begin training your puppy, it’s essential to create a safe and secure environment for them. Remove any potential hazards, such as electrical cords or toxic plants, from the training area. This will help prevent accidents and distractions, allowing your puppy to focus on the training process.

2.2 Gathering Training Supplies

To effectively train your puppy, gather all the necessary training supplies. These may include treats, a clicker, a leash, a collar or harness, and toys. Having these items readily available will make training sessions smoother and more efficient.

2.3 Setting Realistic Training Goals

Setting realistic training goals is crucial to your puppy’s success. Break down each command into small, manageable steps. Celebrate your puppy’s progress, no matter how small, and be patient with them as they learn. By setting realistic goals and taking the training process one step at a time, you’ll create a positive and stress-free training experience for both you and your puppy.

3. Teaching the ‘Sit’ Command

3.1 Understanding the Importance of the ‘Sit’ Command

The “sit” command is one of the most fundamental commands you can teach your puppy. It helps establish control and discipline, and it also provides a foundation for other commands. Teaching your puppy to sit on command will make various situations, such as greetings and mealtime, much more manageable.

3.2 Using Treats and Positive Reinforcement

Treats and positive reinforcement are powerful tools when teaching the “sit” command to your puppy. Use small, soft treats that your puppy finds irresistible. Hold the treat close to your puppy’s nose and slowly raise it above their head. As their head naturally follows the treat, their backend will lower into a sitting position. Once they are in a seated position, immediately praise them and offer the treat. Repeat this process consistently until your puppy associates the command with the action of sitting.

3.3 Step-by-Step Training Process

To effectively teach the “sit” command, follow this simple step-by-step process:

  1. Choose a quiet and distraction-free training environment.
  2. Hold a treat close to your puppy’s nose.
  3. Slowly raise the treat above their head, causing their backend to lower into a sitting position.
  4. Once they are sitting, immediately praise them and offer the treat.
  5. Repeat this process multiple times, gradually reducing the reliance on treats.
  6. Introduce the verbal command “sit” when your puppy consistently performs the action without the treat lure.
  7. Gradually phase out the treats, using verbal praise and physical affection as rewards instead.

3.4 Troubleshooting Common Challenges

During the training process, you may encounter common challenges, such as your puppy not responding to the “sit” command or getting up too quickly. To address these challenges:

  • Be patient and consistent; dogs learn at different paces.
  • Break down the training steps into smaller increments to make it easier for your puppy to understand.
  • Use higher value treats or a more enticing reward to increase motivation.
  • Practice in a quiet and distraction-free environment, gradually adding distractions as your puppy becomes more proficient.
  • Adjust your body language and tone of voice to clearly communicate your expectations to your puppy.

4. Teaching the ‘Stay’ Command

4.1 Explaining the Purpose of the ‘Stay’ Command

The “stay” command is crucial for keeping your puppy safe in various situations. It teaches them to remain in one place until given permission to move. Whether it’s at the front door, in a crowded area, or during mealtime, teaching your puppy to stay can prevent accidents and potential dangers.

4.2 Gradually Increasing Duration

To teach your puppy the “stay” command, start by commanding them to sit or lie down. Once they are in the desired position, give the verbal cue “stay” while using a hand signal to reinforce the command. Begin with short durations, gradually increasing the time before releasing your puppy with a release cue, such as “okay” or “free.” Reward your puppy for maintaining the stay position, and remember to take small steps and be patient as you increase the duration.

4.3 Teaching the Release Cue

The release cue is essential when teaching the “stay” command. It signals to your puppy that they are free to move and helps to prevent any confusion. Choose a simple and consistent release cue, such as “okay” or “free,” and use it consistently each time you want your puppy to end the stay command.

4.4 Reinforcing Stay in Different Environments

Once your puppy has mastered the “stay” command in a controlled environment, it’s important to reinforce this behavior in various real-life scenarios. Gradually introduce distractions, such as other people or animals, and practice the stay command in different environments. This will help your puppy generalize the command and remain obedient regardless of the situation.

5. Teaching the ‘Lie Down’ Command

5.1 Benefits of the ‘Lie Down’ Command

The “lie down” command is a valuable obedience command that provides your puppy with a relaxed and submissive position. It can be particularly useful in situations where you want your puppy to settle down, such as during mealtime or when guests are visiting. Teaching your puppy to lie down on command helps establish control and promotes calm behavior.

5.2 Using Luring and Shaping Techniques

To teach your puppy the “lie down” command, you can use a combination of luring and shaping techniques. Hold a treat close to your puppy’s nose and slowly move it towards the ground. As your puppy follows the treat, their body will naturally lower into a lying position. Once they are lying down, offer verbal praise and give them the treat. Repeat this process consistently until your puppy associates the verbal command “lie down” with the action of lying down.

5.3 Adding Distractions and Distance

As your puppy becomes proficient in the “lie down” command, it’s important to add distractions and increase the distance between you and your puppy. Gradually introduce distractions, such as toys or other people, to test your puppy’s impulse control. Additionally, practice the command from different distances, gradually working up to being able to give the command from across the room.

5.4 Troubleshooting Resistance to Lying Down

If your puppy resists lying down, there are several troubleshooting techniques you can try:

  • Use higher value treats or rewards to increase motivation.
  • Practice in a quiet and familiar environment to reduce distractions.
  • Break down the training steps into smaller increments to make it easier for your puppy to understand.
  • Decrease the duration of the down command initially, gradually increasing it over time.
  • Provide physical guidance by gently guiding your puppy into the down position if necessary.

6. Teaching the ‘Come’ Command

6.1 The Importance of Recall Training

Recall training, or teaching your puppy to come when called, is one of the most crucial commands for their safety and your peace of mind. It allows you to have control over your puppy’s movements and helps keep them out of potentially dangerous situations. Teaching your puppy to come on command is a lifelong skill that every dog should learn.

6.2 Establishing a Positive Association

To effectively teach the “come” command, you’ll want to establish a positive association with the command. Use enthusiastic praise, high-value treats, and a playful tone of voice to make coming to you an exciting and rewarding experience for your puppy. Avoid scolding or punishing your puppy when they come to you, as this can create negative associations with the command.

6.3 Practicing in Safe Environments

Start practicing the “come” command in a safe and secure environment, such as your backyard or a quiet park. Use a long leash to ensure your puppy’s safety and prevent them from running off. Begin by calling your puppy’s name followed by the command “come,” and use a happy and inviting tone of voice. When your puppy comes to you, reward them with treats and praise. Gradually increase the distance between you and your puppy, always rewarding them for coming when called.

6.4 Dealing with Distractions and Building Reliable Recall

As your puppy becomes more proficient at coming when called in controlled environments, it’s important to practice in more challenging situations. Gradually introduce distractions, such as other people or animals, and practice the “come” command in different environments. Use a long leash for added control if needed.

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. Consistency, patience, and continued positive reinforcement will help you build a reliable recall in any situation.


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. Teaching the ‘Leave It’ Command

7.1 Understanding the Purpose of ‘Leave It’

The “leave it” command is vital for your puppy’s safety and well-being. It teaches them to ignore or avoid objects, substances, or behaviors that could be dangerous or inappropriate. Whether it’s dropping a potentially harmful object or not chasing after a squirrel in the park, the “leave it” command is a valuable tool for keeping your puppy out of harm’s way.

7.2 Introducing ‘Leave It’ with Food

To start teaching the “leave it” command, begin with food as the initial distraction. Show your puppy a treat in your closed hand and say the command “leave it.” Your puppy may try to sniff or paw at your hand, but ignore their attempts. When they stop trying and divert their attention away from your hand, praise them and offer an alternative treat as a reward. Repeat this process consistently until your puppy understands that “leave it” means to ignore the treat in your hand.

7.3 Expanding ‘Leave It’ to Other Objects

Once your puppy understands the concept of “leave it” with food, you can begin expanding the command to other objects or situations. Start by using different items your puppy may show interest in, such as toys or household items. Repeat the process of showing the item, saying “leave it,” and rewarding your puppy for diverting their attention away from it. Gradually increase the difficulty by using more enticing objects or introducing movement.

7.4 Generalizing ‘Leave It’ to Different Scenarios

To ensure your puppy understands the “leave it” command in various scenarios, practice in different environments. This may include outdoors, during walks, or when encountering new people or animals. By consistently reinforcing the command and rewarding your puppy for complying, they will learn to generalize the “leave it” behavior and make safe choices even when faced with tempting distractions.


Congratulations! You’ve now learned the step-by-step process of training your puppy with basic obedience commands. Remember to always create a positive training environment, choose the right commands for your puppy’s breed and abilities, and reinforce good behavior with treats and praise. By remaining consistent, patient, and using positive reinforcement, you’ll help your furry friend become a well-behaved and happy member of your family. The journey may have its challenges, but the bond and lifelong benefits of proper obedience training are well worth the effort. Enjoy this special time with your new puppy and have fun on your training adventures together!

By Ed

I'm Ed, the author behind Amor Dog. As a passionate dog lover, I've created this platform to celebrate every bark, wag, and woof. With a focus on small, medium, and large canine companions, I delve into the unique needs and joys of each size category. Whether you're looking for breed insights, care tips, or the latest product reviews, Amor Dog is your dedicated destination. Together, let's embrace the love and wonder of the canine world. Located in Oregon, USA, I welcome all fellow dog enthusiasts to join me on this incredible journey. Contact me at [email protected].

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