10 Essentials Commands You Must Teach Your Dog

What dogs learn about commands for the very first time is the most essential lesson to be able to live independently although they live close to their human family guard. Those basic commands training can be very helpful for both the dog owner and the dog itself. The method or in this case the command words to apply the lesson is varied based on the owners. However, there are 10 essentials commands you must teach your dog as below.

1.”Watch me”
5. “Heel”
7. “Off”
8. “Stand”
9. “No”
10. “Free/OK/Break”

What to do while teaching those essentials commands:

-You must be very patience
-You must do it regularly
-Do not push your dog too hard in the beginning
-Do not punish your dog
-Choose place with lesser distraction for your dog
-Keep it simple and quick
-Give treats for a reward
-Involve yourself
-Repeat the old commands

Watch me

This command is very basic to get your dog’s attention and as a way to teach him following commands. You must keep your eye contact on his eyes while saying the command. Keep the treat in your palms and cross it between your dog’s nose and his head and stop at your eye level so that he will see your eyes. Repeat the  command until he get it and finally give him the treat.


Similar to the “watch me” command, this “sit” command also using the treat near to his nose and upward to make him stand. And while he is stand to get the treat, you can command him to “sit” while bringing your hand with the treat downward. Repeat the practice until he understand when and how to sit before finally give the treat. Increase the time from a second to couple of second to sit and release him by saying “OK” or “Break” to let him free. This command can prevent dogs in trouble. You may want to read more about how cold is too cold to let your dog walk outside?


Next, you move the hand along the floor to provoke him to follow the food in a laid on position. The moment the dog is laid on, you give the command “Down” and give him the treat.

This is quite tough command because being down is a passive position. The trick used to teach him is similar to the two command above by using a closed hand filled with treats close to his nose. Move your hand up and very down so the dog will follow the hand.


This command is different from sit because your dog can stay in any position while staying in place. You can still the treat inside your palm trick to make your dog follow the direction of your hands, in this case to stay. Start by asking him to sit and leave him. Say “no” or “stop” immediately if he is following you. Repeat the task and give him treat when he eventually understand. If you wonder, you can also read about 5 signs that your dog truly respect you


Put a leash on the dog while teaching this command. The best side of the dog is on your left, however you can choose whichever side best for you. Say the command “heel” in lower tone. Then you walk for few steps and he must follow.

Get his attention by clapping your hand if he is distracted while still keeping the treat. Make sure he is not lag or too fast leading forward. Ask him to stop by saying “ok/ free/ break”. This command is to make your dog walk beside you. The advanced level of this command is used to behave your unleashed dog.


Similar to sit, you teach your dog to wait not to move or run away. You can teach him using the word “wait” and to free him using the usual word “ok”/”free”/”break”. Teach him to wait in front of the house by commanding him to sit in front of the closed door.

Then, show your high five palm as a sign to wait while saying “wait”. Slowly open the door and when he rushed in, close the door and stop him and say the command. Repeat until he gets when to wait and when to move. The goal is when he will not move in even when you open the door widely unless you command to come in.

This is useful to prevent your dog get in trouble in public doors or any entrances which are probably dangerous. Read more about Is it safe to leave an indoor dog stay outside at night?


You can teach your dog to come towards you with his leash. Stand few feets away from your dog and command him to come while pulling the leash gently. Repeat until he understand that he needs to come when you say the command. If the dog gets what to do, give him a treat. Repeat the training daily and you need to be very patient.

Come command is very useful to prevent your dog to be lost or chasing other dogs. You can also protect him with this command from any danger near him.


This command asks your dog to be off of someone or some things near him. Start with keeping the treat in your both closed palm, move the palms near his nose so he can smell the treat. Wait until he back off because he can’t get the treat. So this time, say the command “off” while opening the treat. Repeat the command everyday plus the old commands you have taught him so that he will not forget the old commands. You might want to read about 8 purrfect dog breeds to pet as outdoor dogs


This command can be taught by asking the dog to “Sit” and then getting a treat in your hand that you must put close to the dog’s nose upward. Make your dog follow your hand up while you say the command “stand” until he stand. When he stand, give the treat.

Repeat the training daily although he already understood so that your dog won’t forget his commands. This command is helpful if your dog is being examined in the vet.


This command is very important to prevent the dog doing unwanted actions anywhere. Train him while still wearing his leash. Put dog treats somewhere near the dog, and wait until he tries to get the treat. Now, when he tries to get the treat, say “no” and pull the leash a little and take away the treats. When he comes and watches you, give him the treats. Do this training everyday along with the other commands although he seems to master it fast.


Those command are essential used to free the dog or to end the main commands such as heel, stand, stay and the others. Choose one of those three commands and use it consistently so that your dog will not be confused. This command is important to give the dog understanding when to move or do other tasks after another.

To conclude, those 10 essential commands you must teach your dog are the most basic and important. Those commands must be taught daily with care and a lot of patience.  You can also read How to Teach Your Dog Not Afraid of Other Dog