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Dog Instructions - Sit
Dog Instructions - Down
Dog Instructions - Heel
Dog Instructions - Stay

Dog Instructions - Come
Basic Canine Manners
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Instructions to Teach to Your Dog
Sit - Down - Stay - Heel

The preferred method for teaching dogs to respond to verbal cues or hand signals is to first SHOW the dog exactly what the word means by using food to lure the dog into the desired position.

Typically, you start with a dog treat in your right hand placed in front of the dog's nose. By moving the treat (often while the dog is licking it) you move the dog's head to move the body into position. 

When the dog is in the desired position, you release the treat.

After you lure the dog into position with food in your hand, try luring without the food in the hand. (Dogs learn body language very quickly.)  Use the other hand (not the lure hand) to deliver the treat. Over time, your dog will learn how to earn treats, and other life rewards.

If the "luring" method is not working to teach your dog what positions or behaviors gain the reward, there are second, third and fourth preferred lessons you can try. Think of training as a puzzle your dog gets to figure out.  Imagine your dog trying different things to gain the reward of choice. Some dogs are motivated to figure out these puzzles to get food, others to get toys or play time. Anything your dog enjoys makes a great motivator for learning. Reinforce learning by calling your dog before going on a walk.  Require your dog to sit for a meal. Have your attention be the reward for your dog settling on a mat.

Begin lessons (learning games) before meals when the dog is hungry. Use a happy voice tone and be sure you relax all your muscle tension. Your dog reads your body better than you do!  With a happy but not forced face, set the tone. "This is going to be fun!" Then, give one treat for free.

It is best to teach the dog to "sit" before teaching the dog to "lie down" or "stay."  You can teach "heel " at any time.

The "sit" instruction means, "Place your rump on the ground."

The "down" instruction means, "Lie down, belly on the ground on all four feet."

The "stay" instruction means, "Freeze in this exact position until released."          

The "heel" instruction means, Walk directly at my left side, at the pace I set.          

The "come" instruction means race to me so you don't miss a favorite reward (not given every time. Give the best rewards for the best responses. ALWAYS praise your dog in a loving voice for coming to you and looking at you. Make it worth your dog's while and do not give your dog any reason to hesitate.)                                                         

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