What dog breeds are the easiest to teach commands and tricks? Border Collies, Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers and Poodles, for example. “Sit!” and “down!” are just two commands that any dog should master. Most dogs are very intelligent. Some dogs are a little too clever, as they start to consider whether it’s worth learning something (“What’s in it for me?”). Other dogs might be lazy learners, and will need more time, patience and repetitions to learn a command.
The right amount of mental challenge, a playful approach and praise are all important. Apart from the standard commands, dogs also like to learn tricks. Some dogs go crazy for tricks, and love “agility” (a dog sport). The dogs listed below are also very gifted breeds when it comes to agility.
What Kinds of Training Are There?
- Basic commands (sit, down, come, stay, heel, out, bed)
- Fun commands (paw, roll over, hide, achoo, circle, play dead)
- Agility (slalom, running through a tunnel, jumping over hurdles)
- Catching and throwing frisbees/balls
- Dog dance (yes, dog dance!)
What’s Important During Training?
There are lots of books and TV shows about dog training. Here are just a couple of the most basic tips:
Be persistent: if a dog is allowed on the sofa one day, but not allowed the next, the dog will be understandably confused. You have to be consistent.
Be confident: who’s in charge here? The dog or the owner? You have to be clear from early on, and say your commands with confidence.
Reward your dog: when your dog obeys a new command, give it a reward. This will make your dog learn commands more easily and remember them better.
Don’t punish: unwanted behavior should be stopped but not punished. Just say “no” calmly yet firmly. It can also help to ignore your dog’s behavior. When a dog doesn’t get any attention from their master, their behavior should hopefully change on its own. It’s best to encourage the behavior you want from your dog. Then they will have no reason to carry on with negative behavior.