Top 10 Command to teach your German shepherd - GSD Colony

Top 10 Command to Teach Your German Shepherd

Want your German Shepherd to learn some cool tricks, but you don't know which trick he should learn first? Let’s see what are the 10 most popular tricks with the German shepherd. 

Case Study of learning your dog new tricks

The survey showed that 57.6% of those who trained on their own said their dogs know at least three tricks, but that number is only 49.2% for those who attended one puppy class. 

Before someone sets out to teach your German Shepherd new tricks, make sure your dog is completely healthy. Many tricks require body positions and movements that are not completely natural. Please, do not ask your dog to do something that appears to hurt or make it uncomfortable.

German shepherd funny image

Command number 1: Name Recognition

Purpose of the command: to address your German shepherd dog properly while teaching commands.

If you have decided that your German shepherd is called Max (example name), that doesn’t mean your German shepherd knows his name is Max. This trick mostly dogs learn first. It will be easier to teach your dog new tricks if he pays attention when you call him by name. An obvious sign that your dog responds well is if they stare or look at you upon calling their name. Don’t forget to provide a reward or affection when they get it right.

Command number 2: Leave it or No

Purpose of the command: teach your dog what to pick up and what to leave.

As we know, the dog is the ultimate machine for biting or eating everything… We want to control that of course, maybe sometimes he'll chew something that's not safe for him. Begin by holding treats on both hands. Gradually move the first hand or treat to your pooches’ face to trigger them to lick or sniff at the treat, then say the ‘leave it’ or ‘no’ command.

Whenever your dog is trying to grab the first treat from your hand, do not give it to them. Give the second treat from the other hand when your dog finds no interest in the first treat anymore. It all takes practice, as well as new tricks. Repeat this activity until your dog learns it properly. 


Command number 3: Wait

Purpose of the command: teach your dog to wait for you in a certain place.

This trick from our experience is easiest to teach your dog when your dog is in front of your car or closed door. Execute this task by giving him the well-known "sit" command. Open the palm of your hand and then say the “wait” command.

Repeat this activity until your German shepherd learns it properly. At first, he will surely be excited and probably won't sit for long, but have to stay calm :)

German shepherd lying on the ground after dog command

Command number 4: Heel

Purpose of the command: to teach the dog to be well-behaved when you are beside them.

You can start this command by holding the German shepherd’s leash with your right hand. Let your dog stay on your left side. Using your left hand, hold the treat and guide your dog while walking or instructing them to sit.

Give the ‘heel’ command. Make a few steps while guiding your dog at your side. Praise your dog or give him or her a treat.

Command number 5: Stand

Purpose of the command: this trick can help you when your dog needs to stand during brushing the dog or examined by the veterinarian.

Start learning your German shepherd this trick by giving him the command “sit”. With a treat in your hand, move it towards your German shepherd’s nose forward then down.

Following the direction of your hand holding the treat, move your hand forward until your German shepherd assumes a standing position. Then say the “stay” command and reward your furry friend with praise or a treat.

German shepherd stands on the back legs

Command number 6: Take it or Drop it

Purpose of the command: to train your German shepherd to drop the object they have taken.

To execute this command, start by giving the ‘take it’ command when your dog opens its mouth and is willing to grab or catch the object. Give them time to play with the object then gradually introduce another object which is completely the same as the first one.

Creating an impression that it provides the same value to your dog, will trigger your dog to move towards the second object and grab it. Once your Dog dropped the first one, give the ‘drop it’ command. Say the ‘take it’ command when your dog catches or grabs the second object. Reward your dog and practice this activity until they learn it properly.

Command number 7: Watch me or Look

Purpose of the command: to guarantee that your dog’s attention stays or focuses on you.

This command is executed by offering your dog a treat in your closed hand. Slowly bring your hand with the treat towards your German shepherd nose and then slowly bring your hand back towards your face.

Once you get your  German shepherd’s full attention while establishing eye contact, say “look” or “watch me” command. If your German shepherd doesn’t look at you, don’t give up, do it again. When your dog obeys you, reward him with a treat or praise.

German shepherd gives paw to the woman with dog ball

Command number 8: Come 

Purpose of the command: to signal your German shepherd to come back to you.

Start learning your German shepherd this command by putting a collar and leash on your GSD. Give your dog space, allow him to move away from you, but still hold the leash (the longer the leash, the better). Slowly pull the leash towards you and say "come". When you see that dog was coming towards you, stop pulling the leash. After successful command, reward him!

Command number 9: Sit

Purpose of the command: to calm your German shepherd down.

You need some yummy treats. Take some nice treats in your hand, have your dog in a standing position and just lure your dog into the sit position (move the hand containing the treats towards your dog). Your dog will probably sit because he expects sweet treats. After that, try without treats, and when he sits, then you can reward him with treats.

Command number 10: Down or Lie Down

Purpose of the command: to calm down your German shepherd and address some dog’s behavioral issues.

There are many ways to teach your dog, but you can start with a collar and leash. Say “sit” command (if your dog doesn’t know the “sit” command, it is better to learn it first). After your dog sat down, easily put your leg on a leash to pull your dog to the grown and say “sit”. Every time when your German shepherd lies down, reward him with a treat and praise.

German shepherd with tongue out

At first, it will seem impossible to teach your German shepherd new tricks, but everything requires a lot of attention, patience, and practice. These are not the only tricks to learn your German shepherd these commands, but they are simple and do not require any additional equipment. 

Top training German Shepherds commands.

Now when you know which commands you should teach your German Shepherd, are you ready to explore more?

To have a perfectly trained German Shepherd, you also must work on yourself, not only on your dog.

We had also prepared for you a blog were we talked about regular German Shepherd Commands, and Schutzhund German Shepherd commands. You will find in an article two PDF files, which you can download absolutely for free.

If you're serious about training your German Shepherd, then we highly recommend you to read this article.

Recommendation: German Shepherd Training Commands (+Free PDF)

Do you wanna know how looks a full trained German Shepherd Dog?

Training your German Shepherd Dog can be really stressful and a nightmare... but that hard work will always pays out! We had prepare for you special video how looks like a full trained German Shepherd Dog.

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