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Puppy Care Learning “Down, “Heel”

and “Stand”

Learning “Down”

The “Down” command is the perfect way to relax your puppy after energetic activity and gives you the chance to relax as well. If you want to read or watch TV, your puppy can lie next to you while you pet him.

• For this command, it’s best to start your puppy in the “Sit” position.
• Stand in front of your puppy. Put a treat near his nose, then let him sniff or lick it to get his attention.
• Say “Down” and then using the treat, lure your puppy’s nose towards the ground and out along the floor in your direction. Most dogs will follow your hand and then lie down in an attempt to get the treat.
• Praise him when he’s down, by saying “yes” to reinforce the command. Keep him there using treats and encouragement. With time, your dog will learn what you’re asking of him.
• Release him from the command with an “ok”. Praise him some more for doing so well.
• Practice this exercise a few times a day for about 5-10 minutes at a time.

Learning “Heel”

Puppies love to go for walks, but nobody likes being pulled or tugged. This goes for both of you. A well-mannered dog is a pleasure to own, and who wouldn’t want that. This command helps your puppy understand what you want and teaches him that you’re in charge.

• Start with the puppy on your left side. Have treats in your hand as an incentive.
• Say “Heel” and walk off together at a brisk pace. Use treats to keep him by your side.
• Talk to your puppy and praise him when he does well.
• If your puppy wanders off, just stop and regain control by using treats and encouragement.
• Once you have him back on your left side, repeat “Heel” and continue forward.
• Practice this exercise a few times a day for about 5-10 minutes at a time.

Learning “Stand”

If it’s raining or snowing outside, you might want to work on your puppy’s “Stand” command rather than “Sit.”

• Start with your puppy sitting or lying down.
• With a piece of food or toy in your hand, lead your puppy’s nose up while repeating the “Stand” command.
• When your puppy is on his hind legs, praise him for his obedience and give him his treat.