20 Ultimate List of Dog Commands and Hand Signals for Training

Around 16 millennia ago, dogs and people first exchanged greetings. And it has changed the course of history. Humans have since chosen to take on the responsibility of taking care of their puppies and attempting to keep them happier and healthier.

Humans and canines aren’t the same forms of life. They have many distinguishing characteristics, including their choice of language, dietary needs, body temperature function, sleeping habits, and so on.

People presume that there aren’t any bad dogs, just bad pawrents. So, whenever a dog fails to learn and evolve from its grizzly environment and kin, their human pawrents must provide the canine schooling they necessitate.

In order to interact with the dogs in a better manner, pawrents, too, must learn the basics of how to give commands and signals to their pet dogs, during the training sessions.

Ways to Train Your Dogs

Dog training stimulates the mind and fosters tolerance and loyalty, making your dog more lively and well-behaved. Not to forget that it is a great approach to develop your emotional connection further. Here are the two major ways you can train your dog.

Verbal Commands For Dogs

There are basic instructions that every dog must recognise, whether they are puppies or older canines. There are a few vital instructions that your dog should understand to make sure it is a model canine and stays out of risky situations. Each one of the commands serves a specific purpose and will aid in your dog’s daily activities.

Here are a few examples:

1. Recognizing Their Name

Recognizing Their Name
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This command assists you inappropriately addressing your dog when introducing commands.

Teach your pup to identify their nickname before teaching them any other activity. This ought to be the initial step in developing obedience. Teaching them directions and routines will be easier if you address your puppy correctly. If your dog stares or looks at you when you say its name, it is clear that they react effectively. When they’ve gotten it right, don’t forget to offer them a treat or some adoration.

2. Take it or Drop it

To begin executing this order, provide the “take it” order whenever your dog expands their jaws and is ready to grasp or capture something. Allow them time to interact with the item before gradually introducing a second object identical to the original. Presenting the idea that it has the same value as the first object will cause your dog to move toward and catch the second object. Give the ‘drop it’ instruction once your dog has abandoned the first item. Then, call the’ take it’ instruction whenever your dog retrieves or clutches the second thing. Praise your dog and repeat this exercise until they understand it.

3. Come

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This order is critical for signalling your dog to return to you and protect your puppy from mischief.

Begin this instruction by fitting your dog with a collar and a leash. Then, with a given range apart from your dog, gradually draw the dog’s leash closer to you and say, ‘come‘. As your dog approaches closer, reward them with a treat, applause, or love. Practice this technique until your dog understands it completely.

4. Watch Me

This order ensures that your dog’s interest is fixed on you.

This order is given to your dog by holding out a reward with your clenched palm. Next, move your hand nearer to the dog’s nose, then towards its face. Next, give the “watch me” instruction once you have your dog’s complete attention and have an established gaze. Finally, give your dog a goodie or applause as a prize.

5. Sit-Stay

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This instruction aids in the calmness and self-control of your dog.

This task combines two orders: sit and stay. Begin by teaching your dog to sit. Start this activity by giving your dog a snack. Next, hold the treat near your dog’s nose and begin moving your hand in the air, causing your dog to lift their neck and trace the path of your palm. Give the ‘sit’ order whenever the dog takes the normal sitting posture. Continue this task with a snack or a hug until your dog has mastered it.

When your dog has mastered the ‘sit‘ cue, teach them the ‘stay‘ instruction. Once your dog is in a comfortable sitting position, extend your palm facing them and give the stay order. Repeat the activity by slowly stepping away from your furry friend and afterwards saying the ‘stay’ word. Give your dog a reward or applause for a task well done. Continue until they have mastered the drill.

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6. Stand

This component makes it easier to place the dog in situations where standing is essential, like grooming or even being inspected by a vet.

Begin by issuing the ‘sit’ instruction. Then, with a goodie in your palm, roll it forwards and downwards toward your dog’s nose. Next, move your hands forwards while gripping the snack until your dog stands. Finally, give your dog the ‘stand’ order and incentivise it with compliments or a goodie.

7. Down

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This command can be used to quiet down an exuberant dog or to treat particular behavioural concerns in dogs.

This command is difficult to master since it demands your dog to adopt a submissive posture. Use this instruction by rewarding your dog with a treat. Wrap your fist around the treat and slowly move it nearer to your dog’s face and nostrils. Allow your dog to smell the material before slowly moving your palm to the ground. Keep moving your hand around the surface until your dog is lying down. When they are down, it is ideal for issuing the ‘down‘ instruction. Reward your dog or compliment them on their performance. Practice this activity until you are satisfied.

8. Wait

This instruction teaches your dog not to escape or stray.

Give the command ‘sit’ to your dog whenever it is outside your car or just in front of a locked door. Next, say the ‘wait’ order after opening your fist. Continue this exercise until your dog understands it completely.

9. Off

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To maintain your furnishings free of fuzz, “off” could be a handy instruction. “Off” is also an etiquette request as it helps keep your dogs off the furniture when you’re visiting your friend’s place as well.

Make a fist with a goodie and place it directly in front of the dog’s nose. They will attempt to take it from you; however, keep your palm clenched. When they finally pull back, tell them “off” and offer them the snack. To assist with identification, practice in a room with furnishings.

10. Heel

This arrangement is crucial for training the dog to behave appropriately while you are there.

Continue by utilising your dominant wrist to grab the dog’s leash. Encourage your dog to continue on the opposite side of you. Hold the treat in your non-dominant palm and walk your dog or urge them to rest. Carry out the ‘heel‘ command. Start by walking with your dog next to you. Give your furry friend a treat or applaud them on effectively complying with the instructions.

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Hand Signals For Training and Coaching Dogs

Another excellent technique to strengthen your connection with your canine is to educate them with hand movements. When an aural instruction is combined with a physical signal, many pets communicate better. Many furry friends start this at an early age. It is an excellent training approach that becomes useful as your dog ages.

Most dogs lose their hearing as they age, so learning hand motions ensures you’ll be able to interact with them. Moreover, your dog may not be capable of comprehending you if there are lots of vehicles, humans, or other loud stimuli surrounding you. In that instance, communicating cues with your dog could be even more critical because they could be in a setting with more risks and dangers.

Body language is more discernible to dogs than particular words. They find it easier to correlate a motion with an action than to discern a word from several other noises. Furthermore, the approach to learning something new consistently deepens your bond with your dog, which is usually a positive sign!

Your pet must learn to associate vocal instruction with sign language. The most effective technique to train your dog would be to keep your hand gesture simple and use treats and appreciation to reinforce behaviour.

When your dog behaves correctly to your orders, gradually reduce the price. If your dog has become familiar with standard commands such as sit, remain. So on, the transfer to gesture should be rather simple. Training usually works whenever you engage with your dog daily. If you make a concerted effort, your dog will rapidly learn sign language!

1. Watch Me

Watch Me
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This is a vital first step if you wish to eradicate auditory instructions in favour of only sign language. To discover, your pet must first ‘take a glance’ to see what instruction you like them to perform. Then, reward them with a treat anytime they take a gander at you intently. At first, when teaching, carry a small snack in your hand as your dog’s gaze will be focused on the win. 

2. Spin

Spin isn’t just a fun and entertaining gimmick; it can also keep your dog focused on you when numerous distractions are present. To message spin, extend your palm ahead of you and start making a rotary path with your finger.

3. Sit

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Among the most common orders for any dog, this is frequently the first preparation your dog accepts. The sign is simple: place your arms and hands up against your chest, palm facing the sky, and start moving your hand upward. At first, when starting, remember to couple the voice command “sit” also with the hand gesture.

4. Stay

One essential command line to teach your dog is to stay or wait. This nonverbal code is excellent for security in a public area or near a busy road. Train your dog by strolling away from them with your palm facing outward at the point of your ribcage and using both auditory instruction and hand cues. Help ensure your pet manages to stay until you call them.

5. Lie Down

Lie down
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Laying down is yet another excellent signal for calming your dog. This instruction aims to point your finger at your ribcage and perform a sweeping, angled movement. Keep a snack in your hand whilst still training, and your dog’s nose will pursue the movement.

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6. Come

Calling your dog to return is another constructive command. Begin with your arm open at your side and send it diagonally opposite your shoulder blade. This is essential when walking your dog off its leash in public places.

7. High-five

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Although a high five utilises the dog’s paw, a similar motion signal with contact can also be used. Squat down to your pet’s level and extend your palm towards them as if you’re going to ask them for a high five!

8. Up

Order your dog to raise its front paws and sit on its rear legs. With your palm pointing up, stretch your extended hand from your hips to your neck.

9. Rollover

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Another example is a rollover, in which the hand message resembles precisely what you wish your dog to be doing. For example, start moving your arm through an arc to indicate how you want your dog to start moving with an extended arm and palm pointed in front of you.

10. Drop

The drop seems to be another important behaviour to teach your dog to stay safe and concentrated during playtimes. Point your index finger and palm towards the ground to signal drop once your dog stands before you with the item you would like them to drop.


Teach these fundamental instructions to your dog to solve any behaviour problems and guarantee a healthy and content buddy. During the training phase, it’s often crucial to positively motivate your dog with vocal applause and goodies. Hand signals are another effective approach for improving interaction with your pup or dog! Using gestures allows you to communicate with your dog despite interruptions, disturbances, or you are far away.