Whether you're training on your own or in a basic obedience class, your dog should learn five basic commands: Sit Stay Heel Come Down As you train, don't scold your dog or say its name in an angry tone. Just repeat the command and give the dog enough guidance to understand what the command means. When the dog performs as you wish, say its name in an affectionate tone and offer praise and a treat. Dogs, especially puppies, may learn something perfectly one afternoon and forget it completely the next. Be patient and consistent with your training. Avoid spending too long on a training session -- a few minutes every day is more effective than burning out your dog in a single session. Many dogs love to learn and work, especially if they can earn approval from their people by doing so. Basic training can enhance acceptable dog social behavior and bond the two of you more securely. A good obedience class will also teach you and your dog hand signals to go with the basic commands. Start by giving both the voice command and the hand signal. Once your dog has mastered the command, start giving only one or the other signal until your dog is trained to respond to either. Hand signals may be very helpful if your dog should lose its hearing later in life.