The Essentials of German Shepherd Puppy Training

For the training and education of a German Shepherd Dog, it needs hardness and consistency as well as love and understanding. Always keep calm and don’t let go even if you lose your motivation from time to time.

Soon the dog will learn that not he but the owner has the final say. You should begin with the dog education already in the puppy age and/or if the dog finds its way into your apartment, then your new friend will grow up fast to a good-natured and faithful companion.

Of course, pure education is not everything. The Shepherd Dog puppy also needs a lot of exercise and a few tasks that require his mental strength.

Get him to Know Your Name

One of the first commands every dog should listen to is his own name. So that the Shepherd Puppy learns what it is called and who is meant, the name must be practiced again and again.

The easiest way to do this is to call your dog’s name at the moment he walks towards you and praise him when he is with you.

This creates a positive association between the praise and the name of the Shepherd Dog. The Shepherd learns that pretty fast.

Be careful not to use the name command in combination with things you do not want. Otherwise, the furry companion might associate punishment with his name.

Important: Setting Limits in Education

It is extremely difficult when you have to retrain your dog’s unpleasant behavior one day. For this reason, it is advisable to teach the puppy where its limits lie from the beginning.

No matter how intense your German Shepherd puppy begs, don’t give in to him. Stay calm and resolute!

Use clear commands like “No” or look at him and point your hand to his place.

If the puppy doesn’t react, don’t let him dominate you. In this case, take him to his seat and let him sit down. Then praise the dog and go back to your own place.

It is certain that the little fella will try his luck again. Here, too, consistency is imperative. Even if you get tired of it quickly, repeat the procedure until the dog has understood that there is nothing to be gained.

This educational technique can be applied to many different situations. For example, if the dog is not allowed to have a certain object in the apartment, if he is begging at the table, or if he is not allowed to jump on the bed.

How do you get a Shepherd Dog House-Trained?

We can’t stress enough that you have to be patient. The quickest way to get your furry friend house-trained is to take a week off right after buying a puppy and concentrate fully on the dog.

What many don’t know is that the young GSD puppy can’t control his bladder properly in the beginning. This is also a skill that has to be trained first.

Step 1: Observe the little dog very closely and pay attention to signals! If the puppy gets restless, he needs to go at once. There’s no time to finish eating. Often the dog turns when he has to look to the door or begins to screech.

Step 2: Afterwards, you must extensively praise him. By linking the outdoor activity with something positive, he will also understand how important it is to get in touch when he is in a hurry.

Once you have missed the opportunity to go outside with the animal in time, you must not punish it afterward!

The puppy can’t associate his mistake with the later scolding!

Small Shepherd puppies usually feel an urge to urinate or stool after playing, sleeping, drinking and eating. So you can take the puppy outside afterward.

The Most Important Commands in Education

The next two basic commands that any German Shepherd puppy should master are ” sit ” and ” down”. Try to create a distraction-free environment to practice, so it is easier for the dog to concentrate.


  1. Take a treat in your hand, stretch out your index finger and raise your arm. Since the gaze of the puppy will follow the path of the treat, it must inevitably look upwards.
  2. He will automatically sit down because it is easier for him to look up while sitting. Right the moment he sits down, yell “sit!”
  3. Praise the dog and give him his deserved treat.

If the puppy tries to jump up, stop the exercise, take a step back and start again.

Now your puppy understands the “sit” command, you can continue with “down”.


  1. Let the Shepherd puppies first execute the “sit” command. Then take another small snack in your hand and place it flat on the floor in front of the dog.
  2. The rest happens automatically again. The dog will lie down on the ground all by himself to get to the snack.
  3. The moment the young GSD lies down, you call “down”, praise him and give him his deserved treat.

The hand movements are only a help for the dog to understand more quickly what he should do. They will become superfluous over time.

The German Shepherd puppy can also be trained on hand signals. When training, simply make sure that the dog has eye contact with your hand and gradually omit the verbal command.


Most puppies are by nature rather impatient, similar to children. Therefore this command requires a certain amount of endurance again.

For this command, it is assumed that the dog has already mastered the “sit” command.

  1. The Shepherd Dog puppy first receives the order to sit down.
  2. Then call “stay” and slowly move a few steps away.
  3. If the puppy hasn’t moved from the spot, then go to him, praise him and give him a treat.

If he follows you, then you must lead the dog back to his place and start the exercise from the beginning.

He starts barking, then you wait until he calms down and then you go back to him.

If you practice this procedure, you can increase the distance between you and the dog from time to time.


If the German Shepherd puppy has learned to stay seated, then it would be nice if he would come back to you on call.

  1. First, give your dog the command “stay” and move away from your puppy.
  2. Call out “Come” loudly, have a treat ready, stretch your arm and index finger and point to the floor in front of you.
  3. When the dog comes running, praise him immediately.

If the little friend is distracted by other things, the exercise is repeated.


So that your little companion doesn’t spoil his stomach, it is advisable that he doesn’t necessarily eat everything he finds on the way while walking. Often he is very reluctant to give back his prey.

With the command “Off”, the puppy will release his prey again.

  1. This command is best trained while playing with the dog. Throw a ball and take a treat in your hand while the Shepherd retrieves the ball.
  2. When he comes running back, let him sniff the treat.
  3. Since food is more interesting for the dog than the ball, he will drop it. This is the moment when you shout ” Off ” and reward him with the treat when he has dropped the ball.

Get the Shepherd Puppies Used to Collar and Leash

There is a very simple trick with which the puppy learns to love his collar and leash. You just tie his collar on before he gets his food.

He connects the collar with the breakfast and the dinner, soon he will look forward to his collar. Once you have done this, simply repeat the same procedure with the leash.

The First Time Out with the Leash

When the German Shepherd Dog puppy has got used to his new jewelry, it’s time for the first leashed trip outside.

If the puppy doesn’t move from the spot

  • Talk to him and calm him down with gentle words.
  • If that doesn’t help then take a treat or your favorite toy with you.

Don’t carry the dog! He must not be rewarded for not wanting to walk.

If the puppy pulls on the leash and you stop. Don’t praise him until he gives in and the line slackens.

You have to be stubborn and stop every time the little dog pulls on the leash, otherwise, he will not give up this behavior because he is used to it.

Leave the Shepherd Dog Alone

Try to leave the German Shepherd puppies alone as early as possible. It doesn’t have to be for long at first. Simple everyday ways to the post office, to the letterbox, to the car etc. are excellently suited.

Wait until the dog lies quietly in his place, go out to the front door and come back a short time later.

When you come back, there will be a treat for the dog and he will be praised. The more you practice the longer you can try to leave the dog alone.

If the puppy starts howling, do not go back to him immediately. Otherwise, the dog thinks you’ve come back for his howling and next time it’ll just get louder. Wait till he calms down before you go back to the house.

If you have to leave the German Shepherd puppy alone for a longer period of time, then go for a long walk with him first, play with him for a while and give him the opportunity to meet his needs.

It is easier for the Shepherd Dog to wait for you at home alone when he is tired and relieved.

Shepherd Dog Education in the Dog School

You can’t handle the dog education alone or think that you are not consistent enough? Then we recommend you to visit a dog school. Not only you but also your dog will benefit from this.

Many dog owners are afraid of the costs that can arise for professional dog training. On the other hand, keep in mind that you will spend the next 10 years with your new furry friend. In order to make this time as beautiful and memorable as possible, you should know what it takes so that your GSD understands you and you also know what is going on in him.

In order to prevent the visit to the dog school from becoming a burden, I advise you to choose a dog school in your area.

In professional hands, you learn the correct handling of your dog and can train new tricks and commands as well as the correct behaviors together with a trainer who refers to many years of experience.

As a nice side effect, your Shepherd puppy gets to know many other dogs in the dog school, so he gets excellent socialization in dealing with fellow dogs.

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