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Teach your dog its name

Teach your dog its name so he knows to pay attention when you call. Most people assume their dogs will know their name, and many dogs eventually do associate the sound of their name with the owner calling.

But, if you spend just a little time, you can train your dog to respond to his name. It is very easy, fun and important. You spent so much time finding the right name for your pooch, and now he thinks his name is "Look what I have"!

You will use your pet's name to:

  • Call his attention away from unwanted situations.
  • Get his attention to ask another command.
  • Call a particular hound in a multi-dog household.

Still haven't found the perfect dog name? Check our amazing dog name generator, you can get a random name out of thousands or even get a completely unique name created after your name or a word you like.

Teaching your dog its name tips!

  • If you adopted a new pet I recommend you change his/her name immediately. You don't know how the name has been used before by past owners so it is better to train a new name and give it a positive association. This will make your furry friend feel confident and secure when you say his name.
  • Never scold your pooch or say NO! after you say his name! It is important that he has a good feeling about the sound of his name. This will make him comfortable to give you his attention when you request it.
  • Always say your pet's name once! We tend to repeat names and commands over and over again. This only makes the sound irrelevant to the animal. Say it once and make it count by rewarding his attention.

Steps to teach your dog its name

Step 1: Get his attention and reward it!

Teach your dog its nameAs soon as your dog looks at you - Mark and reward!

Find a quiet room in your house and call your dog's name with an upbeat and happy tone of voice. As soon as he looks at you...Mark and Reward!

If your furry friend doesn't look at you, try to make noises with your mouth or slap your hands on your thighs to get his attention (Do NOT repeat his name over and over!). Do this only the first few times.

Repeat this step many times throughout the day. I recommend doing 10 quick repetitions twice a day for 5 days. This will make your canine friend feel super happy after hearing his name!

Step 2: Teach your dog its name in different places

Repeat Step 1 in many different places:

  • Different rooms of your house
  • Backyard and front-yard
  • While out on walks
  • At the vet clinic
  • At the pet store
  • At the Dog park

Step 3: Teach your dog its name with added distractions

Again, repeat Step 1 but now try it while your pooch is distracted with something else!

The key here is to always give him a reward that is better than what he was previously doing!

Teach your puppy that every time you call his name it pays to look at you! You want him to have absolutely no doubts. If you call, the best option he has is to look at you!

Start with low distractions, like inside your home while someone else is bouncing a ball. Then move on to harder distractions. But move up slowly, you want your pet to succeed several times on each step!

Step 4: Teach your dog its name at a distance

Repeat Step 1 while you are far away from your pet! But you need to start close by!

Start by calling your dog's name while you are only a few steps away. As soon as he looks at you Mark and Reward! Then do the same a little further away.

Your furry friend doesn't necessarily have to come to you when you call his/her name. Just looking at you should be good enough because later on you might want to give him another command. But if he comes to you reward it too!


Your dog knows his name when you say it and he looks at you 8 out 10 times you ask! This should happen in many different places, at a distance and even with distractions.

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