How to get dog to respond to name

Name your dog in a cheerful, bright, and easy-to-call tone. When they see you when you call, please give your puppy a treat.

When you first adopt a dog, they may not be able to respond to their name because they are scared or distracted. If your dog’s name is too long, complicated, or unclear, they may never recognize and respond to it.

In fact, teaching your dog its name will be the first “command” they learn. The only thing you need is a bag full of delicious treats and a room free of distractions: Wait until your dog is fully noticed. Say your name in a cheerful voice and wait for Max to look at you.

When you call, the dog does not respond to its name, nor should you be angry or violent towards it. The act of violence that hurts your dog, panic makes the process of remembering names more difficult.

With consistent and persistent training over a two-week period, your dog can start responding to its own name in as little as two days.

Here are two ways to train your dog to answer a name:

1) Way 1: 

You stand 2 to 6 feet away from your dog. Say the dog’s name, and as soon as the dog looks at you, mark the behavior with a marker like “yes”, enjoy with food or play while giving lots of praise. Practice at least 10 times per day.

how to get dog to respond to name

2) Way 2: 

Play a fun and easy game to help your dog associate their name as a positive sound. Grab some soft, small snacks so your dog can chew and swallow quickly and easily. 

Wait until your dog is not looking at you and then say your dog’s name in a very bright and cheerful tone. As soon as the dog turns to look at you, mark this with a word to let the dog know it’s good, such as “yes” or “good”, then enjoy it right away to your dog.

Play a fun and easy game to help your dog associate their name
Play a fun and easy game to help your dog associate their name

Some note:

  • If you say your dog’s new name and they don’t look at you immediately, do not repeat their name over and over. Instead, use some exciting noises—kissy sounds, robot beeps, whistles, baby talk—to get their attention.
  • Try not to give your dog a nickname or use multiple names.

Published by

Henry Mark

Mark is Editor at covering Information about breeds, naming dogs. He's a graduate in veterinary medicine at the agricultural academy.