German Shepherd Commands List

photo by kaisergsd

GSDs have to learn commands to ensure that they live harmoniously together with their owners.

Here are some basic to advanced German Shepherd commands in English and German plus GSD tricks and command training tips.

German Shepherd Basic Obedience Commands

German Shepherds can learn basic training commands within a week because they are highly intelligent. Here are some of the basic commands you can teach your GSD.

  • Come- signals your GSD to come towards you
  • Crate, Kennel, or Bed- signals your GSD to enter his crate, kennel or bed
  • Get it or Go get- makes your GSD get an object that is laying on the ground
  • Go in or Inside-makes your GSD enter the room or house
  • Go out or Outside- makes your GSD leave the room or house
  • Heel- reminds your GSD to remain at your side
  • Lay down or Down- makes your GSD go into the down position
  • Leave it- teaches your GSDs to leave or ignore an object
  • Let go or Drop it- teaches your GSD to release or drop onto the ground any item in his mouth
  • No or Stop- interrupts your GSD from doing something
  • Okay- indicates that the situation is safe or in order
  • Sit- signals your GSD to sit
  • Stand- signals your GSD to stand up
  • Stay- signals your GSD to remain where he is
  • Take- signals your GSD to take things gently from your hands.

German Shepherd Advanced Obedience Commands

The following advanced German Dog commands are demanding so your GSD may need a month or longer to master these.

  • Back up- signals your GSD will walk backward
  • Bark or Speak- signals your GSD to bark on command
  • Bite- signals your GSD to bite into an object
  • Fetch- makes your GSD catch the desired object in the mouth and retrieve it to you
  • Find or Track – makes your GSD search the desired item or person
  • Jump- teaches your GSD to jump over or through an object
  • Quiet- interrupts your GSD from barking or whining
  • Turn Left- teaches your GSD to turn to his left
  • Turn Right- teaches your GSD to turn to his right
  • Walk faster- teaches your GSD to walk faster
  • Walk slower- teaches your GSD to walk slower
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German Commands for German Shepherds

If you hear people say ‘Deutscher Schäferhund’, it means they’re referring to the German Shepherd using the German language.

Using a different language can make it easier for your German Shepherd to know you are specifically addressing him- not other animals or other people.

Here are common German commands with corresponding pronunciation.

  • Bring, Fetch, or Get it- Bring (Brring) 
  • Come or Here- Hier (hee-er)  
  • Down- Platz (Plots)    
  • Go Inside- Geh rein (gay-rine)           
  • Go Outside- Geh Raus or Geh Draussen (gay- rows)
  • Heel- Fuss (foos)        
  • Kennel, Crate, or Box- Zwinger/Box  
  • No- Nein (Nine)          
  • Quiet- Ruhig (Rue-ig)
  • Shame! Stop that (incorrect behavior)- Pfui (Foo-ey)                      
  • Sit- Sitz (zetz)
  • Stand- Steh (shtay)     
  • Stay- Bleib (bly’b)       

German Shepherd Attack Commands

Schutzhund training commands are given using the German language. If you want your GSD to join the Schutzhund training or German training system, start familiarizing him with German commands like these. 

  • Attack or Take hold- Fass (Fahs)        
  • Bark or Speak- Gib Laut (Gib Lawt)   
  • Bite- Packen (Fass)     
  • Go forward or Run out- Voraus (For-ows)     
  • Out, Drop it, or Let Go- Aus (Ows)
  • Search- Such (Zook) 
  • Up or Jump- Hopp (Hup) 

Fun Commands

These are tricks that are not necessary but can be fun for you and your GSD. 

  • Cover your eyes- when you ask your GSD if he’s shy, he will answer by covering his eyes
  • Hands up- makes your GSD hold both of his front paws up simultaneously
  • Kiss- signals your GSD to touch your cheek with his nose
  • Open Door or Close Door- when your GSD tugs on the rope attached to the door, the door opens or closes
  • Play dead- signals your GSD to lie down on the ground pretending to be dead
  • Pray- makes your GSD prop his front legs then drop his head pretending to pray
  • Roll over- makes your GSD roll over onto his back then return to his stomach
  • Salute- signal your GSD to raise his paw and touch his forehead
  • Shake hands- teaches your GSD to take hold of your hand using his paw
  • Show belly- teaches your GSD to show his belly so you can rub it
  • Wave- makes your GSD lift his paw and wave
  • Yawn- when you ask your GSD if he’s tired, he will answer by yawning 
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Command Training Tips

Training should be fun for you and your GSD so make sure you know what to do and what to avoid.


  • Be consistent and use the same command so that your GSD will recall your commands easily.
  • To motivate your GSD, readily provide treats, physical reward, or verbally praise your GSD immediately after he obeys your command. 
  • As much as possible use both verbal commands and hand signals because GSDs tend to be more receptive to body language than verbal language.
  • When your GSD ignores your commands, prove to him that you’re an able leader by gaining his trust instead of getting panicky.
  • Use a normal tone of voice when you give a command because a GSD is sensitive to loud noises.


  • Even though GSDs are full of energy, don’t train them all day long; provide breaks and enough time to rest.
  • Don’t yell aggressively or physically punish your GSD for little mistakes because it will cause him to mistrust or fear you.
  • Don’t use long phrases or sentences in commanding your GSD; one-word command is best.
  • If your GSD doesn’t follow your command right away, avoid repeating the same commands over and over again because your GSD might just ignore you.

Whether you want English or German commands and basic or advance commands, these commands will promote safety and fun.

Just remember to start from the basics; then gradually move forward with the advanced command words.

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