Teaching Dogs to Be Calm: Explained Step-by-step and 3 Tips

Sometimes it’s not that easy to train a dog to be calm.

When it comes to puppies, one often wonders if this even works?

Yes! You can calm a puppy and teach an adult dog to relax.

If you are wondering:

How to get a relaxed dog

Are we the perfect contact for you?

We have created a step-by-step guide that will take you and your dog by the hand and paw.

In a nutshell: bring the dog to rest – this is how it works

Dogs do not understand the principle of doing nothing and rest. The only thing we can teach them is to wait.

But that requires a lot of self-control and actually has little to do with actual relaxation.

You can have your dog perform “Stay.”
Then you give the command “silence”.
If he stays calm and moves only a little or not at all, you reward him.
Make your dog wait every once in a while and reward him if he stays calm.

Teach your dog to be calm – you still have to keep that in mind

As mentioned, your dog will not actually learn to “relax.”

Relaxation only sets in when your dog actually wants it.

Not enough reward

Self-control is difficult for dogs to implement.

Any attempt, no matter how small, to hold back energy and remain calm needs to be properly rewarded by you.

Your dog can’t find peace?

If your dog does not find peace, there can be many reasons. I have listed 3 of them for you:

  • Your dog doesn’t feel safe.
  • Your dog is not busy.
  • Your dog is encouraged by you.
  • You can do this if any of the points above apply:

1. Give the dog security

In the first case, you need to practice in a much quieter environment. Start exercising at home. It will then be much easier for your dog to relax. Just teaching a puppy to be calm is almost impossible without a familiar environment.

2. Provide exercise for your dog

Does your dog constantly need action? Not everyone is lucky enough to adopt a naturally laid-back couch-tender.

Maybe your dog isn’t busy enough…

My first dog was a bundle of energy – she only relaxed after a few hours of full-on running.

Make sure your dog has the opportunity to release any pent-up energy and frustration.

The mental workload that your dog needs as well as physical activity should not be underestimated. Keep your dog busy with brain teasers, such as search games, nose work, or intelligence toys.

3. Play properly with the dog

If your dog is constantly being prodded by you or other people, he may not be able to calm down properly.

It is therefore important to introduce play times in which you take the time to really have fun with your four-legged friend. Be careful not to goad the dog by getting too frantic and quitting the game as soon as your dog gets too wild.

It is best to introduce the game phases with a word signal and of course you should be in a playful mood yourself.

It often works well not to play with the dog in the house.

In this way, your dog experiences the apartment as a quiet place where it can relax. Instead, play with him in the garden or on a walk.

How long will it take…

… until your dog can wait quietly.

Since every dog learns at a different rate, the question of how long it takes can only be answered vaguely.

If in doubt, expect to need a good 15 training sessions of 10-15 minutes each.

Step-by-step instructions: Teach the dog to be calm

Before we start, you should know what tools you can use for the step-by-step instructions.

Utensils needed

You definitely need treats.

Anything that makes friends with your dog and is considered a reward may be used.

The instruction

  • You let your dog do “stay”.
  • Then give him the command “Silence”.
  • Once your dog waits quietly for a few seconds, reward him.
  • It’s okay if your dog shows some exercise. Among other things, adopt a different sitting position. Reward him anyway, as long as he doesn’t move.


Make clear the difference between stay and rest. When resting, your dog may also show a little movement. At Don’t stay.


While you can train your dog to be calm, we encourage you to make life comfortable enough for them to relax on their own.

Make sure you live in a quiet apartment, exercise a lot, and keep a cool head yourself.

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