I sometimes think it would be easier to tell you what they DON’T understand .
My dogs all know the basic obedience commands of heel , sit , down , come , stay , take it , over , etc . Other commands are watch me , wait , back , shame , no , OK , here , find it , take it nicely…
Some of them have special words or phrases none of the others understand . Kharma knows ‘gimme a hug’ , and she does … puts her frong legs around my neck and squeezes . Jay knows ‘lay your head’ , when I’m holding him , he will lay his head on my shoulder very dramatically . His command to roll over is ‘roll with it baby !’ . ‘Gimme a kiss’ (or kissies) is understood my all of them .
Then there are the conversational words that they recognize : bye bye (a BIG favorite in my house ) , potty , get your toy , couch , bed , walk , water , snackie , cookie , ice , dinner (or dins) ,leave your brother(or sister) alone , and many more I am forgetting .
Then we get into the really weird stuff . all of my dogs , past and present , have had favorite foods , and they have learned to associate their food with it’s name (or nicname .) My male Gordon Setter Corey (1989 - 2003) LOVED spaghetti , which I called ‘sketties’ when talking to him . All had to do was mention sketties , and it would send him into a whirling , spinning frenzy . Jay , my male Papillon , has 2 favorites - pizza (peet-zee to Jay) and chicken (chickee) . Either word starts him licking his lips and whining . Holly , my first Gordon (1982 - 1992) loved peanut butter . You could casually ask her if she wanted a peanut butter sandwich , and she would stop what she was doing and go sit in front of the cabinet where it was kept , and wait very patiently for you to fix it for her . They ALL know what steakie and hot doggies are .
I taught my Gordon Setter Abbie (1986 - 1998) to turn off the light at the wall switch , and her mother Holly to put trash in the trash can . Fancy (1994 - 2005) would bring my my car keys on command and pick up nearly anything I dropped .
I think dogs are pretty amazing . The more you work with them , the more intelligent they become .