Welcome to our new, weekly 'Ask a Trainer from the SF SPCA' feature on 7x7.com. They'll help you get your dog or cat into shape and ready for the world. Ask your own questions in the comments!

Q: I have been trying to train my new rescue puppy, but I'm completely lost and overwhelmed. What is a simple way to start?

A: Start with a simple training exercise, like teaching your dog to sit. Here's how:

Step 1: Practice using the verbal commands.
Step 2: Say the command, lure the dog into position, and reward him or her.
Step 3: Lure the dog into several sits/downs before giving the treat.
Step 4: Show the dog your empty hand (to show no food lure). Say the command, use your hand signal if needed (hand should look the same as when you do have a treat) and reward when the dog does the sit or down without being shown the treat.
Step 5: Reward sits and downs with little rewards every day.

Get more training tips and access to training classes at the SF SPCA here.