Your furniture is soft and comfortable. In fact, you probably purchased it because of its beauty and comfort. If you have ever come home to your dog napping on your couch, then know he appreciates your taste in furniture as well. However, you may not want your dog to be quite so comfortable on your beautiful, soft furnishings. Dog hair can be difficult to clean up off some fabrics and dirty paws can leave stains on your beautiful furniture. Moreover, sharp little claws can poke holes in fabrics such as leather. If you have furniture you do not want your dog on, you will need to train him to stay off it.
These training methods can be used for your fine furniture, your bed, and your everyday furniture. Maybe your household is run in such a way the pets should not be allowed on furniture at all. Or maybe you only have a few pieces you do not want your dog to ruin, but you may allow him on a family room couch while you are watching TV.
Teaching your dog to know the differences between the furniture he can get on, if any, and the furniture you do not want him on will be imperative to this training. If you are dedicated to keeping your furniture safe from your dog, this should only take a few weeks and lots of repetition and rewarding great behavior from your dog instead of becoming frustrated and angry when your dog forgets the rules.
To begin training your dog to stay off your furniture, you should start with an alternative for your dog. Invest in a thick and comfortable dog bed for your dog and place it in an area where he can still be part of social time and family entertainment. If your dog would prefer to sleep in your bedroom with you or even in one of the bedrooms belonging to your children, you can buy a bed for that space as well, so your dog knows he is welcome in the bedroom during sleeping time but not in your bed. You will also want some tasty treats to reward your dog for good behavior. Bring lots of love and patience to these training exercises because it can be quite frustrating if you have a dog destroying furniture with pet hair or claw marks.
Over zealous playing and biting with associated barking to insist you play with her. We have tried ignoring and occasional muzzling but once she is in that boisterous mood there is no stopping her biting us, our clothes etc
Hello Andy, Check out the article linked below. Starting today, use the "Bite Inhibition" method. BUT at the same time, begin teaching "Leave It" from the "Leave It" method. As soon as pup is good as the Leave It game, start telling pup to "Leave It" when she attempts to bite or is tempted to bite. Reward pup if she makes a good choice. If she disobeys your leave it command, use the Out command from the second article linked below to make her leave the area as a consequence. The order or all of this is very important - the Bite Inhibition method can be used for the next couple of weeks while pup is learning leave it, but leave it will teach pup to stop the biting entirely. The Out method teaches pup that you mean what you say without being overly harsh - but because you have taught pup to leave it first, pup clearly understands that you are not just playing (which is what pup probably thinks most of the time right now), so it is more effective. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the area, is also a good command for you. Check out the section on Using Out to Deal with Pushy Behavior for how to calmly enforce that command once it's taught. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ For jumping, the Step Toward method below: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-australian-shepherds-to-not-jump Another important part of this is puppy learning bite inhibition. Puppies have to learn while young how to control the pressure of their mouths - this is typically done through play with other puppies. See if there is a puppy class in your area that comes well recommended and has time for moderated off-leash puppy play. If you can't join a class, look for a free puppy play group, or recruit some friends with puppies to come over if you can and create your own group. You are looking for puppies under 6 months of age - since young puppies play differently than adult dogs. Right now, an outside class may be best in a fenced area, or letting friends' pups play in someone's fence outside. Moderate the puppies' play and whenever one pup seems overwhelmed or they are all getting too excited, interrupt their play, let everyone calm down, then let the most timid pup go first to see if they still want to play - if they do, then you can let the other puppies go too when they are waiting for permission. Finding a good puppy class - no class will be ideal but here's what to shoot for: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/puppy-classes-when-to-start/ When pup gets especially wound up, she probably needs a nap too. At this age puppies will sometimes get really hyper when they are overtired or haven't had any mental stimulation through something like training. When you spot that and think pup could be tired, place pup in their crate or an exercise pen with a food stuffed Kong for a bit to help her calm down and rest. Practicing regular obedience commands or having pup earn what they get by performing commands like Sit and Down before feeding, petting, tossing a toy, opening the door for a walk, ect... can also help stimulate pup mentally to increase calmness and wear them out. Commands that practice focus, self-control, and learning something a bit new or harder than before can all tire out puppies. Finally, check out the PDF e-book downloads found on this website, written by one of the founders of the association of professional dog trainers, and a pioneer in starting puppy kindergarten classes in the USA. Click on the pictures of the puppies to download the PDF books: https://www.lifedogtraining.com/freedownloads/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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Just want to THANK Caitlin Crittenden for 'spot on' reply to our situation with 'zoomies'! Our girl is definitely the 'circus dog' type...I just have to figure out how to maximize her talent into structured FUN! Dancing and hula hoop jumping definitely on her horizon!
Hello Alice, Thank you so much for you kind reply! It is always so nice to hear that my advice was helpful! I am excited for you guys and your fun with training ahead. Also, check out Kikopup and Zach George on YouTube for some fun how-to-videos to teach tricks and get ideas. Thanks! Caitlin Crittenden
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This dog loves to walk...up to 5 miles at a time. Despite walk, returns to house and races at mach speed through house. Over chairs, tables, couches, like a canine tornado... responds to ‘off’ command long enough to hit floor and receive a treat before tearing off through the house again.
She is a rescue, 16 lbs, was found wandering so no history available. She is mostly adapting very well to our household except this uncontrollable charging at such a speed it is hard to take any evasive action! She is certainly a candidate for a circus dog!
Hello Alice, What you described is called the "Zoomies!". Puppies commonly do it and some adults will continue doing it also. It's great that you walk him so much but I suspect he would also benefit a lot from mental exercise. Physical exercise is very good for a dog but some dogs with wonderful endurance will actually return even more excited from it. It you can make the walk more mentally challenging dogs tend to feel more relaxed and tired. I suggest teaching pup a structured heel for walks. Train pup to walk slightly behind you and focus on you during the walk. Practice things like "Doggie pushups" - which is Sit, Down, and Stand all together - changing the order of the commands and repeating a few times so that pup really has to listen and work. You can also walk pup on a long curled up leash, so that the leash is 6 feet in busy area, but you can let out another 15 or so feet in more deserted areas and practice Down-Stay, Sit-Stay, and Come on the leash periodically. Incorporating a lot of obedience into the walk, making it hard enough to be a bit challenging mentally and require a lot of self-control and focus from pup can really help wear him out, teach better obedience, build respect and trust in your relationship, and make pup feel more satisfied. I also suggest shortening some of the walks and using that time to have training sessions with pup, where you teach pup new commands, harder versions of current commands, or fun tricks - to keep his brain busy. Good mental stimulation has been proven to be twice as tiring than physical exercise alone for a dog. My previous dog (now past away after 12 years) was a Border Collie, bred to run all day in the field. While he was young, no amount of physical exercise I could give would completely wear him out (he just got in better shape and could walk further!). In addition to normal length walks I spent 30 minutes every day teaching him new tricks or harder versions of current commands, such as going from basic obedience to off-leash obedience commands, tricks like: how to pick up toys, how to dance on his hind legs, take a sock off my foot, bring me a tissue when I sneezed, play dead, roll over, close doors, ect...He eventually learned over 90 different commands. I didn't have a goal of teaching him that many words but it was just a nice side effect of stimulating him mentally through training for 30 minutes each day - overtime the commands added up as he got better and better at training. The training kept him out of trouble by helping him feel calmer while he was young and energetic, and he loved it! Perhaps your pup would be great at something similar. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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