Having a lap dog is only fun if you can actually train your dog to sit in your lap. Small dogs love being held and cuddled. However, they don't always know to jump in your lap, circle around to get comfortable, and lie down. Training your dog to sit in your lap can be a command you can teach your little guy to increase and improve the bond you two have together. Spending time with your small dog in your lap can improve your mood, calm your little guy down, and turn into an evening of cuddle fun. Training your little guy to greet you when you get home from a long day at work is one thing, but teaching him to cuddle and sit in your lap can turn your stressful day into a day filled with love and compassion. We own dogs for that unconditional love. Train your small dog to sit in your lap and give you just that.
Before you begin to train your small dog to sit in your lap, be sure you have a safe way for him to get up into your lap. For instance, if you're sitting on a couch and you want your little dog to come to the couch to sit in your lap, be sure you are offering him a safe way to get up onto your couch. Training your small dog to sit in your lap will be a matter of conditioning him to recognize how to get in your lap, when it is okay to be on your lap, and how to settle down while he's on your lap, so he's not constantly licking your face or running around across the couch instead of settling down. You can teach puppies and older small dogs to do this. Just be sure to keep them safe if they are on furniture.
To prepare for training, put yourself in the same seat each time you ask your little dog to come sit in your lap. This could be a kitchen chair, an office chair, a couch, or even on the floor so your small dog does not have to do any acrobatics to get up to your lap. Be consistent with his training and offer lots of treats to your small dog, so he knows he's doing a job you expect him to do and doing it well.
He keeps biting me
Hello, When he bites, does he break the skin? If he is breaking the skin, then you need to hire a professional trainer who is very experienced dealing with aggression and has the proper resources, like another trainer to assist him if needed, to help you. Biting can happen for a number of reasons. It can be play mouthing- which is far less serious, is done in play and excitement and does not break the skin. It can be resource guarding or possessiveness around food, toys, or certain people. It can be dog-related aggression. It can be dominance/rudeness -typically a dog who simply thinks that he is in charge and has learned that he can get what he wants by using his mouth. It can be fear-biting. It can be due to injury, illness, or chemical imbalance. It can also be for another reason. A good trainer can assess why he is biting by asking a series of questions and having a safe consult with Hunter to evaluate him and decide on an approach to train him. Expect your dog to have to be restrained safely or muzzled for the consult until Hunter gets used to the trainer. If Hunter is not breaking the skin, is only biting during play and times of excitement, and seems to be having fun when he does it - and does not look stiff, tense, or proud, then he is probably mouthing, which is far less serious. To address mouthing, check out the article that I have linked below and follow the "Leave It" method. You may also need to work on other training to improve Hunter's impulse control, obedience, and general calmness. A good obedience class, private lessons with a trainer, or following one of the methods from the second article that I have linked below can help with that part too. Mouthing biting: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Respect and listening: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Do not address the biting using the linked puppy biting article if it is not puppy mouthing but is dangerous biting - hard-aggression-related bites need to be taken much more seriously and addressed with a trainer present in a different way. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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Hello : )
I wonder if you can give some advice. Cooper is our 2nd dog, our previous dog died 3 years ago, he was lovely, a big labradoodle who was super gentle and affectionate and loved cuddling up with the whole family. However due to his huge size he was a bit too big for comfortable lap cuddles! When he died we all decided to get a small dog who would be small enough for lap cuddles. We researched and found Cavaliers one of the best recommended affectionate lap dogs. We now have Cooper, a 7 month Cavalier King Charles who is very sweet and friendly. However he doesn’t seem to like cuddles very much and won’t stay on your lap for more than a minute or two before jumping off and laying on the floor or going off into the hallway to lay down by himself. He seems very happy and content generally, we have two children 13 and 11 who grew up with a dog and are very calm and gentle, our house is generally very peaceful. He loves his walks every day, eats well and seems very happy. I realise all dogs have different character traits and think maybe he’s just not a cuddler or lapdog. I just though I would get your opinion if there’s anything we can do as we did so want a cuddly lapdog!
Many thanks and any advice gratefully received!
Hello Ben, There is a good chance that he is simply not an overly affectionate dog and that's just who he is. With that said, you can increase the odds of him learning to like touch a bit. Work on desensitizing him to being touched and held. Use his daily meal kibble. At as many meals as you can, practice gently touching him in an area while giving a treat. Touch an ear and give a treat. Touch a paw and give a treat. Touch a tail and give a treat. Touch his belly and give a treat. Practice this with every area of his body. When he enjoys you doing this with him each time and acts confident about it, start adding gentle restraint. Gently hold him in place for a second with your hands then give a treat. Practice until he is relaxed and enjoys that. When he is alright with that, then also practice gentle lifting him up, placing him immediately back down and giving a treat (be sure to support him well when you do this. Finally, when he is fine with all other touch and restraint and can stay relaxed and happy, practice gently embracing him and offering a treat - only do this if he has never shown any form of aggression and has done well with touch and seems relaxed up to this point. Gradually work on increasing the amount of touch over a couple of months - the goal is not just to restrain him and force him to stay but to make each touch pleasant using food so there is a good association with touch. Without the food it can create a bad association. He may never be a dog who asks for cuddles but desensitizing him to touch can teach him to enjoy it more and be more tolerant when it's offered to him. Right now he is young, he also may grow to enjoy cuddling more as he ages and is more willing to lie still for longer. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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