The old adage "You can't teach an old dog new tricks," might discourage you from trying to teach your older dog to stay off the carpet, but it is possible to teach him something new. The difficulty will be to change his habits. Older dogs already have an idea of how the world works and it's harder to make a change to their routine than young dogs who don't have long-established patterns.
If you're moving into a new home or if you are bringing home a new dog, set the boundaries from the beginning. From the moment he steps into your home, let him know where he can and cannot be. You might need to block off rooms with baby gates for a while. Make sure he knows where he can go. Give him a space to call his own and feel comfortable in.
There are several methods to use based on your dog's temperament and the way he reacts to his new rules. Read through the three below and decide which will be best for your dog, or mix and match steps to come up with the best training plan for your dog.
whenever Lola, my boyfriend's dog, visits, she comes onto my jute fiber rug and then starts scratching herself. She likes staying on that rug even though we put her own blanket on the floor next to the rug. My apartment has concrete floors and she never likes to sit on the floor.
Another question is that she has separation anxiety whenever I visit. She cries when we leave my boyfriend's place and she jumps on us and we are trying the ignore method when we come to his place and turn our back when she jumps. i praise her only when she calms. Will that eventually work? Is she too old to be trained?
Hello Patricia, Check out the article linked below and working on teaching the Out command for the rug. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ For the jumping, check out the Step Towards method - stepping toward tends to work better than stepping away with older dogs because the action of moving toward pup communicates that you want them to respect the space around you though body language, and makes jumping less effective and fun for the dog by throwing them a bit off balance. Once pup is acting respectful, you then follow the step toward with a reward for sitting politely so pup will learn to Sit nicely to get attention instead. Step Toward method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-australian-shepherds-to-not-jump For the separation anxiety, I would start by building pup's independence through crate training, Place, and Down-Stay. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and work on that method to get her used to you being out of the room while she is crated. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Work on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open as well as closed. Give her something to do in the crate or on Place during the day while you are out of the room (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on). Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Down-Stay: For some dogs, working on more structure and independence at home is all that's needed for. Some dogs also need to be taught to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. Building her independence and structure in her life will still be an important part of this protocol too. Set up a camera to spy on her. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear her but she will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Set up your camera to spy on her while she is in the crate and leave. Spy on her from outside or another room. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear her crying or see her start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, quietly return, spray a small puff of air from the pet convincer at her side through the crate wires, without opening the door, then leave again. Every time she barks or tries to get out of the crate, correct, then leave again. Don't spray in the face and avoid citronella ones - only use unscented air - citronella is too harsh. After five minutes to ten minutes of practice, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back into the room where she is and sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting when she barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when she stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes a session at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, while she is quiet, go back into the room and sprinkle more treats. This time stay in the room. Do not speak to her or pay attention to her for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When she is being calm, then you can let her out of the crate. When you let her out, practice opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want her to be calm when she comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore her when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. Also, for longer alone times give her a food stuffed Kong into the crate/room with her. Once she is less anxious she will likely enjoy it even if she didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help her to enjoy alone time more. First, she may need her anxious state of mind interrupted so that she is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give her a food stuffed Kong in the crate for her to relieve her boredom instead of barking, since she will need something other than barking to do at that point. Regularly practice her staying on Place and in the open crate while you are home and leave the room as well. Finally, teach pup the Quiet command to make communication with her clearer. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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