It’s chilly at night and you want to be able to cuddle up to your canine friend for extra warmth. He happens to be rather on the large side though, and as strong as you might be, you’re not an Olympian power lifter. That means somehow he needs to navigate up and down the stairs himself. He has attempted to a couple of times, but stumbles and quickly thinks better of the idea. It also makes giving him the odd bath somewhat challenging. If you could place him in the upstairs bath he’d stay. Instead, you try and hose him down outside, but holding onto him there is a challenge in itself.
Training him to use the stairs would alleviate these problems and give you a dog to cuddle every evening. It will also give him greater space to roam and call his own when you’re out the house.
The good news is - training your dog to maneuver the stairs isn’t as difficult as you might think. He simply needs walking very slowly up and down them to help him develop a technique. Throw in some treats and support from his owner and he’ll soon be bounding up and down them at a worrying speed. If he’s a puppy, he should be confident and energetic and could be climbing stairs in just a few days. If he’s older and always avoided steps then he may need up to 10 days before he gets the hang of it.
Get this training right and you’ll be able to call him up to join you where ever you are. You’ll also find it will come in handy when you’re out in public and there are steps to navigate.
The most important component of training will be a good set of stairs to practice on. Your stairs at home should do the trick just fine. Just find 10 minutes each day to train where there won’t be kids rushing up and down getting ready for school, or a partner bolting down them because they’re late for work.
You’ll also need a stockpile of your dog's favorite food or treats to motivate and reward him. Apart from that you just need patience and a can-do frame of mind.
Once you’ve collated all of that, it’s time to get to work!