Want to Keep Your Dog Away From Your Furniture? Read This

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Dogs love a comfy place to lie down, just like humans do, and it’s a rare pup that wouldn’t prefer a bed or sofa to the hard floor. Some dog owners choose not to fight that battle, and they let their pets share their furniture. But others would rather protect their furniture from dog hair and odor. If you fall in the latter category, read on for some tips on keeping your dog off the sofa.

Provide An Alternative

If you’re looking for professional help with dog training, check out the best dog training near me. If you’re going it alone, then the first step in training dogs to stay off the sofa is to provide them with furniture of their own. For most dog owners, that means purchasing a dog bed. Beds for dogs come in several shapes and sizes, so make sure to choose the one that’s right for your pet. For example, dogs who tend to curl up fit well into a round bed with raised edges. Dogs that like to burrow under the covers may prefer a cave-style bed. A dog bed isn’t the only option, however. Some people give their pets child-size furniture, like a miniature sofa or easy chair.

Use Positive Reinforcement

Once your pet has a comfortable bed of his own, the next step is to train him to go to it. Dogs respond well to positive reinforcement in the form of treats and praise. You can teach your dog a simple phrase, like “Go to your bed,” and reward him when he does it. Practice the training many times until your dog has a strong positive association with going to his bed. Also, look into clicker training as a way to reinforce specific behaviors. A clicker is a tool that lets you tell your dog the exact moment when he’s doing the right thing. By teaching your dog to go to his bed, you have a way to redirect his behavior when he jumps on the sofa.

Be Consistent

It’s very important for everyone in the family to be consistent with the dog’s training. Otherwise, your dog will only learn to get off the sofa or go to his bed when you say it. He won’t learn that the sofa is not his place. If you don’t have a dog already but are thinking about adopting one, it’s a good idea to have a conversation with your family in advance about the boundaries you want to set. Make sure everyone is on the same page so that you can start your dog’s training from day one.

Block Access When You’re Away

Most dogs are highly motivated to please their owner, but when their owner isn’t around, they are susceptible to temptation. If you want to protect your furniture while you’re away from home, you may need to block your pet’s access to it. This could mean crating your dog or putting up gates to keep your dog out of certain rooms. Bear in mind, though, that gates only work well if your dog can’t jump over them. You can also block the furniture itself by putting chairs or other objects on the sofa.

Training a dog can be frustrating because they don’t always learn what you want right away. And some dogs, just like some people, have more trouble controlling their impulses than others. It’s important to be patient and to stick to positive reinforcement of good behavior. Yelling, scolding, and punishing may teach your dog to be afraid of the furniture or of you, while gentle words and consistent rewards will strengthen the bond between you.

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