When trying to figure out how to keep the dog off the furniture you have to consider your own behavior, what is fair to the dog, and any other dogs in the house.
One of my greatest pet peeves in the industry is the evil “retractable leash.” Even before I became a professional trainer, as a jogger, this retractable apparatus was the bane of my existence; the constant entanglement of my feet in the cords of dogs running wild.
The next time you think your pet has sought revenge on you, try and look at it from their point of view. It will liberate you and your animal companion.
When he obeys, give him the treat, praise him, and use your other hand to pet him under the ears. Continue to do this and the dog will start to feel that a soft tug on the collar means, he’s supposed to hold still.
Remember what Stanley Coren said about forcing a dog over on her back every day? (See The Myth of Alpha (Part 1). He said that this position "signifies submission to the authority of a dominant member of the pack." But dogs don't think symbolically.
If the alpha dog theory were true, I would be creating problems by allowing my dog Freddie—an un-neutered male Dalmatian—to think he was the pack leader, right?
There are two simple rules about jumping up: the dog should never be rewarded for jumping up without being asked to do so first, and 2.) the dog should never be punished for the behavior, at least not overtly.
Positive reinforcement means using rewards for behaviors you want your dog to do and repeat. When your dog performs the sit behavior for example, reward him.
Colleen Pelar, CPDT, is the author of Living with Kids and Dogs.
Article: A New Dog with Old Kids
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