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How to Stop Your Dog Jumping on the Couch

Once upon a time, I had a dog that refused to stop jumping on the couch. I taught him well enough to stay off the couch when I was home, but the second I went to bed or left the front door, I could hear the jingle of his collar as he jumped up into his favourite spot....

...and got hair all over the freshly cleaned cushions. It was a battle we fought for most of his life and it brought me no end of frustration.

Since then, I've learned that there are quite a few little tricks and training cues you can use to keep your buddy off the couch and it starts when they're young.

As a Puppy

Dogs are very respectful of territorial restrictions. If you tell them not to enter a room or claim the door as your own, they generally respect it. For the most part, a dog will only start to cross these boundaries when you either give up your alpha leadership or neglect to draw the boundaries.

So, from the second your puppy enters the house, set clear boundaries on where he can go and when he can go there. If you need help with dog boundary training, check out some of our dog ebooks. While he's still young, be incredibly consistent. Eventually, you'll be able to make exceptions and the dog will understand, but right now, you need to be very clear.

This means setting household rules as well and making sure that everyone in the house follows them. Children are big culprits here, letting dogs get away with all sorts of things they shouldn't. The goal here is to train the dog that it is your couch and he cannot be up there.

When You're Not Home

Of course, it doesn't always work. For some reason, the allure of that soft, cushy space that you use all the time is too much and, when you're gone, the dog becomes the master of the house, so why shouldn't he be able to jump up there?

 Dog Aggression

Yelling at your dog and trying to catch him in the act is not going to work. The point is that he knows when he'll get caught and he waits until that time passes. So, we need to find a deterrent that will teach him that the couch is an unpleasant place to be.

Avoid sprays and odors as they can make the couch even less comfortable and usually don't work for jumping up - they'll just keep the dog from licking the couch.

Crate training is a fantastic way to avoid this when you're not home. It will allow you to keep the dog in a closed space whenever you're not home or asleep and will train your dog that he has his own place to sleep.

Additionally, you can try laying things across the couch. Cardboard boxes, plastic mats, balloons, books, newspapers. Pretty much anything that isn't as comfortable as the actual couch cushions will convince your dog that jumping up there isn't worth it anymore.

On the flip side of this, you'll need to deal with all that junk strewed throughout your living room. So, it is still a good idea to give your dog an alternate place to sleep, never allow him on the furniture (even when he looks really cute), and keep an eagle eye on him at all times.

You may not be able to completely stop the behaviour when you leave him alone, but you can eventually train him that the raised spaces are not for dogs and he has his own bed to enjoy. Ultimately, there's not much more you can do to convince him to stay in his own space.

If you want to learn the exact same strategies and tactics that Pro Dog trainers use everyday in their Dog Training Businesses to solve dog behavior problems once and for all, then check out the site below:

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