Dogs are like humans – they love to get comfortable while taking a break. So when they spot an opportunity to snuggle on a soft couch beside you, it’s often too much of a temptation to resist.
While many love sharing the couch with their canine companions, others simply don’t want their dogs on the furniture. The truth is; once your pup has a taste for the good life, it can feel like a never-ending battle to try to keep dogs off the furniture.
Whether you’re introducing this rule with a new puppy or dog, or have changed your mind after allowing your dog on the furniture in the past, this article explores how to successfully keep dogs off the furniture.
Whether you choose to let your dog hang out on the furniture is a personal preference. It’s a great way to spend quality time with your dog, as long as you don’t mind extra fur and occasional muddy paw print on your cushion.
Though, dogs who believe they own the couch should not be allowed to relax on the furniture. If your dog has ever behaved aggressively to uphold their spot on the couch by growling or bearing their teeth at you, all couch privileges should end.
Your dog’s guarding issues should be addressed with a professional. You can then reassess if it’s appropriate to reintroduce couch privileges after training.
How to keep dogs off furniture
Below we’ve listed some useful tips and tricks on how to keep dogs off furniture.
Consistency is key
As consistency is essential in keeping dogs off furniture, it’s vital that everyone in the household know the rules. Part-time privileges make it more difficult for your pup to understand the rules.
It’s best to keep your dog off furniture from the very beginning. As you probably already know, it’s much more challenging to un-train the behavior once your dog has become accustomed to performing it.
It’s likely that your dog enjoys the couch because it’s way more comfortable and warmer than the area they’re supposed to lounging.
Make sure somewhere else is just as comfortable to relax instead of the furniture. As an alternative to a flat dog bed, try a donut shaped bed that has a bolster. This gives your dog something to lean up against. Keep the bed close to where you relax.
Consider investing in a few beds so your dog has somewhere to lounge in all of your main living spaces, such as the kitchen and bedroom. This will help break the habit.
Make the bed special and alluring by placing your pup’s favorite toys inside. If you haven’t already got one, a highly worthwhile investment is a Kong. Kong’s are hard rubber toys that can be stuffed with treats and are great for chewing on. These, as well as dental sticks, are sure to keep a dog distracted from getting on the furniture!
You can train your dog to go to their bed with the use of treats and rewards.
Train your dog the “Off” command
If you catch your dog in the catch, it’ll be easier to teach them to stay off the furniture.
Be strict and command your dog by saying “off” or “down” while making a sweeping hand movement as your dog moves from the furniture. Once your dog is off, command them to stay or lead them to their bed if you can. Repeat this every time you catch your pooch on the furniture. With practice, they’ll soon get the idea and will stay away from the furniture altogether.
If your dog refuses to listen to your commands, treats are a great way to grab their attention. Lure them to the ground by throwing their favorite treat on the floor. Eventually, your canine will begin to link the treat with staying on the floor or going to their bed, and will stop jumping on your furniture.
As well as treats, make sure to use plenty of enthusiastic praise and gentle strokes. This will encourage your dog to link your approval with their behavior, so they will carry on pleasing you in this way. Always acknowledge your dog every time they choose to lounge on their own bed instead of the furniture.
Crating your dog
You don’t want your pup to take a sneaky snooze on the furniture while you’re not home.
Prevent this from happening by obstructing the room, crating your dog or keeping your dog in another room.
You can also try placing aluminium foil, laundry baskets or plastic bottles filled with small stone or pennies on the furniture.
Cover your furniture evenly with aluminium foil. Tuck it underneath the cushions to keep it anchored in place. When your dog jumps on, they’ll be in for a surprise! Jumping on the aluminium foil will make a constant, strange, wrinkled noise and will be uncomfortable to lie down on – thus, likely to keep your dog away.
Alternatively, barricade your furniture with empty upside down laundry baskets. This will leave no lounging space for your dog. Soon enough, dogs will look for somewhere else to hang out – perhaps making their own bed more appealing!
To take it one step further, fill a few plastic bottles with pennies or stones. Put these in the laundry baskets on the furniture. When your dog jumps on and drops the bottles on the floor, it’ll make a noise that will frighten your pooch away from the furniture.
Paws for thought
Whatever technique you choose to try, remember that you should never lose your temper with a dog. Training will require patience and consistency, so it’s likely to take more time than you imagine.
Don’t abuse your dog in any way. Don’t ever yell, shout or hit them. You don’t want to harm them, nor want your dog to be frightened of you.
Final thoughts on how to keep dogs off furniture
Dogs love sprawling on your furniture because it’s super comfortable to rest on. While there are many ways of how to keep dogs off furniture, the best way to deal with the dog lounger is one that suits you and your dog.
We hope one of these methods has helped you to learn how to keep dogs off furniture!
Have you got any more techniques that could help? Please let us and our readers know by leaving a comment below!