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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hiya,

Just been looking through some of the photos (such cute dogs!) and couldn't help notice that some involve sofas/chairs.

One of the first things that our trainer ever told us was to never allow your dog onto your furniture. He said that this would be a clear sign to Oscar that we were higher in the pack than him and would really help teach him his place and therefore help his training (because he had to obey us).

Therefore, Oscar has never been allowed on our sofas and even when he was a tiny pup, if he wanted to be on us for a cuddle, we sat on the floor.

Just wondered whether the other labs on here are allowed on the furniture or not and whether there actually are problems with a dog not knowing to obey his owner as a result!

I couldn't say whether it has worked or not with Oscar, as he seems to decide on a daily basis how much of what we ask him to do he actually will! :) bless him

Sarah x
 

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I've always allowed Corbie on my lap for cuddles, on the sofa, but now he's getting bigger (he's 3 months) he has discovered he can put his front paws on the sofa and then up goes one back leg and then the other - usually when we are out of the room :lol:

I always take him off if he goes up and will only allow him to sit on there if its on our laps - if he moves onto the sofa itself, he's straight off. He has his large doggy cushion in the lounge for laying on so we encourage him to use that.

So yes, I agree with what your trainer has said, even if I've not strictly put it into practice - trouble is I've grown up with small dogs that stay lap size :D !
 

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I have never let Harvey on the sofa. Partly because when he is a fully grown 80lb+ dog there probably wouldnt be room for me but mainly because my wife told me I must'nt let him on there! ...and I know my place in the pack here! :lol:
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
:D

yes.. I must admit when Oscar was tiny, I walked into the lounge a few times and my husband was having a sneaky cuddle with him on the sofa, despite me telling him not to.

I obviously need to follow your wife's training regime for husbands too :)
 

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Hi Sarah,

Interesting topic.

We have allowed Bradley on our furniture in the motorhome, yes, it has protective covers thankfully - so muddy foot prints & dog hair can be removed regularly. He's not allowed on the bed though - and at the moment he cannot reach it, as it's raised - which is pretty good really! Bradley does obey us yes, and i think he knows his place.

When we move back home, into a house - i would be rather inclined to keep him of the furniture, he pretty much always sleeps in his bed now anyway - so as long as he has a big bed to himself, i don't think he will mind much! :)

One of the first things that our trainer ever told us was to never allow your dog onto your furniture. He said that this would be a clear sign to Oscar that we were higher in the pack than him and would really help teach him his place and therefore help his training (because he had to obey us).
I have heard this also, i've also heard it's a good idea to stand in their bed from time to time (when we do this to Brad's bed he gives us a very funny look!) and to also stand over them when they are lying on their backs.

Good luck with the training, sounds like you're doing a great job.

Julie
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yes we were told that there are various things that you should do to make sure that your dog knows his place in the pack. We've tried to stick to most of them a much as possible.

* Make sure there are places your dog can't go (ie upstairs, on furniture etc) but everywhere that he can go, you also do (ie. I used to sit in Oscar's bed, and when he had his crate used to try and get inside)

* Always say hello to the people in the house before the dog when you get home (hard sometimes when he's desperate for attention)

* lift up his bowl while he's eating occasionally, so he knows you can take it away if you want to

* always make sure your dog eats his dinner after you do (we used to do this when he was little and ate 3 times a day, but now only do it if our meal happens to fall around the same time as his)

I'm sure there are lots more that I have forgotten, but that gives you the gyst.

Sarah x
 

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Sarah .. training a husband is very similar to bringing up a young Lab ... so no over exertion, things such as gardening, washing dishes, DIY etc, should be kept to a minimum (preferabley banned completely!) .. plenty of treats to be given to encourage good behaviour so make sure the fridge has plenty of cold beer at all times (avoid the cheap brands, bad for the digestion!) ... socialisation is important so a few evenings at the pub each week should be encouraged .. boredom needs to be avoided at all times so the tv is best kept tuned to the sport channels (soaps can induce sulking and bad temper) .. one area that does need careful thought though is that of neutering, not to be recommended really as his usefulness may be curtailed somewhat .. however, if he shows a tendency to stray then you may find the idea quite tempting! :wink:
 

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:lol: :lol: :lol: at NigelB - brilliant.

* lift up his bowl while he's eating occasionally, so he knows you can take it away if you want to
I hear trainers advocating this one from time to time, and I have to say it makes me mad. All dogs resource guard, and food is a precious resource. If you've given a dog food, why should you then take it away (not aimed at anyone :D ) Food guarding is perfectly normal doggy behaviour even if it's not acceptable to us. If you want to control food, put the food down and make your dog wait. I can't help wondering how many people have been bitten or have made their dogs food aggressive by using these techniques - ok, not many lab owners, they're big softies, but still many others.

My dogs are not allowed upstairs (my choice - I like at least one dog hair free zone), they are allowed on the sofas, and they eat when I let them :D that may or may not be after me. It has never caused me any problems.

Whilst I understand the theory behind these ideas, which are based more on how wolves behave, and indeed think they can help in cases where, I think far more important is to build up the relationship between you, and your dog. Incorporate training the moment your pup comes home, enrol in classes and once he has learned a command, insist that he does it.
Obviously, confidence and experience helps too, but the main thing I would say is to start as you mean to go on. If you don't want him on the sofa, never let him get on.
JMHO :)
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Nigel - you had both me and my husband laughing out loud with your comments! thanks for that :D

After seeing his face when we took Oscar in to be castrated the week before last when the vet was explaining the procedure, I'm not sure I'd ever get here near a hospital for anything ever again, just in case! :)

Lablover - thanks for your comments.

When we first bought Oscar home and got advice from a trainer, there were deinately things that he suggested that we agreed with, and other things that we thought were a bit unecessary. As after all, we had brought Oscar into our home as a pet for us to love and look after, and not something to control.

We therefore listened to everything that the trainer suggested and then adapted it to suit our relationship with Oscar. And as you said, everything that we decided to include we have done with him from day 1 and (apart from my husband sneaking him onto the sofa for a cuddle in the first week or to, when I was out of the room!) been consistent with it.

Taking his bowl away is not something we have actually ever put into practice, rather we have made sure that he only eats when he is told. So, as you suggested, Oscar has always sat my his mat when we bring his bowl in and he waits until we say 'go' before he begins to eat.

As first time dog owners, we have had to learn a lot about training as we have gone along, but the one thing I would always agree to is that in order for training, of any sort, to work you must be consistent and make it fun - a few treats have always made Oscar learn very quickly.

Sarah x
 

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As Brady is our first Lab, we're learning as we go along. He is allowed to sleep on the sofa (I grew up with sofa-dwelling Basset Hounds :wink: ), but he usually prefers to flop onto the floor if he's having a proper snooze. If he gets over excited when playing we always put him onto the floor and make sure we are "taller" than him (standing over him usually gets the message across - and turning your back will normally make him stop barking). If he's particularly "hyper" a ten minute spell in the kitchen on his own usually gets him to calm down.

Our vet suggested to us that as labs can be a bit "pushy" it was an idea to lift the food dish while he's eating from time to time, and to put something interesting in it before putting it back down. We haven't done this however, as Brady can eat his meals so quickly we don't usually have the chance! :D
 

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Confession time now I'm afraid.....Smudge sleeps on the sofa, and on our bed with us - oops!

We have just started dog training and so this kind of thing hasn't been mentioned there yet. Nor on the other matters either but I'll let you know if they come up.

We don't remove Smudge's food from him though I have read about it. We do go near to him when he is eating though and he has never shown any aggression so hopefully that's a good sign. We just kind of leave him in peace.

He seems to know his place but like all pups, he's a bit of a scamp! Gotta love him though!

All the best,
Nicola.

PS. One of the main reasons he does sleep on the sofa and our bed is that he's so settled and peaceful in those places, which in turn means Chris and I are more relaxed! Lesson 1 though - black labs and cream bedding do not mix well!
 

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LOL Nicola - I am so glad all our furniture is cream coloured, Brady is a good match!

I have also started wearing light coloured clothes a lot more often :lol:
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
:D

our creamy/grey carpet always looked awful when we just had Oscar (he seems to shed his black hair everywhere). But we found the perfect solution...

We got two mostly white cats!

Our carpets are now 3 times as hairy, but as the white cancels out a lot of the black it doesn't look as bad in between hooverings :D

x
 
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