Dogs dog-on-the-bed

Published on April 11th, 2014 | by Debbie Martin


What House Rules Should You Have When Training Your Dog?

When you are training a new dog, it is important to consider your house rules and the guidelines that you set. If you don’t set boundaries in your household right away, you can let your dog developed bad habits – which will be difficult to train them out of later. Here are some of the important rules that you should establish right away:

Is the Dog Allowed on the Furniture?

Make sure that you decide this right away, as it will be confusing for your dog if you change your mind. You might want to cuddle on the sofa with your furry friend, or you might not want your furniture constantly covered in fur and dog-smell – it’s up to you as long as you decide early and are consistent.

No Jumping Up

If your dog is in the habit of jumping up on guests, it is important to establish this rule right away. Especially if you have a large dog, this behaviour can be threatening to young children or people who don’t feel comfortable around dogs. Use dog training techniques to discourage your pet from this behaviour – it shouldn’t take long to train them away from this habit.

Eating People Food

Are you okay with your dog eating people food and sitting near the table while you eat? If you tell your dog to go away while you are eating, but then also slip him some scraps from your plate, you are giving him a very confusing mixed message. Some pet owners require that their dog lie down in another room while they eat dinner, to discourage begging.

Sleeping in the Bed

Is your dog allowed in the bed with you at night, or is this strictly forbidden? Many pet owners don’t want their dog to sleep in the bed with them, while others love to snuggle up to their furry friends at night. Either is fine, as long as you decide early on and keep your message consistent.

Responsibility for Walks, Feeding and Cleaning Up

If you live in a household with other people, it is important to establish who is responsible for walking the dog, cleaning up its poo, feeding it and otherwise performing all of the important care tasks. If the expectations are not clear, you could end up each thinking that the other one was going to feed the dog – resulting in poor Fluffy not getting fed at all! If you want to share the responsibility, you could consider taking dog duty on alternate days or arranging a schedule that works for your needs.

These are just a few of the important house rules that you should establish when you are training your dog. It is crucial that these behaviours and rules are clearly outlined early on, so that your dog knows what it can and cannot do. These clear expectations will make it a lot easier to train your dog in the future.

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About the Author

Debbie Martin has worked at Beeston Animal Health for over five years, having previously worked as a nurse in equine and small animal practice. Although generally involved with aspects of marketing these days and putting her psychology degree to good use, she still has a great depth of up to date knowledge in all creatures great and small. Debbie lives at home with her partner and two children and spends much of her spare time looking after her horses, dogs and cats or at the home farm with the cows, sheep and turkeys.

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