How to Stop Puppies From Going Upstairs

by Sarah Dray
    Don't let Puppy climb up and down and back up again.

    Don't let Puppy climb up and down and back up again.

    Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images

    A puppy who wants to climb your stairs is likely to have two things going for him: an almost unlimited amount of energy and a very stubborn conviction that he must get there. If you're convinced Puppy must remain downstairs, training and a few house adjustments can help you accomplish that -- but don't expect Puppy to be happy about it.

    Step 1

    Set a puppy gate at the bottom of the stairs, not the top. If you put it at the top, all you're saying is that it's OK to climb but he can't enjoy whatever magical rewards are hiding on the second floor. By setting the gate at the bottom, you're taking the actual stairs out of the equation and making the experience a lot less exciting, so puppy can focus on something else.

    Step 2

    Keep "interesting" things downstairs. That means no bringing food upstairs, no taking puppy toys to the second floor and don't let the cat go to sleep in the upstairs bedroom. The more interesting and magical the second floor is, the more your puppy will want to be a part of it.

    Step 3

    Teach Doggie boundaries by closing doors and containing him to a certain area of the house, even when you're home. Giving a puppy free reign of the house can be a recipe for disaster, as he's likely to get into all sorts of trouble. When you leave the house, confine him to a single area, such as the kitchen or the utility room, or put him into a crate so he stays away from trouble.

    Step 4

    Start training your puppy on basic commands like "no" and "stop." Use them with simple things first -- for example, to teach him not to chew on your shoes -- rather than with something he desperately wants, like climbing the stairs. Once he's mastered the "no" command, he's more likely to obey it even for things like climbing or reaching for something that's almost irresistible.

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    About the Author

    Sarah Dray has been writing since 1996. She specializes in health, wellness and travel topics and has credits in various publications including "Woman's Day," "Marie Claire," "Adirondack Life" and "Self." She is also a seasoned independent traveler and a certified personal trainer and nutrition consultant. Dray is pursuing a criminal justice degree at Penn Foster College.

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