Snuggling with Fido in bed can offer warmth and comfort, but it also contains some risk. Bacteria, germs, parasites and other illnesses can be transferred from your dog through a scratch, lick or goodnight kiss. Allowing your pup into the bed also changes the hierarchy of the dog's pack, which is your family. It might lead him to believe that you're a weak pack leader and cause him to stop obeying your commands, according to dog trainer Joseph Tullier as cited on WAFB News. Training your dog to not sleep on the bed can protect your health and remind him who's the boss.
Purchase a comfortable dog bed. Place the new dog bed next to your own bed. Avoid placing the dog bed too far away from your bed, which might cause Fido too much stress and anxiety. Instead, begin weaning him away from sleeping in your bed gradually. You can move the dog bed to another location once he becomes accustomed to it.
Teach your dog the "Off" command the next time he jumps on your bed. Avoid showing anger, yelling or sternly ordering him to get off the bed. Issue the "Off" command in a firm yet calm manner, and then gently push him off the bed, recommends Tullier. Praise Fido when he leaves your bed. Don't permit him back on the bed no matter how much he cries -- eventually he'll realize it's no use and give up.
Lead him to the dog bed. Place a few of his favorite dog toys in the bed as well as a piece of your clothing with your scent on it. For a puppy, put a blanket in his bed that contains the scent of his siblings, along with a warm water bottle and cushions to simulate the bodies of other pups and help him feel more secure. Praise him and reward him with a dog treat once he lies down in his bed. Avoid giving him a treat each time he goes to his own bed, which can cause unhealthy weight gain and also lead to begging.
Avoid allowing Fido back on your bed, even occasionally. Be consistent to obtain the fastest and most lasting results. Continue repeating the "Off" command whenever he jumps back on the bed. Gently put him on the floor if he ignores the command. Remember to always praise him each time he leaves your bed and goes to his own bed. Over time, he'll learn to associate receiving praise and treats with the right action, which will encourage him to sleep in his own bed. You can move the dog bed to another location in your home after he becomes used to sleeping in it.
Items You Will Need
- Dog bed
- Dog toys
- Piece of old clothing
- Warm water bottle
- The Telegraph: How Can I Stop My Dog Sleeping in My Bed?
- HouseBeautiful: How Can I Train My Dog to Stay Off My Bed?
- VeterinaryPartner.com: Sleeping on the Bed
- WAFB.com: Let Sleeping Dogs Lie, Just Not on Your Bed
- Dog Behaviour Advice: Getting the Dog Out of the http://odin.demandstudios.com/ui/write/app.html#view-urlBedroom
- NBCNews.com: Out of the Sack, Cat! Sleeping With Pets Carries Disease Risk
- Jupiterimages/Stockbyte/Getty Images