11 week old puppy running and jumping on sofa even when people sitting on them!

Discussion in 'Labrador Puppies' started by Jane Rogers, Jun 8, 2017.

  1. Jane Rogers

    Jane Rogers Registered Users

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    Hello I am new to this. I have an 11 week old black Labrador. She is gorgeous if somewhat crazy but she keeps running and jumping on the sofas even when people are sitting on them and she then snaps at me and barks if I get her down and say firmly 'no'. How do I stop her. I don't want her to hate me but she hurts when she jumps.
     
  2. Plum's mum

    Plum's mum Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Hello, my pup was exactly the same, exactly. She didn't respond to anything it seemed, although I'm not sure I tried any technique for long enough. She was particularly bad with my 80 year old dad! She'd leap up on him in my home and at his (but not my mum) yet he never encouraged it. I hate to say this but she's only just stopped doing it to him and she's 8 months!
    She stopped doing it to my son and I much longer ago. I did start letting her get on the sofa for various reasons (I'd originally decided no sofa) so it probably stopped at this point.
    That's been pretty unhelpful, I'm sorry! Others will be able to offer more practical solutions.
     
  3. Jane Rogers

    Jane Rogers Registered Users

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    Thank you at least I know it is nothing I have done. Perhaps I will start letting her up on the sofa and see what happens!
     
  4. Brimley

    Brimley Registered Users

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    My 3-month old does this. When he wants to play he jumps at me if I am on the couch and then he bites me. When I tell him no, he gets an attitude and barks at me. I was told that he was probably getting overexcited. This past week, I've been either taking my attention away by leaving the room, or popping him in his crate until he calms down. I've also started to give him kongs in the evenings to keep him occupied. None of these tricks have "taught" him to not jump or bite, but it has helped my sanity a little bit.

    Also, I've noticed that when I take Brimley for a really long walk/run/swim, or have him over at my parent's house where he can play with their dogs, he gets tired out and is much calmer at night. The more exercise the better!
     
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  5. Samantha Jones

    Samantha Jones Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Hi Bailey used to do that - although we have always allowed him on the sofa - however he did it (and still on occasion does) jump on us when he wants to play. Particularly with my OH as this will initiate some much loved rough housing play - probably why he doesn't do it to me. To make it slightly easier on myself when he was smaller (he is now 16 months old and 28kgs) I encouraged him to pick up a toy before getting up on the sofa with me - this stalled the biting and nipping - I could fuss and cuddle him and he happily chewed on his toy rather than me!

    A rod I have made for my own back is - if Bailey gets into my seat then I have to drop a treat on his bed to get him off the sofa, I then sit down, he eats the treat then gets back up and lays with his head in my lap. My OH on the other hand gives the down cue and down the dog gets....oh well.....
     
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  6. Naya

    Naya Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    If you don't want the pup on the sofa, use a treat to lure her down, only giving it to her when she's off. Give a cue word at the same time, such as 'off'. You will need to do this consistently as it will take a while for them to learn it.
    @Brimley - It's not advisable to go on really long walks or let them play excessively at this age. All you will end up with is an even fitter dog that needs even more walking as they get older and a dog who always wants to play and won't settle. You can also cause damage to their joints as they are still growing. Doing lots of little training sessions throughout the day will make them more tired.
     
  7. Brimley

    Brimley Registered Users

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    How long of a walk and how much play would you suggest at this age?
     
  8. Snowy

    Snowy Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    I'm no expert, but our 14 week old gets a walk around his boundary area (about 1/3 km), then some free time on the grass (sniffing mostly, some recalls and a couple of retrieves). Total takes maybe 30 minutes and after that he is ready for another snooze.
     
  9. Snowy

    Snowy Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    I'm back to this thread to ask for advice for myself.

    We decided early on that our boy wouldn't be allowed on the sofa. Now at 14 weeks he can jump there without difficulty.

    Initially it was quite difficult to bribe him down again with a treat (even high value treats), he just seemed to be too comfortable. :)

    After some work, I can get him down again with a treat, but then he will return to the sofa again quite soon, because he knows he gets another treat for jumping off :(

    Up until recently, he had his own soft bed, however this got heavily chewed (and, erm, repeatedly "loved" ;) ), until the zip went and the insides spilled out. I'm reluctant to invest in another soft bed until his chewing dies down a bit, so for now he has large vet fleeces to lie on.

    Advice welcome :)
     
  10. Boogie

    Boogie Moderator

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    We don't venture in to the front room until the puppy is five months old. Then we go in at 9pm and expect them to settle, on lead if necessary :)

    People who can't close off the room with the sofa in put upturned stools on the sofas until the pups get the 'no sofas' message.


    .
     
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  11. Snowy

    Snowy Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Thanks Boogie. I'll give the upturned stools a try.
     
  12. Plum's mum

    Plum's mum Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    I tried the upturned chairs/coffee tables/stools but no dice with Plum, she'd squeeze into the smallest gap. Drove me bonkers.

    Good luck!

    And vet fleeces are just grand when you've got a bed chewer.
     
  13. Elsie

    Elsie Registered Users

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    Has anyone had success with keeping their puppies off the sofa? I have a similar issue.
    Since I stopped using the playpen our 6 month puppy is constantly jumping onto the sofa. Her comfy bed is chewed-up so only vetbed now. She jumps onto sofa, we get her off with a treat but a few seconds later she is back up there. We've tried various obstacles on the sofa but she squeezes in. I'm resorting to crating her when it gets out of hand, but I don't want her to think if the crate as a punishment. How long before she stops? Does it get better or do people give up?
     
  14. T Reischl

    T Reischl Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    As I have written before, we don't work with Murphy by using treats to get him to do something.

    The sofa thing is a tough one, for sure. Sometimes it would take us 5 minutes (no exaggeration) to get him to get off. Firm voice, fingers pointing at floor, maybe a foot away from the floor. Get down. Get down. Get down...... It worked. We also would tell him to "get on your rug" (his favorite place while we watch tv). It takes a lot of patience to outlast your average labrador, they can be some kind of special stubborn.

    Once in a great while he will give it another go. Leap right up on the sofa and quickly lay down like he has been there all day. It only takes one or two "Get downs" now. Like I said, it is rare, maybe once every few months.

    Someone above wrote exactly the reason we do not use treats. These guys are SMART, I am certain they equate jumping up on the furniture with getting a treat.

    We never yell or raise our voices to Murphy, just a firm, serious tone.

    BTW, if you had the puppy on the sofa with you when it was real small. . . .well, you trained it to think the sofa was a great place to be!
     
  15. snowbunny

    snowbunny Administrator Forum Supporter

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    The problem is, if you don't use rewards in your training, you have to use punishments. There's no two ways about it - that's how behavioural science works. If something you do is more likely to make a behaviour happen again, it is a reward. If something you do makes a behaviour less likely to happen again, it is a punishment. It is up to you whether you choose to use punishments in your dog training, but you should be absolutely clear on the above. I'll say it again: if it makes the behaviour more likely, it is a reward. If it makes the behaviour less likely, it's a punishment. We don't get to say what is punishing and what is rewarding, that depends on our individual dogs. If I used a firm tone with my older dogs, it would stop them doing something. Ergo, it is a punishment. If I used a firm tone with my puppy, it would have no effect, ergo it is not a punishment, but it would also not work.

    So, the problem you have is you're being reactive. The dog jumps up, you tell him to get down. Rinse and repeat. Yes, the dog can work out a chain for behaviours to get a reward. He learns that jumping up means he gets attention (reward), you tell him to get off and, when he does, he gets a treat (reward).

    The thing to do is become proactive in your training, rather than reactive. Give him a place to be, and reward him for being on it. Make it more rewarding to stay on his bed than on the sofa. As Susan Garrett would say, in all our interactions with our dogs, one is the "shaper" and the other is the "shapee". Meaning, one is controlling the other one's movements. Her example she gives in her videos is of the owner who lifts a plate higher as they walk across the room, to stop the dog getting the food. The dog is shaping us to change our behaviour. If the dog jumping on the sofa triggers a behaviour in you, it's the same thing; the dog is shaping you, not the other way round. If, however, you train your dog that it is more rewarding to stay on his bed, then it's you doing the shaping. Well done, you just trained your dog, rather than the other way round :)

    Personally, I don't give two hoots if my dogs are on the sofa, but they have been trained (proactively) to get down when asked. The trigger of them getting down comes from me, not them. They jump up, that's fine, until I want to eat my dinner, or I want a bit more room.
    One thing I do care about is them getting in the way when I'm training one of the other dogs. Comparing the two situations here - in your case, your puppy gets the reward of a comfortable place to sit when he jumps on the sofa. In my case, the dogs get the reward of running around, being close to me and playing if they interfere with my training. You don't want your dog to have that reward, I don't want mine to have the other; so they're very similar. How do we stop our dogs from doing something they find rewarding?

    It's very easy. You train an alternative behaviour and you build the value in that. I've recently started using raised beds for this, and it's been brilliant for my puppy, as they give a far clearer boundary than a piece of vet bed. You teach your puppy to go to the bed and you reward that. You build the value in the bed by rewarding a lot. And you gradually build the distraction, still building value in the bed. Wherever I can, I build value. So, every time we go for a walk, I have the dogs jump onto their beds to have their collars put on. They love their collars going on, so the bed is being reinforced (without treats) and it makes for walk preparation to be a bit calmer. Win-win.
    I'd recommend the Boundary Games stuff by Absolute Dogs if you can get your hands on it - it's brilliant for training this. And, once you've built the value in that bed, you don't have to keep on rewarding, or nagging. I can have my puppy relaxing on her bed while one of the others plays with her favourite tugger right in front of her, and I don't have to keep stopping to feed her. Because, I've built the value in the bed, and she's learnt that I will eventually release her to have a go herself. Sometimes on the bed itself, because, hey, why not use the opportunity to build the value of the bed some more?

    This sort of training is fun not frustrating because we're rewarding the good stuff that simply conflicts with the bad stuff, rather than having to respond to the bad stuff when it happens at the dog's whim.

    Be proactive. Use treats. Use games. Use environmental rewards. Just, be proactive.
     
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  16. Boogie

    Boogie Moderator

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    We have a complicated system furniture wise.

    Well, not really :)

    Tatze my pet dog is allowed on 'her' chair in the kitchen, but not our chairs. She's allowed on my sofa when I'm on it in the front room, but not when I'm not.

    The two pups are not allowed on any furniture at all. I train them just like snowbunny says, making the behaviour I want more rewarding than the behaviour they want - and always giving alternatives = something they must do, rather than something they must not do. If I am on the sofa and they try to get up, which they do in the early days, I put them on the lead with a chew toy (so that they don't chew the lead) and treats for good behaviour. They soon learn. By five months old everyone knows where they are and are not allowed.

    I use three kinds of treats - kibble from their allowance, dried liver and dried fish cubes. I vary what I use, the default being kibble and the jackpot being fish cubes. They never know which it will be.
     
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  17. Snowy

    Snowy Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Since Nelson got his own raised bed, he has stopped trying to get on the sofa.
     
  18. selina27

    selina27 Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Interesting, they just like to be off the ground, don't they? And comfortable.
     
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  19. T Reischl

    T Reischl Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Maybe I needed to make my post a bit clearer.

    We don't give him treats for behavior. When we told him to get down and he finally would get down, he got rewarded with praise, petting, etc.

    My eyebrow slides way up my forehead when it comes to folks psychoanalyzing behavior. Oh sure, "See, I give the dog a treat when they do something I want them to do so therefore. . . .it means. . ." Uh huh. We all know that Pavlovian responses can be elicited in dogs. I just do not feel it is necessary to use food to get the behavior desired.

    BTW, a firm voice is not punishment just because someone on the internet says it is and writes long windy paragraphs trying to prove their theorem.
     
  20. snowbunny

    snowbunny Administrator Forum Supporter

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    I'm not trying to prove anything and I'm sorry that you seem to have taken it personally. I am just passing on the facts, which have been shown to be true by many people far more intelligent and qualified than myself. I just like to educate myself on canine behaviour, the reasons for it, and how best to change it when it doesn't suit me. Whether you choose to do the same is entirely up to you. As I made very clear, it would not be punishment for my puppy.

    If you are interested, I can cite my sources (peer-reviewed scientific studies, not just someone on the internet) to show that this is simple behavioural science. But I sadly don't think you'd be open to it.

    By the way, there's big difference between Pavlovian responses (which work on the dog's involuntary responses, like blinking and drooling) and training through operant conditioning (which works on the dog's voluntary responses, like moving from A to B). Just so we're staying accurate. :)

    You carry on doing what works for you, I have no interest in trying to change the minds of people who are happy with their methods. I'm simply trying to pass on my knowledge to those who are interested in learning, and point out along the way why I consider these methods to be superior. It's not a personal attack on you. If you would like to respond with why you think your way is better, then please do. I'm absolutely open to learn something new.
     

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