So much trouble with blankets, mats, etc.

Discussion in 'Clicker Training' started by Newlabpup, Nov 6, 2015.

  1. Newlabpup

    Newlabpup Registered Users

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    Hi all, I know I recently posted a similar post but this time coming from a different angle. Otis (now about 18 weeks) is very difficult around blankets and the mat that I am trying to get him to understand is for settling on. If I have the blanket on me (like on the couch), he's gotten much better about understanding that it's not a toy for him and to leave it alone or enjoy laying on it with me.

    If a blanket, or his mat is on the floor... he immediately thinks it's a giant toy. If it's a blanket, forget it he's biting and humping it like mad. With the mat, I can never leave it out for extended periods of time because he would spend the entire day humping it and playing with it. When he starts playing with the mat I do not reward him, but I'm starting to think that what he's doing is far more rewarding than any treat I could give him. Should I leave the mat out and just reward him when he settles on it?

    Has anyone else experienced this issue with settling on mats? And does anyone have any advice for it?
     
  2. Boogie

    Boogie Registered Users

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    Have you tried vet bed? My Twiglet will play with and start humping any blanket, mat, towel or pillow (and try to get at them when I'm carrying them) but not vet bed. All three of mine have only used vet bed to lie/sleep on.
     
  3. Newlabpup

    Newlabpup Registered Users

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    Vet bed! I've never heard of it!
     
  4. SteffiS

    SteffiS Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    I'm afraid Ripple is quite keen on humping his vetbed!
     
  5. Boogie

    Boogie Registered Users

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  6. bbrown

    bbrown Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Obi has given up humping everything......except his vet bed which he will drag out of his crate if I don't close the door ;)

    He ended up sleeping at night on vet bed as he chewed everything else. Now the chewing and general humping seems pretty much done but the love (ahem) for his nightime bed remains. In the day there are other beds he could sleep on but he chooses the floor.
     
  7. Newlabpup

    Newlabpup Registered Users

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    That picture! So adorable!

    Okay, well maybe I'll have to put a hold on finding a proper bed. What about a mat? I like the idea of being able to tell him to go to his mat to settle or for whatever reason. Any advice on getting a mat that will be hump-free? I was thinking maybe something more sturdy, like a rubber door mat.
     
  8. Newlabpup

    Newlabpup Registered Users

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    Also, I'm in the U.S. so I'm not sure there is the exact product available! I'm willing to try the vet bed if it's available in the U.S., even if just to put in his crate at night!
     
  9. JulieT

    JulieT Registered Users

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    I use quite sturdy canvas waterproof mats around the place and in crates etc,. Charlie isn't a great humper of things though time to time he'll find something that takes his fancy! But the canvas mats can't really be 'scrunched up' into co-operating soft bundles like softer mats, cushions, blankets etc.

    I know you are in the U.S. but these are the mats. I have a couple of different sizes and use the smaller ones for training.

    http://www.muddypaws.co.uk/dog-beds/waterproof-beds/heavy-duty-waterproof-crate-pad
     
  10. Cath

    Cath Registered Users

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    If you go on ebay for the USA, they sell vet bed.
     
  11. Newlabpup

    Newlabpup Registered Users

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    Just an update! So today I bought a super inexpensive rubber mat to try out. It's virtually un-humpable! He has tried a few times to scratch at it and chew it but it's been easily redirectable!

    In just a half day he's learned that when he's on the mat he should be calmly in "down" or "sit". He's able to get on his mat with a little help via hand motion from me, but he's gotten pretty good at it just from a short time of working at it, he just needs more work on the verbal "on your mat" cue. I'm pretty excited about this! It's certainly not a permanent solution and hopefully one day we'll be able to get him a proper bed, but for now it works!
     
  12. Cath

    Cath Registered Users

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    I will keep my fingers crossed for you. :D
     
  13. Cath

    Cath Registered Users

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    Oh Boogie what a lovely photo and what a nice heart for the puppy to cuddle up to.
     
  14. drjs@5

    drjs@5 Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Ah well done!
    I was going to suggest what we used, just a rubber doormat - the kind that sooks up water supposedly - but you have found your solution!
    We used it at the entry to the kitchen to send Lilly to if she was getting under our feet.

    I was wondering if Mags (@Boogie) was on commission from the makers of VetBed ;)
     
  15. Oberon

    Oberon Moderator Forum Supporter

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    Great job!! Otis, I hope that you can one day graduate to something cushier ;)
     
  16. BonkersAsConkers

    BonkersAsConkers Registered Users

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    Was going to suggest something like a carpet tile/off cut.
    Also start tiny - high value treat, make sure he's peckish so more interested in food than luuuurve, only asking for half a second of settled behaviour to start with, and really rapid reinforcement rate until he's starting to forget that he ever did anything other than lie nicely on it.
    Put it away between training sessions so he can't practise other behaviours
    And train this behaviour when he's not in too energetic a mood - or overtired (which can cause them to get a bit manic).
    Basically stacking the odds in your favour as much as poss until the behaviour is established and you can start generalising to other beds/blankets/locations etc
     

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