How to Teach Your Dog to Sleep in its Own Bed
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Your dog's favorite place in the whole house is your bed. You may have bought them a bed much nicer than your own, but they will insist on sleeping in your bed. The reason is simple: you've allowed them on more than one occasion to do so and it's a space that smells like their best human friend. Therefore, they will always want to be there.
How to make your dog sleep in their own bed? The solution in theory is very easy: do not let them climb into your bed under any circumstances. However, many times we succumb to the charms of our dogs and that endearing look that tricks you into giving them what they want.
Teaching your dog to sleep in their own bed is a whole process that can last for weeks. But if you are patient and firm, you will succeed and recover your space. Continue reading this AnimalWised article where you will know discover how to teach your dog to sleep in their own bed.
Why your dog shouldn't sleep with you
Before you start teaching your dog to sleep in your bed, it will be crucial that you mentalise with this idea. That is, from the moment you start education, you must keep and follow the rules all the time, without exceptions.
If from time to time you let them lie on your bed, they will believe that your bed is theirs and when you ask them to get off, you will confuse them. The whole family should be aware of the new rules in order to not hinder the learning process.
Have a comfortable and pleasant bed for your dog. This should be their resting place where they can feel comfortable and safe. It should only be big enough for your dog to be comfortable. If the bed is too spacious or too small, your dog may feel uncomfortable.
Never scold your dog when lying in their bed. If you do, they will think that being in bed can lead to punishment. On the contrary, whenever you are there you must use positive reinforcement with a treat, a caress or a kind word, "Very good!".
How to make your dog use their own bed
From now on, you will have to teach your dog to recognize their bed and encourage them to use it. You must choose a word that you will not modify, but you can also choose a phrase. For example "Let's go to bed!" Or simply "Bed!" The first few times, all your dog has to do is look around. They will always direct attention to that space and you should leave some goodies in the bed so that they relate it to something positive.
The first few days you should reward your dog with kind words, petting and more snacks, just for being in their bed or going over to it. At the exact moment you do, give them the treat and say an effusive "Yes!" Or "Very good!" Which will then help them associate their good behavior with a positive response. Try sending them to bed or focus your attention on them and then give them a treat, at least several times a day, until you see progress. Never force them, they could interpret this experience very negatively.
When you educate, always have your dog's bed ready and all the treats possible. Move the bed a little, then place it on the floor and watch your dog, while you say the word "Bed!". Moving the bed will attract their attention and introduce dynamism because they will believe it is a game. When placing it down, invite your pet to lie down or sit on it then give them their prize!
Moving the bed to various places in the house, while doing the training, will make your dog focus more on the bed and not the place where they are. This way you will avoid your pet trying to climb beds or sofas. If they do, do not scold them, guide them with a treat to their bed and offer it there.
You can teach your dog to lie down and tell them to do it in bed so that they understand it is a place of relaxation and have a desire to lie there.
You should place the bed whenever you want. These places do not necessarily have to be next to you, at least not until the end of the training. We want to try and make your dog a little more independent during their rest time.
After encouraging them to use their bed with treats, and as they progress, only try and say the chosen word and reduce the prize giving. But don't forget the verbal reinforcement.
Once we already have them in their bed at night, if we see that they want to get out of bed to come to yours, try a forceful "No!" And take them back to their bed if they don't do it on their own. Give them a treat to reinforce the good attitude or give them some touch so they can go to sleep and relax. Remember to reinforce these processes as often as necessary.
Sometimes the dog will not want to use their bed because of the heat, for example. In these cases you should not scold them.
During the day do not close the door. Your pet will feel that they can come and go from your room whenever you want and be close to you, without feeling isolated or rejected. Only at night can you think about closing the door. This will teach your dog that this will be the time for everyone to go to bed. If your dog cries, take them back to their bed with a lot of affection and perhaps offer a night treat that is different from the previous one. Always be sure to give some pets and then you can return to your own bed for a good night's sleep.
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