Puppies are very cute bundles of energy – their antics are adorable but as they grow up, there will be plenty of times when you would like them to settle down and have some quiet time on their bed or mat and it’s important to start teaching your puppy to have good manners from the day you bring them home.
This is fairly easy to teach your puppy with a bit of work and patience.
Here's how to do it –
It is easiest if you have already taught your puppy to drop or lie down on request.
- Place the bed or mat in a quiet location with no distractions.
- Have lots of treats on hand. Ideally have a treat pouch attached to your pants or belt so treats are always easy to access.
- Stand close to your pup’s mat or bed and lure your puppy onto it. As soon as all their feet are on the bed praise your puppy and give them a treat.
- Once your puppy understands they get a treat when standing on their bed, start asking them to drop or lie down and reward them as soon as they do.
- Introduce a word or phrase like “bed” or “on your bed” and each time your puppy lies down and settles there give them a treat.
- Once your puppy is happily lying down on the bed, reward them and then give a release word such as ‘OK’ and encourage them to hop off the bed.
- Repeat this several times a session until your pup understands to lie on the bed until you ask them to hop off.
- Slowly increase the amount of time that you ask your puppy to stay on their bed.
- Once you have perfected this in one location, move the bed to other locations start the process again.
- Once your puppy is happily going to their bed when asked, you can give them a safe toy to chew on while on the bed, so they have something to help them relax.
As your puppy matures, you should be able to ask them to go to their bed at any time such as when you are eating or have visitors over.
Remember, puppies have a short attention span so don’t expect them to have a lot of patience to lie for long periods when they are little.
Young puppies can be very messy and often chew their beds, so I recommend using a washable matting like the Snooza Stay Dry Matting until they are fully toilet trained. It’s lightweight, fully washable and will handle any little accidents with ease.
Once your older puppy is ready for a proper bed and chewing behaviour has subsided choose something that is easily washable. A favourite bed of mine is the Snooza Pet Futon - the insulating properties of the wool keep them cool in summer and warm in winter and the cover is simple to throw in the wash. I also love the Calming Cuddler, the long pile fur is super soft and the high walls and deep sleeping area really let pups snuggle down and stay warm – this is one of Snooza’s most popular beds.
If your puppy is being crate trained, a lightweight and plush Multimat gives optimum comfort but and is great to travel with - plus, they also attach securely to the Snooza steel raised beds - a great option to keep your puppy comfortable and off the ground when they're outside.
Teaching your puppy to lie on their bed when asked is fairly simple and reinforces that their bed is their place to retreat to rest. This will help your puppy develop good manners and grow into a well behaved, wonderful member of your family.