Easy Training Trick to Help a Little Puppy Overcome Her Fear of Stairs

By: Sam Kanouse

Published Date: March 15, 2018

In this Omaha puppy training session we worked with a pair of Morkie litter mates who are seven-months-old, Ginger and Clyde, who needed help with potty training and helping Ginger overcome her fear of stairs.

After I arrived I sat down to chat with the guardians to learn about their main puppy behavior concerns. One of their main concerns was house breaking the puppies so they would stop going potty in the house. They typically were having potty accidents at night when the guardians couldn’t monitor their behavior, so I suggested that they use a puppy playpen at night to restrict their access to the house to help them break the habit of going potty inside at night.

Another potty training issue was that Ginger was scared to go down the stairs leading her outside to their backyard. When a puppy won’t go down stairs we can easily build their confidence so we can teach them to go down stairs little by little. To see how I accomplished this, you can watch the video below.

As you can see in the video Ginger was slowly building her confidence, but what you couldn’t see in this video is that Ginger successfully went down the entire flight of stairs on her own later during the session! This was a huge success for her and will make potty training her so much easier. One training tip for helping a dog that won’t go down stairs is to give a treat to the other dog that is at the bottom of the stairs to create an incentive for your puppy that is fearful of the stairs.

To keep up with the dogs’ good behavior I want to remind the guardians to use our Petting with a Purpose technique to reward the dogs’ for their good and calm behavior. You also want to make sure that you are enforcing the rules that we discussed such as having the dogs sit before going outside for walks and using our structured eating technique. We wrapped up this puppy behavior session with Ginger and Clyde’s Roadmap to Success video, which you can watch below.

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This post was written by: Sam Kanouse

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