How do you teach a dog not to play with his toys on the couch?

Captain is allowed on the furniture. No real going back on that one. So he found his Kong again, and we don’t want him to play with it on the furniture 'cause it’s gross. We throw it down when he gets up with it, but he thinks that’s a new game. Is there a way for him to learn that the Kong does not go on the couch?

Ooh, that’s a tough one. I don’t think many dogs have the reasoning abilities to puzzle out that they’re allowed to have their toys, and they’re allowed to be on the couch, but they’re not allowed to be on the couch with their toys.

Speaking only as a dog owner and occasional watcher of dog-training shows, I’d guess your best bet is to only let him on the couch when you’ve invited him up. If he just jumps up, push him off and make him sit-stay. As part of the invitation process, you can make him drop whatever he has. If he feels less entitled and more like he’s getting a treat by getting to come up there, he’s less likely to push it.

I agree with Giraffe about the reasoning abilities of dogs- I think you’ll just have to teach him to stay off the couch .

We like him on the couch. We actually had to pick a certain couch at Ikea because my favorite room wouldn’t have had room for us and the dog. Training him to only come up by invitation is a possibility but it would be difficult to get the boyfriend on board.

Maybe teach him to leave it or drop it when he gets on the couch? My puppy has quite a few toys and sometimes he wants to bring them outdoors. I discourage it because he leaves them out and the snow covers them, they will get found by the lawnmower next spring, etc.

When he stands by the door with a toy in his mouth I use the drop it command first, before opening the door. Sometimes he is sneaky and will drop it but try to quickly pick it back up again when I open the door so I use the leave it command then.

I would disagree that the dog can’t learn he’s not allowed toys on the couch. A sharp ‘No!’ and moving (not throwing for him to chase) the toy to the floor, rinse and repeat for as long as it takes.

We had this issue with Sadie – we like having her on the couch for snuggling purposes (she’s so warm!) but not when she’s got a stinky slimy chew toy. We ended up putting a washable throw blanket on the couch.

I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the smarter breeds could figure it out. The two hairy mental defectives I live with? Not in a million years.

I agree. A dog can learn. It takes patience, persistence and consistency.

I put blankets/towels/throw rugs/special coverings with paw-print markings sold at exorbitant prices in pet stores to yuppies with too much money - I put them on the furniture muttering “THIS is why we can’t have anything nice in this house.” Coverings can be removed to make the furniture look nice when company comes.

that is what I was going to suggest.

When he jumps up with a toy, take it from him, pop him on the nose and admonish him, and move it away(as the other poster said, don’t throw it). When he jumps up without his toy, praise him and pet him. Take the toy out of his mouth before you invite him up. He’ll figure it out. He learned not to shit there, didn’t he?

Our dog was a couch/bed dog for the first half of his life, then we got new furniture and we trained him to stay off everything. It took a couple of days, but you can train them to do so, even if they were prior couch/bed dogs.

This is exactly what I did/do with Stella. Not throwing it is the really important part. I actually placed it on the floor; even dropping it was too game-like.

And dogs can learn rather complex rules. Stella is allowed on the furniture, but no toys are allowed on the bed and no rawhides are allowed on the couch (other toys are okay). She still pushes it, but all it takes now is a snap of my fingers and she gets down with the toy. Sometimes she returns without it, sometimes not. Depends on which is most important at the moment: toy or couch.

I just avoid kongs for this reason. I don’t want peanut butter all over my house.

Our dog knows she’s not allowed to lick her butt on the couch or bed. We just told her to get down every time she started to do so, and after a little while she just started to get down on her own before…grooming herself. I bet he’ll catch on pretty quickly.

Oh, this is the little biscuit that fits inside it. Very economical, since he’s had it for close to a year now and has never gotten that first biscuit out!