The 9-weeks-old Corgi puppy in this video is learning to use the stairs. Going down. His name is Peanut Butter. Cute name for a dog! The height of the step is obviously too high for this short-legged puppy. Yet, he managed to go down one step.
How to teach a puppy to use the stairs
If you are trying to teach your puppy or a small dog to use the stairs, here are some tips from Jolanta Benal on Quick And Dirty Tips. Jolanta compares the fear of puppies learning the stairs to human toddlers learning the stairs. We have the advantage of holding on to the banister. And we have thumbs. Dogs only have their nails to hold on to carpets, if there are carpets. If you have slippery wooden stairs, put some kind of traction to help provide a positive experience for this learning process.
What to do if your puppy is afraid of stairs
Jolanta suggests that if your puppy is feeling anxious about this or other learning, giving them a sense of control can help in reducing their fear. Use treats for this learning process.
Start from the bottom of the staircase. Don’t push and don’t pull the puppy. It’s best if the puppy takes its own initiative. If not, partially helping the puppy land that first step and then rewarding for his success would encourage him. When he made it up the first step, just let him hang out there and feel comfortable. When he looks ready, then use treats to lure him down the step.
What if the stairs are too steep for your puppy?
If the step is too steep for him, then start with a book. A sturdy book, and put some kind of traction on it. A book is just an inch or two. So that should be easy success for the puppy. When he’s comfortable going up and down that book, add a third, then a fourth, until you are somewhat close to the height of the step. Then try the staircase again. When your puppy can comfortably go up and down 3 or 4 steps, most likely he is feeling at ease with stairs. You can read the details of this training here. Enjoy watching Peanut Butter learn to use the stairs.
Article source: Jolanta Benal on Quick And Dirty Tips