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Should I Let My Dog…

Having a spotted an article on the Good Morning Britain facebook page (It’s not something I do regularly!) on the disgusted reactions of the audience when “Super Vet” Noel Fitzpatrick allowed a dog to lick him on the face. I decided to open this up further regarding an area that I often get asked about by clients.

Now we’re all dog people here and the likelihood is many of us let our dogs lick our face and some don’t – it really comes down to your own choice and neither choice is right or wrong. It’s up to us if we want to risk that hygiene element!

Regularly I’ll have clients I’m working with ask the following questions: Should I let my dog…

Get on the sofa?
Sleep on the bed?
Sit on my lap?
Eat at the same time as me?
Go through doorways first?

Each of those questions often has the same answer.

“If that’s what you want, then it’s cool.”

Your dog is a fairly simple creature (It’s what makes them so awesome at times, unlike us complicated Hairless Apes). Your dog will do what works for them, what makes them feel safe, warm, comfortable. If they want to sleep on any of your furniture it’s likely because…

It smells like you – Which will often comfort them
It’s comfy – Surprise surprise, the £1000 Sofa is more comfortable than the £20 Dog Bed!
Everyone else seems to be chilling up there!

Letting your dog sleep in these areas, on your bed or your lap will not have any adverse effects. The only time I would not recommend this is if your dog might be the type to guard a space and we need to manage the situation and train our pups OR if you’ve got Serial Farter (I’m looking at the Staffies!)

Feeding your dog whilst you eat is a great way to solve a dog that will try and mind control you with puppy eyes whilst your tucking in. Something like a Kong or a long lasting chew will keep them busy and out of the way whilst your filling your face. You don’t need to eat first to establish any boundaries, you’re just risking some serious dribble on your floor if the food smells TOO good!

If I’m ever training a dog around doorways it’ll always be for safety and self-control, not because I’m trying to establish some nonsense hierarchy where the dog thinks I’m in charge. Remember dogs have 4 legs, we have 2. The mathematics say they’re going to go through that door much quicker than us snails.

So what’s the takeaway from this…?
Do what works for you and your dog. If you like having a dog on the bed at night and your dog loves it too, go for it! Your dog will certainly love you for it, but they wont love you any less if they’ve got an awesome dog bed to sleep on elsewhere. There’s no right and wrong here it’s mostly down to preference and whether you like dog farts in your bed.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this and thoroughly encourage civil open-minded discussion!

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