Do you have a dog who isn’t super confident going up and downstairs? Or maybe they are happy to go up the stairs but they’re just not as confident coming down the stairs.
Here are a few pointers that may help.
Work out if the problem is the stairs, the floor surface or your dog’s mobility. Some dogs may be happy to walk up and down carpeted stairs but baulk at wooden, concrete or open metal stairs. If your dog appears to be struggling with mobility or in any discomfort consult your Vet immediately.
Some dogs are ok walking on a slippery surface but the moment they add speed their confidence diminishes. My tip to help – you need to give your dog something else to think about when they are moving at speed. The exercise to use here is a food chase. It’s super simple, toss some treats on the ground and your dog’s job is to move about and find them. Often with excitement, they will begin to move at speed across the surface they aren’t confident on.
Did you know that shiny surfaces can also take time to get used to? Practise a few more food chases on this surface as well.
Exposing your puppy or dog to a range of different surfaces in a range of different environments is vital and will build confidence. Have fun with it and reward your dog with a few good pats, a treat or a game of tug when they have successfully navigated the surface you are getting them accustomed to. Once you have done this then add the stairs and stand back and watch the improvement.