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Discussion Starter #1
I am sure this has been covered before, but I sure could use some help now. How the heck do I keep my 55lbs male V from surfing the kitchen counters as soon as he has an opening? Pencils, paper towels, food (I know the answer to that one), paper, pens, etc. We do our best to keep things off the counter, but I have two elementary kids who forget.....along with a couple of parents. He is pretty sneaky, he always makes sure no one is around before he attacks the kitchen. Are there any tips or tricks, besides having nothing on the counter tops, that will curb his appetite for the granite.

KW
 

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KW,

I feel your pain!! I have a 3 yr old 60# male foster dog right now, and he is making me crazy with always jumping on the counters. The only way that I have been able to keep him down is to have him on leash all of the time so I keep him out of the kitchen.

Good luck!!
 

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I'm right there with you in Mammahood!! Our Pumpkin does not go for the granite every chance she gets, but I have caught her traversing the kitchen table a few times :eek: I can be worse than my 3 kids about forgetting (my 3 y/o finds the antics hilarious), but I have concluded that, once again, prevention is the best medicine. If I catch Pumpkin in the act, I give a very stern "no" & time -out. I have also had some practice sessions with leaving very tempting items out, sneak around the corner, and then move in for correction if she takes the bait; however, for us, remembering to not leave interesting items out seems to be the best route. Sorry I have no great solutions, but I empathize :)
 

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Try using a water bottle and spraying him every time he jumps on the counter or table. This has helped curb our V from counter surfing. He's not perfect, but much better than 3 mo ago.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I have a hard time catching him in the act. I usually hear a crunching sound and go investigate. Then I will find him with a pen or pencil or paper or paper towel or whatever. One time he followed me upstairs and as soon as I closed the bathroom door I heard him bolt. By the time I got downstairs he had cleaned off the counters of whatever was on them. He knows it is not a game because he flips on his back and has a "my bad" look on his face....(see my other post about scared and peeing) I have gotten better with him not peeing, but I have to go slow and not look or sound upset. Which is hard to do when he has just chewed up something of importance.....I know I need to keep everything off of the counters, but having two kids is sometimes tough.

KW
 

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KW,

Perhaps you could find some way of making counter surfing a negative experience. For example, take a pencil (or any other item he finds irresistible) and tie it with some string to the trigger mechanism on an old fashion mouse trap, then set the trap. When he takes the pencil, he'll set off the trap with a loud snap. It might startle him and make the him think twice before doing it again. Repeat as necessary.

Just a thought.

Bruce
 

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We are having a difficult time with Holley with this issue as well. SHe has learned everything else that we wanted her to with house manners but will not stop jumping up on the counters if Dan or I are in the kitchen. We do not leave anything out for her to get but she just loves to see what we are doing up there and it is not a good thing. Any advice would be very helpful. I guess we could try the water bottle for this as well since it has worked in the past with other things.
 

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If it is really important to correct this behavior I suggest the following.

Go to the store and buy one of those aerosol horns. You know the spray cans that have a small horn on the top and when you push the button, sound like a fog horn or truck horn! Then set him up. Put something really interesting on the counter and then leave the room. Maybe even have an accomplice hide in the next room and peek through a window or doorway. Then, when the paws hit the counter sound the horn!! I would sound it for 10-15 seconds. I'll bet that after a couple of these experiences, the counter surfing will end. ;D You could always use a shock collar in a similar fashion.
 

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Maggie is an AWFUL counter surfer and we were concerned about what she might get into...we tried "pennies in a jar", followed by the water bottle, and then to the shock collar as a last resort. I can tell you this...she certainly knows that she is not supposed to be on the counter--however, she is an incredibly smart dog...so if she thinks you can't see/hear her, she'll still try. and if it's something that she REALLY wants, her stubborn-ness takes over and she'll go get it regardless (like bacon, for example, apparently worth the shock!).

the shock collar really did work--it's probably 90% better--which is great. remember, if the dog has a vocal reaction (yelp) to the shock, it is TOO high...it should be an unpleasant feeling for them, but it shouldn't hurt them. also, the collar should be used in conjunction with a command (we went with a simple "no"). it probably took about a month or so for it to sink in that every time she was told "no" she got shocked, and she was told "no" every time she got on the counter...at this point a simple "no" will correct her, we rarely need the collar.
 

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Cute video, but I have a hard time believing it. If Penny jumped up and saw/smelled a muffin mere millimeters from her nose, there would be no gentle licking and contemplation. It would be stolen and gulped down as quickly as possible before people arrived.

Countersurfing is one habit we have just not been able to break and she is almost 3 years. The problem is she has occasionally been rewarded for the behavior when she finds something, even if we try to leave everything clear--including the sink and dishes. Pennies in a can were slightly effective. I created "traps" by tying bunches of aluminum cans to bait but she only learned to pause for a slight second and look for cans. Tried bad tasting spray stuff. Leaving jalapeno peppers out. Lots of things that don't phase her. The water bottle is our most effective technique, and we "invested" in a large one that can shoot from another room. But as noted, she has learned that she is not supposed to. And she will get down when sprayed. But she knows that if we are not in sight, she won't be sprayed.

The worst part is that Penny needed surgery in December after swallowing something during a counter surfing incident. (See a separate post about that.) But of course, while traumatic, she does not connect the two together so it was not a lesson against surfing, or stealing, or chewing/eating things that aren't hers.

So my lesson and advice is for those of you with puppies, tackle this problem right away as it is not just annoying but potentially dangerous.
 

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Recently our mix was climbing up on our sofa and clawing at the blinds of the window above it so she could see the neighbor's feral cats.

We bought this: "SSSCAT Spray for Cats" - you can get it through Foster and Smith.

It is just air, with a motion sensor. After 2 times, I didn't even need to turn it on! As long as she saw on the window sill, she wouldn't go up. It might work for counter surfing too.
 

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jp said:
Cute video, but I have a hard time believing it. If Penny jumped up and saw/smelled a muffin mere millimeters from her nose, there would be no gentle licking and contemplation. It would be stolen and gulped down as quickly as possible before people arrived.

Countersurfing is one habit we have just not been able to break and she is almost 3 years. The problem is she has occasionally been rewarded for the behavior when she finds something, even if we try to leave everything clear--including the sink and dishes. Pennies in a can were slightly effective. I created "traps" by tying bunches of aluminum cans to bait but she only learned to pause for a slight second and look for cans. Tried bad tasting spray stuff. Leaving jalapeno peppers out. Lots of things that don't phase her. The water bottle is our most effective technique, and we "invested" in a large one that can shoot from another room. But as noted, she has learned that she is not supposed to. And she will get down when sprayed. But she knows that if we are not in sight, she won't be sprayed.

The worst part is that Penny needed surgery in December after swallowing something during a counter surfing incident. (See a separate post about that.) But of course, while traumatic, she does not connect the two together so it was not a lesson against surfing, or stealing, or chewing/eating things that aren't hers.

So my lesson and advice is for those of you with puppies, tackle this problem right away as it is not just annoying but potentially dangerous.
I am having the exact same problems. I am thinking of trying the air horn, but it seems nothing will phase her. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Here is what I did, and it seems to have cured the counter surfing problem. It's a bit advanced though, and requires an e-collar:

1) set a trap - a piece of turkey on the counter
2) leave my laptop with webcam running on the other side of the kitchen
3) stream webcam and view from another computer... simplest way seemed to be to make a chat on tinychat. In this case I used tinychat.com/damndog ;D
4) wait for it....
5) as soon as he puts his paws on the counter, hit the button.

It took about 3 minutes for him to leave the room (since he follows me upstairs) and go explore the kitchen on his own (which is downstairs). It probably took 10 minutes for him to actually commit to going for the bait, he even did a lot of sniffing and a half jump beforehand. He knew it was wrong, but did not fear any consequences since I was upstairs.

Since he KNOWS that he's not supposed to do it but has defied me anyways, I made sure the sensitivity on the collar was turned up so he would remember the incident. I don't like to use the collar in this way and rarely have to, but I know that he knows better, he just tries to get away with it. Since I was upstairs when he was shocked I think he realized he can't get away with it just when I'm not looking. I did this about two weeks ago and have had no problems since.
 

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The house I had in Louisville I put in a invisible fence covering about an acre-I thought PIKE was over counter surfing untill I realized the loop was just outside the the kitchen-PIKE never got near the counters-now in Danville and he's back to his old habits-LOL
 

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Odin likes to sniff up on the counter and sometimes gets a taste of things. We've been sticking with a solid "NO" or a preemptive "OOOODDDIIIIINNNN" if we're in the room.

Just this weekend he got feet up on the kitchen table and got a really good slurp of a guests whiskey. Surprisingly he didn't hate it... I guess he's following after dad... 8)

My aunt is a vet tech and she suggested using double sided tape on the edge of the counter. Usually it's a method used for cats but she said it was worth a shot. We haven't tried it but if you're at your whits end it might be worth a shot. No promises on results though.
 

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Ozkar and Zsa Zsa were always fine, but little Astro has been a challenge. I still have to watch him. He won't jump up now, but he is sooo bog now, all he has to do is crane his neck and he can get to stuff on the edge of the counter. But, he has been pretty good of late and I even left a tasty bone on the bench to test him and he just sat there looking at it. :) So he is learning.
 

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In addition to the double-sided tape, cats also hate the feeling of aluminum foil and wax paper under their paws. Not sure about paw preferences for a V. Bubble packing paper that pops when stepped on can also act as a deterrent. I didn’t have this issue with Savannah, just with my cat. It took a few weeks while she tried different jumping angles and different landing points on the counter, but eventually, it worked.
 

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Spray bottles and air horns. A couple times is all you'll need. :) This needs/should be coupled with the leave it command , which is practiced daily until obeyed. :)
 

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We used Pet Corrector Spray, which is essentially a can of air that you spray in the vicinity of your V (but not at them). They don't like the noise. This was recommended by someone else on this site. At first, I was very skeptical that this could possibly work, but I was willing to try anything at that point. Within two days, Dory was no longer counter surfing, and we haven't had a problem with counter surfing since. I highly recommend it!
 
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