Friday, February 26, 2016

Chewy vs. Stairs

Stairs were always a challenge for Chewy. They seemed like such a daunting obstacle when he was a wee pup.

I am not sure about this...
One time, he ventured up a couple of steps and then slipped on the way down, which further solidified his distrust of stairs (especially wooden ones). Another time, he managed to get up one step, and just froze there, with his little hind puppy paws clinging to the edge of the bottom step. He had to be rescued.


Eventually, he learned to go up and down staircases outside, which are usually rough and weathered, and not slippery. Sometimes if there was something exciting at the other end of the steps, he would make it halfway before remembering that he was scared of stairs, and then it would take a lot of coaxing and treats to get him to keep going.

But indoors, he would NOT try the stairs. If you took the stairs, he would just wait there for you to come back. When other dogs visited our house, they all pitter-pattered up and down, while Chewy just stayed there.

Hello, up there!
One time, we stayed in a cabin with carpeted stairs, and Chewy happily went up and down at his leisure.

So, we decided to install stair treads in our house, and Chewy's life has been totally changed! Whereas before he needed a human to bring him up or down, now he can do whatever he pleases! Sometimes when he is super excited, he even hops up 2 steps at a time.

Going down...

He also feels confident enough to play with his toys on the steps. And if his toy falls down, he can rescue it himself!

A few days ago, he finally realized he could walk up uncovered wooden stairs, too. Better late than never, right? Going down them is definitely still a no-go, though. 

Some stairways are still too scary, like those with no railings/walls or those with really tall steps.

I'll just stay here...
Maybe one day he'll really master stairs. But for now, we'll just take it one step at a time ;)

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