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|Posted on February 8, 2016 at 12:08 PM|
Does your dog(s) get a lil jump happy when someone new comes over? Are you afraid that your precious pups might inadvertently knock someone over?
This is something that can be easily remedied through patience and training.
Why do dogs jump up on people?
Your dog more than likely isn't trying to hurt anyone, they are just super excited at this newcomer and all the smells they brings along with them! They may get amazing head scratchies from this person and maybe even a belly rub if they act super duper friendly!
This is how many dogs think but there are other things that dogs sometimes think when someone comes over..."Should I be protective right now? I'm so nervous!"
These types of feelings can also lead to jumping from dogs because they are filled up to the brim with nervous energy and this is how they can get it out.
Pack mentality is a thing. Have you ever noticed that your super laid back dog will all go all jump happy when someone comes over - if they see their best fur bud in the whole world doing it, then they are most likely to follow suit,
How can we adjust this type of behavior?
-If you have highly active dogs and know someone will be coming over in the next hour you can try exercising your dogs prior to that person's arrival. The goal is to wear them out. You're going to want some calm down time in between exercising and the knock on the door. Maybe fifteen minutes or so.
-Make sure that when someone does knock on the door not to exacerbate the situation by getting your dogs excited...you'd be surprised how many people do this and then yell at their dogs when they start jumping all over the place and the person who just walked in. This means no, "Oh Pooky, I wonder who could be at the door??!!" Nothing like that.
-Treat all dogs the same. This is easier said than done. People who have little dogs AND big dogs typically let their littles get away with far more stuff that they tend to frown at if the big dogs try. Don't do that, it's confusing for the big dogs. This means that if you don't want 80lb Rufus jumping up all over people without permission, then you shouldn't allow 6lb Tinkerbelle to do it either.
-Remain calm when you answer the door and tell your guest beforehand to remain calm. Make your dog sit before introducing to your guest and wait until your dogs are calm. This may be awkward at first, having your guest wait outside the door. You may want to test this at first with a friend or neighbor that is okay with your dogs. When your dog sits in a calm fashion reward with tasty treats.
-Ignore the bad behavior and praise the good. This can be difficult at first but any attention when your dog is begging for attention is good to your dog. Let me explain, if your dog is jumping up on you and you are pushing him away - you are giving him what he wants: attention. If your dog is jumping up on you and you throw a treat or toy to distract him - you are giving him attention. If your dog is jumping up on you and you are giving him any contact whether verbal, eye contact or physical contact then guess what? You are giving him attention and that is exactly what he wants.
-When your dog is jumping up on you (or tell whoever he is jumping on) then you cross your arms and turn away. Don't look at him. Don't say anything. Remain calm. He will keep jumping for a little bit and you just keep on doing what you are doing which is ignoring him, Eventually he will sit down. When he sits all the way down and is calm then you can praise him but do so calmly. You will be surprised how quickly this works. Eventually your dog will come to realize that sitting and being calm will get him more attention than being obnoxious to you and your guest. A relaxed dog is a happy dog.
The bottom line is that you want to not reward bad behavior and you want to be patient enough to recognize good behavior when it happens and reward it accordingly.