What’s more satisfying than coming home to an excited greeting from your dog? It’s like a one dog parade just for you! It can make even the worst day seem ok. But should you stop your dog from jumping up on you and is this seemingly harmless behavior something dog owners should allow their dogs to do?
Yes, it’s really cute when your tiny puppy jumps up to greet you at every opportunity. But now that “puppy” is 70 pounds and grandma is coming over to visit … what seemed like a great idea when the puppy was small could now pose a real physical danger to an elderly guest.
Why Should I Stop My Dog From Jump?
- Overexcited, jumping dogs can hurt those who are frail, small children and elderly people.
- Jumping is not a proper greeting; it is an attempt to control another’s intimate space.
- Jumping is also an attention-seeking behavior. Attention and affection should be given on your terms, not those dictated by your dog.
While it might seem like a herculean task to stop your dog’s jumping, with patience, consistency and the tips below, you will be able to create a well-mannered and calm dog regardless of who comes over.
Involve All Family Members
Teaching your dog to be calm during someone’s arrival must involve the entire family. Consistency is critical is helping your dog understand exactly what you want … no more jumping.
First, start with yourself and the family members living in the home. Stop making a huge deal out of arrivals and departures! This only encourages the dog to become overexcited which leads to excited jumping. When you come home, if your dog jumps on you then ignore him until he calms down. Once they are calm, give them attention. This simple step will go far in your goal of stopping your dog’s jumping!
Stop Your Dog From Jumping With These 4 Tips
Below is an exercise from the Labrador Training HQ website for stopping your dog from jumping:
- Recruit a friend your dog absolutely loves.
- Harness your dog and keep them far enough back from the door so he can’t jump on your friend.
- Have your friend enter. The second your dog goes to jump and their paws leave the floor, have your friend turn around and leave, without a sound. Ask your dog to “sit.”
- Repeat. Each time your dog goes to jump, have your friend leave, ask the dog to “sit” and repeat. Dogs are typically fast learners and usually around 5 repetitions (it may take more, don’t get discouraged), the dog will start to understand and sit politely. Have your friend reward the dog by petting the dog (use treats sparingly).
Just like humans don’t all learn the same way, you may need to find/use another exercise to help your dog learn this new behavior. Remember, what your dog really wants is attention, from you or the new guest. When the guest suddenly leaves in response to bad behavior (jumping), the dog begins to learn his current behavior is not getting him what he wants.
Avoid yelling or “explaining” to your dog what you want … to the dog, your conversation is actually the attention he seeks (just like a child) and so by talking, you’re reinforcing his bad behavior instead!