It can get annoying having a dog jump all over you, no matter how much we love them. Imagine your friend is dressed up to go out and comes around for a quick visit. The next thing you know the dog is jumping up pawing at her, leaving dog hair on her beautiful outfit and slobber marks on her makeup! Even the biggest dog lover in the world will be less than impressed with that behaviour.
I realise the damage is less if we’re talking about a tiny little dog, but even so, it’s safer to teach him to keep all four paws on the ground. A small dog can still hurt a child or cause an elderly person to lose his or her balance and get hurt.
Here are the 3 easy steps
When your dog is jumping…
- Fold your arms across your chest and avoid eye contact until he gets down
- Gently nudge him off you and say “down” Or simply turn around and say and do nothing
- When he has all 4 paws on the ground for at least a couple of seconds, reward him with a favourite treat
Why do dogs jump on humans?
Most dogs jump because they’re excited to see someone…anyone.
Great way to get attention – they jump and you respond by acknowledging them or petting them
Anxious when someone new comes in the house – your dog’s way of dealing with that discomfort
How to stop your dog jumping on people – 3 easy steps
When she is jumping…
Fold your arms across your chest and avoid eye contact until he gets down
Gently nudge him off you and say “down” Or simply turn around and say and do nothing
When he has all 4 paws on the ground for at least a couple of seconds, reward him with a favourite treat
It’s important that everyone who lives in the house gets on board and practices these 3 steps. The process is so simple, it’s the consistency and sticking with it most people find difficult.
The jumping may get worse before it gets better!
Until now, whenever your dog jumped up he got the attention he was after. Now that you’ve decided to do something about that behaviour and he’s not getting the result he’s used to, he’s going to try even harder. I can imagine how annoying that is, and how badly you want it to stop, to the point where you’re about to give in. Don’t!!
If you stick to the plan and persevere, she will, eventually, get the message.
Your dog is leaving you alone, but not your guests
You’ve done great! Your dog has learned to leave you and other household members alone, but he’s still jumping all over your guests. Now what! No one wants their guests to feel uncomfortable, but if the jumping continues you may have far less company than you used to.
Jumping because he’s excited to see company
If your dog loves having people over, and loves to show your guests how much, you’ll need to redirect that energy and have him focus on doing something else. How about teaching him to go on his bed when someone comes to the door? Once he’s calm he’s allowed to greet your guests.
How to teach your dog to go on his bed.
This is a great command for your dog to know, so let’s get started. As with all training, be sure to have a treat pouch and treats handy.
Choose a word you’re going to use whenever you want him to go on his bed. One word is best so something as simple as “bed” will do. Stand next to the bed and hold a treat out for him to attract him over. Once all 4 paws are on the bed say “bed” and give him a treat. He will learn the association between the word and the reward, and that good things happen when he hears it. Practicing over the course of a day or two should be long enough, but if he needs a few more sessions than that’s fine too. Remember to give him a treat every time he gets on the bed.
In order to get him to stay, it’s time teach him “down.” When your dog has all 4 paws on the bed, try and lure him into a lying down position by lowering your hand with the treat towards the bed. That is a great way to get him into the position you want, and give him a treat when he does it. Again, practice several times throughout the day and for as many days as you need to until he gets it.
At this point you should be able to say “bed” and “down” he should do it automatically. You can still give him a treat the odd time at the beginning if you like to keep him motivated. but after that it won’t be necessary.
Jumping due to lack of confidence around strangers
Your dog may not have had much, or any socialisation training in his previous home, so isn’t comfortable among strangers. We must do what we can to ensure our dogs feel safe in their own home. In this instance it might be best to put your dog in another room, or at least put up a baby gate so he can still see what’s going on but be far enough away so he’s not stressed.
Once every one has settled down and things are calmer, why not bring your dog out on a leash to say hello. Don’t drag him over to each person, let him approach on his own. Depending on how he’s doing you can let him stay with everyone, but on his bed, or if he seems anxious take him back to the room, or put him on the other side of the gate. If you practice this whenever you have company he will get used to having visitors in the house and be more relaxed.
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