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Stop dog jumping

If you have ever owned a dog, one time or another you have probably dealt with this problem. Your dog is so happy to see you that he jumps up on you getting his muddy paws all over your new suit or dress. Or even worse, during his excitement he jumps on a smaller child and knocks them down or scratches the child’s face, arms or legs.

Sorry to say this, but you probably taught him to greet you in this manner.

Many unknowing dog owners encourage this behavior early in a puppies life. It’s hard to resist a cute little puppy who is happy to see you. He comes running to meet you, leaps at your knees and what do we you? We reach down and pet or even pitch up the happy puppy and in effect, reword his behavior of jumping on us.

You have just taught your puppy a very nice lesson, if he runs up to you and jumps on your foot or knee he can get praise and affection. Fast foreword a few months and now that little puppy is as much as 5 or 6 times the size that he was, but still thinking like a puppy, (“if I jump on my owner he will give me love”). He does not know the difference between his puppy size, of say 4 or 5lbs and his new size of maybe 30 or 40lbs or more, not to mention he is taller now and can reach up to your arms or chest. All he knows is that he wants the praise and affection that he has missed all day long and you taught him how to get it, by jumping.

It’s Bad form to have a jumping dog.

You have to make it perfectly clear that jumping is unacceptable. Although owners of small breed dogs or “toy” dog breeds may expect their dog to jump, (this is totally up to you) but jumping on an unsuspecting guest could get things off on the wrong foot. That is why, if you do allow your dog to jump, you should at least work the command “off” into it’s training.

For larger breed dog owners, training your dog commands such as “No Jump” and “off” should be mandatory. If not for the social aspect, at least for the safety of little ones in the house or that come to visit. Remember, a large dogs paws can easily be heavy enough to gouge your skin though your cloths, and it’s one thing to put up with bruises, cuts and scrapes from your own dog, could you imagine if your dog did this to someone else, maybe a child. Yes, it is best that you either never teach your dog to jump or get this habit under control quickly.

Generally, there are two reasons why dogs jump.

The number one reason dogs jump is most likely out of pure excitement after a long separation (returning home from work) or during playtime when adrenaline is running high.

A much more complicated and serious reason dogs jump, is to display his dominance over you. Centuries of the pack mentality are still evident in all dogs and if there is doubt in who is alpha in your dogs pack (your family) he may try to exert his dominance over you. One of the behaviors dogs use to show physical superiority is to place one or both paws over a lesser animals shoulders.

That’s all well and good, but why is my dog jumping on me and how do I stop this behavior? First off, lets determine which type of jumping problem we are dealing with. This is pretty simple: If your dog jumps on you or anyone else out side of an excited welcome or high energy playtime, your dog is trying to dominate you or the person that he is jumping on. This will have to be dealt with in a much different way and you should bone up on your alpha dog techniques. (Tip: Secrets to dog training has a great course on dog behavior problems, you can find the link at the bottom of this page.)

How to stop the over excited greeting.

Your actions are key to eliminating this annoying and possibly dangerous habit of your dogs. As with most all dog training consistency in your training will speed up his learning curve and prove to be more reliable. To stop dog jumping you have to make it clear to your dog that jumping is no longer tolerated.

This means sticking to your training plan every day until there is not longer a problem. Your dog will not stop jumping on you if you allow it one day and not the next or allow him to jump on you but not your children. If you send this message to your dog he will jump when ever he feels like it.

This means that you must fallow your stop jumping techniques always. You can’t expect your dog to understand the difference between playtime and greeting, nice cloths and play cloths, rainy days or sunny days. If you let your dog jump at anytime, he will feel free to jump whenever he feels like it.

Here is the best way to stop dog jumping.

Let your body do all the talking. When your dog jumps on you or is about to jump on you, turn your back and face way from him…i.e. the cold shoulder. Dogs understand your body language much more then the spoken word, so use your posture to get the message though loud and clear.

When your dog goes to jump on you, turn your back on him right away. Dogs understand body language much more than the spoken word. So, what you need to do here is use your posture to get your message though loud and clear.

Again, as soon as he has all four paws back on the ground praise him lavishly. Don’t worry that you may be confusing him, dogs have a very short “training memory” and they can only comprehend the reaction you give to his behavior at that moment.

Continue this cycle and you will notice that he will clam down rather quickly.


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