Photo by J. Nichole Smith | www.mylittleandlarge.com

Most dogs jump on people because they are excited and it is an effective means of getting attention, but some dogs jump because they feel uneasy when someone new comes through the door, and jumping is an effective way to cope with that discomfort.

Regardless, it is an unacceptable behavior for any dog, and, luckily, one that can be prevented and managed using positive training techniques.

How Do I Stop My Dog From Jumping Up?
The best way to stop your dog from jumping is to ignore her while she is in the act of jumping.

  • Each time she jumps up at you, turn your back.
  • Do not look at, talk to, or touch her at any time and fold your arms in front of you so that you become boring.
  • When she stops jumping, wait for three seconds of four paws on the floor and reward the self-control with your attention.
  • If she jumps again, repeat the exercise.
  • Practice this with friends and family members for consistency.

Problem:  When I try ignoring my dog’s jumping, it gets worse!

Solution:  This is known as an 'extinction burst.' The behavior that previously got your attention is no longer working for the dog, so she will try even harder to get what she desires for awhile before finally giving up. Persevere with the technique and take solace in the knowledge that it is working, because she will eventually give up.

Problem:  My dog only jumps on guests and I am having a hard time stopping the behavior when they come over.

Solution:  Manage your environment by putting your dog in another room or keeping her behind a baby gate until she is calm. Then walk her up to your guests on leash and teach her to sit in front of them instead of jumping on them.  When she is good at greeting appropriately on leash try the same technique off leash.

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