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As is my custom, when I find myself teaching clients a particular lesson over and over, I immortalize the lesson in writing. So, here goes ...
Pretty much every dog I train has some sort of behavior "problem." I enclose "problem" in quotation marks because that is what humans call it ... but that's rarely what it actually is. More accurately, the "problem" is just a simple dog behavior, such as chewing, barking, jumping up on people, nipping, whining, etc. Those are "problems" for us, but they are just ... what dogs do.
Humans need to feel connected to others, and we sometimes bond as deeply with our dogs as we do with those of our own species. However, the flavors of human-canine bonding can vary wildly. On one end of the spectrum are those who fall in love with dogs based on their looks, personality or intelligence. On the other end are those who become attached to dogs in order to fill the holes left by emotional wounds. There probably are as many variations of this bond as there are dog owners, and any variation can be unhealthy if proper consideration is not given to providing for the dogs' needs. So, what do dogs need from us?
Few things are as annoying as a dog that jumps up on people to greet them. Not only is he likely to scratch your visitors or muddy their clothes, but he also could cause them to stumble and fall (especially if you have a larger dog and smaller guests). Another concern: dogs seem to be naturally great shots with their paws (as it pertains to human, male anatomy), if you get my drift.
Below are several suggestions to help you train your dog to stop jumping up on people:
Does your dog constantly jump on you? Is he rambunctious in the house? Does he plow over the kids? Does he stubbornly mouth you when he wants you to play with him? Does it seem he can scarcely contain himself? Below are a few guidelines on teaching your overly-excited dog to calm down.
In this five part series, I am discussing some well-intentioned but serious mistakes dog owners commonly make that actually cause behavior problems in their pets. I'm also suggesting some tips that will improve your dog's confidence, obedience and overall wellbeing.
This article covers: