Dogs greet each other, nose to nose and eye to eye. It's natural instinct for them to greet their human friends the same way. Since humans are taller, dogs will jump up to meet eye level. Pet parents enforcing proper greeting etiquette from their dogs will make their visitors enjoy a pleasant experience. A visitor's reaction, such as ignoring the jumping behavior, is beneficial during the training process.
Introducing acceptable greeting behavior between you and your dog is the first step. When entering your home, your dog will be excited and happy to see you; he may jump, bark and run around from the happiness he feels. Do not make a big deal out of your entrance; remain calm and quiet, ignoring your dog and his jumping behavior. You want to teach your dog that people entering your home, whether it is you or visitors, is not a main event. After your dog has calmed down, then acknowledge him.
The sit command is a beneficial tool to use when training your dog not to jump on visitors. When there is a knock at the door or the doorbell rings, train your dog to sit in a designated area away from the excitement. Once your guests have entered your home, give your dog a treat to reward him for his positive behavior. This technique may take some practice and patience to acquire. Have your family members assist you, take turns ringing the doorbell, greeting each other and enforcing the sit command. Always use the same designated area for your dog to sit. Eventually, every time there is a knock at the door, your dog will immediately run to his sit position in his designated area.
Ask your guests to participate in your training process by displaying certain behaviors towards your dog. Ask your guests to ignore your dog, avoid eye contact, touching and talking, and pretend your dog is not even in the room. If your dog continues to jump on them after they display this behavior, ask them to turn their bodies away from your dog, showing their backs to him. This technique shows your dog that his jumping is not acceptable behavior and it does not get him any attention. Once your guests have entered your home and walked away from the door, have your guests greet your dog calmly, even offering him a treat.
Most dogs have a large amount of energy and excitement about visitors bundled up inside of them. Keeping a few toys near the front door will allow your dog to chew the toy and run around with the toy to celebrate his happiness, rather than display his jumping behavior on his guests. Every time a guest comes to the door, give your dog a toy to express his emotions. This technique will have to be repeated frequently until your dog naturally grabs a toy every time a guest comes to the door.
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