How Do I Get My Dog to Stop Jumping Up?
Jumping Up is an Issue For Many Dogs and Dog Owners!
The problem is that dogs aren’t born understanding what irritates us humans!
Dogs interact with each other by jumping up, flying around, and playing.
When they are excited, they get in each other’s faces.
When they are nervous or being submissive, they get in each other’s faces.
When they are dominant or aggressive, they get in each other’s faces.
Interestingly, our faces are on our necks, up high in the air.
In order for a dog to interact with you, he thinks he needs to get up close to your face.
He doesn’t realize this is wrong, by human social norms, so please be kind while you are teaching him.
Did You Know?
Losing your patience makes him even more likely to jump.
Did You Know?
Kneeing or kicking him makes him even more likely to jump, because it makes him more submissive and concerned for you.
Unless you do it SO HARD it hurts him, or knocks the wind out of him.
And that is just sad! Don’t do it!
Did You Know?
Ignoring him is not likely to work to stop your dog from jumping up.
Jumping up is a self-rewarding behavior; so ignoring him is not likely to stop him.
Also, turning your body away from him is not likely to work… I am not sure where that piece of training advice got started.
Most dogs will simply follow you around and jump on you at another angle.
Again, jumping up is a self rewarding behavior; it feels good to him to get up close and in your space.
Lack of Impulse Control
So, yes, we have established that your dog wants to be with you, near you, by you, and on you, but he is certainly capable of learning to control his impulses.
He shouldn’t be able to do whatever he wants because it feels good.
We all have to learn to control our impulses to live within society.
Babies and toddlers are taught when they are young to keep their hands to themselves and not to steal things or take things that aren’t theirs.
Your dog also needs to be taught to control his impulses.
And, ironically, as you teach him some basic impulse control, you will begin to see him respect you and your space more often.
The Other Go-To?
The other big go-to when I am working with dogs that jump is teaching them an incompatible behavior.
My dog cannot lie down and jump on me at the same time.
He also cannot lie down and jump on my kids, or other people that he is greeting.
Some people choose “sit” over “down”, because it is easier to get an excited dog to sit.
However, I think it is easier to go from a “sit” to a springing jump, than it is to go from a “down” to a springing jump.
When I trained Service Dogs for people with disabilities, “down” was our go-to behavior for greeting.
Dogs are much calmer when they are in a down position.
And, a calm dog is much less likely to jump.
It takes work!
You will have to work with your dog when he is excited and get him to lie down on command.
In just a few training sessions, you will have a handle on this behavior.
And, it will be worth all of your hard effort!