Jumping up solutions
Step One: Understand the problem
Dogs jump up due to their drives, their energy, their need for companionship, their lack of training or their like/ dislike of people. Understand why your dog jumps up and it will be easier to put a solution in place to prevent this unwanted behaviour.
Step Two: Work on your dog
So your dog has learned to jump up. Now it must learn how to do some other behaviour. This takes time and patience and may require you to change your behaviour. Be ready to change and be ready to work.
You may need to alert those around you too. Your family members may all need to adopt the new approach. And when you friend call around, they too must be willing to accept that everyone is changing their behaviour. Your focus will be on your dog during the training phase, not on your guests.
Step Three: Short-term management
It is important to manage the excitable dog. Even if you don't mind your dog jumping on you, not everyone loves your dog like you do. Control your dog's movements with a lead or put them in another room or outdoors if you have to focus on guests.
Ignore the behaviour when it happens
Ignoring unwanted behaviour can be difficult and should never be done if your dog is a danger to anyone. If the behaviour is simply annoying it can help to ignore it. So...
1. When your dog starts to jump up, immediately turn your back on them, fold your arms and do not make any eye contact. Do not push them away, or talk to them. These are all forms of attention and will reward the undesirable behaviour.
2. When yoiur dog calms down, praise or pat them. This will teach them that quiet behaviour brings rewards.
Practice this when you have time. Arriving home from work or when guests are at your door are not good times to start. Begin when you have time and patience and remember that all family members need to be consistent in this behaviour.
Many owners make the mistake of inadvertently rewarding this behaviour by attention. For instance they may:
All of these are forms of attention and will keep your dog coming back for more.
Some specific problems solved...
Excitable with guests
There are two main ways you can approach this issue:
1. With management
Have your guests call you prior to their arrival. Put your dog on a lead before you answer the door. Control your dog's movements.
If this is too difficult to manage, put your dog in another location until your guests are settled, then fetch your dog on a lead and introduce them to your guests.
2. With training
Train your dog to behave well around visitors. Starting with your own family members, get one of them to out and come to the door. Place your dog on a lead and teach them how you would like to greet the 'visitor'. When your dog has mastered this, try the same approach with friends. Then you can move on to strangers.
If this is too difficult, then you may need to undertake more training with your dog or call a dog training in to help you.
Jumping on furniture
If your dog jumps up on your furniture and you object to this, teach them that it is more rewarding to stay off.
Do this by:
If your dog jumps on the furniture and you don't mind, then there is no need to stop this. It would be best if our dog jumped on on your invitation (command) so practice giving the command and rewarding your dog with a pat or a "Good dog" when they obey.
Remember... It's not wrong to be excitable...
The energy just needs to be directed on to appropriate outlets. If your dog is extremely energetic, try a dog sport such as flyball, agility, dock diving or herding. In addition, consider mental exercise as well as physical. Give your dog puzzle toys or food-releasing toys to work on.