Jumping up

Jumping up; almost everyone with a dog has dealt with it or is dealing with it. It is a very common behavior for dogs; dogs greet in your face. When I take my girls out for a walk and we return; it is a very in your face greeting that they receive from Luke. Unfortunately our face is up high; so dog's feel that they need to jump up in our face to greet us. They are not being bad or showing disrespect; they are simply greeting us in the only way that they know how. It is up to us to show them alternative ways to greet us. And if you have an very excitable type pooch then you may have more work cut out for you.

The old caveman way of stopping a dog from jumping was to knee them in the chest. Another option was the step on their toes method or knock them to the ground. First off violence is not the answer and secondly what horrible things to do to your dog when they are simply wanting to greet us. You really have to take the "bad dog" out of an exuberant greeting. So just how do you teach a dog to stop jumping up to greet you?

The method I like the most is the "four on the floor" routine. Small steps are the key to success once again. You cannot take a dog that is accustom to propelling itself airborne and expect it to simply stop cold turkey. So you start by asking for four feet on the floor and rewarding it. Treat delivery should be via the floor and it may take a while for your dog to realize that there are treats being dropped onto the floor. I like to use good ole cheerios or Charlee Bear Treats which make a nice clicking sound when they land. Often a sudden light bulb goes off in your dog "oh the place to be is here on the ground where the treats are." Keeping your hand behind you; try to drop so that the treats seem to appear simply by achieving four on the floor.

Along with this method you should also ignore jumping. That said; if you have a 140lb airborne hound, ignoring is not always easy. For these guys I find that teaching a "place" exercise really helps. Teaching a dog to go to a certain spot; bed or carpet when told and being rewarded for it can make the difference. Once your dog gets the whole "four on the floor" the rest is up to you.

The biggest problem with jumping dogs is the humans that they are greeting. "Oh Fido; ooooh look how cute you are, we missed you poochie." All this while hugging and kissing and over stimulating your dog. You can really help your dog in the jumping department by calmly greeting; or waiting to greet until your dog calms. Often when I get home the dogs are wound tightly; everyone is panting and circling in a frenzy, not good. So I will walk in the door and past the crazed hounds into the kitchen and outside. I make like I have some serious puddering to do in the yard and will only greet once everyone settles.

Humans think that the problem is within a jumping dog; and yet the problem lies in ourselves. Both fueling and teaching are on us. Teach your dog how you would like them to greet you and you'll both be happy.


  1. I can do this, but my company just wants that hug! Just COMPLETELY IGNORE THE DOG!!

  2. Okay; now for the humans who don't listen? Knee them in the chest and throw them to the ground. Just kidding ;)

  3. We must protect the dog,because the dog are friends that we trusted the most.
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