My Dog Keeps Jumping On People!

Dog keeps jumping on people

Lets Teach Your Dog How To Stop Jumping On People

“Fido doesn’t stop jumping.” or “I adopted this dog and he keeps jumping on people, what can I do?” We hear it all too often. Jumping against people is a behavior that can get annoying or even harmful. Imagine a big 80 lbs dog jumps against a small child or grandma/grandpa! They might not have the balance to stand up against your dog jumping on them.

It’s natural behavior for a dog wanting to jump up, to greet, get attention or from the excitement that their human walks through the door. In many cases this is friendly submissive behavior. Dogs figure out very quickly that jumping gets them attention. Both positive in the way of petting or a scratch on his head. As well as negatively, when you tell him down or push him away. Regardless of which you use, you just gave him attention and are “unintentionally” praising his behavior.

So How Do We Stop A Dog Jumping Up

It will only takes a few steps to make him stop. This eventually will turn into an automatic response. If you come home and your dog jumps up against you, do the following:

  • Cross your arms, stand up straight, and look straight ahead.
  • Turn your body 90 degrees left or right, away from your dog, when he jumps up.
  • Completely ignoring his behavior.

If the dog turns with you and jumps back up, you turn left or right again. Don’t look at him or acknowledge him by saying anything. Basically all you need to do is, every time he jumps, just turn around and pretend he is not there.

Keep repeating this process till the dog has all 4 paws on the ground. Proceed to praise him, tell him that he was a good boy, give him some pets, because he did what you wanted! If he jumps again, repeat the process from start to finish till he shows the correct response.

Make sure to praise your dog when he sits

The majority of the dogs will pick up on this relatively quickly, they will even start sitting instead. Sitting is a similar response many dog associate with a chance for them to get petted and the attention they are looking for.

However, you always have exceptions on the rule, the dogs that try to jump higher, faster or quicker. In such cases it is very important to be persistent and follow through till you get the correct result. Eventually as long as you’re consistent with your routine they will eventually give in, sit lay down or give you their big puppy-dog eyes to get attention. This is the result you are trying to achieve.

Eventually as this becomes easier on you and the dog you can teach him a specific command.  So he can associate it with staying on the ground. If he respond to the command, praise him! You can even take it a step further and teach him a command to jump. If you do want him to associate that he can stand up against you but only at times you tell him it is okay. This is no different than teaching a dog to come here, lay down or stay. It is all about being consistent and keeping the rules clear for your furry friend.

What To Do Around Strangers and Visitors When Your Dog Jumps Up On Them

The issue is, other people might be unaware that you are trying to break this behavior. Your neighbors on a morning walk, a random person walking by, or family or friends that come over for a visit. As the dog jumps up against them they will push or pet the dog. Even if you tell them you are trying to correct the training, because they think it’s cute or they just want the dog to move away. Unintentionally they might continue rewarding the behavior, and setting your dog back in it’s progress. Therefore, in such scenarios having the dog on a leash when the guests come in the house is a great solution. You will be in control of his behavior and can guide him through the proper steps. And correct his jumping behavior as needed.

Young puppies

Even the young pups will pick up on this method with some patience on your part. However, you can also squat or kneel down and to greet your pup. This way he wont jump to get to you, and as he grows older he will see that as the norm. Another option is to hold his collar with one hand as you pet him with the other. The pup will associate staying on the ground with petting.

A very important note, that I can’t stress enough, make sure you praise your dog when they do what you ask! Do not wait till he wants to jump. If your dog starts to sit on its own or just looks at you to say hi, pet him! Limit his chances of having a slip up, and encourage the positive behavior excessively.

Dog jumps on kids

When Small Children Are Involved

These exercises are easy, but for children it can be more complicated to follow the steps. Being smaller, they tend to giggle, scream, wave their arms, run away or get really excited. The perfect reward for your dog’s unwanted behavior. It helps if an adult can be right there to reinforce the behavior of the dog. Maybe having the child wear a pair of old jeans so that the nails don’t scratch them as much. Another option is to crate the dog, this would also help if you can’t be there supervising, or the kids have friends over. Feeding your pooch a high reward treat, stuffed kong or his meal and close the door. This way the kids can play freely, without triggering the urge to jumping on them.

For more information on crating your dog read our article with tips and tricks

If you rather not crate your dog, a playpen or having a puppy-safe area might be the way to go. Puppers still gets to partake in the excitement, but the limited space keeps it safer for the kids.

All it takes training takes is time and patience, but jumping behavior is very correctable. Your dog can learn how to stop jumping on people, no matter what age he is.

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