Why Do Dogs Jump on People?
Our staff loves taking care of and seeing each dog that comes to us for boarding, daycare, and grooming. Recently we’ve had a few instances where our staff or our clients has been injured due to dogs getting too excited and jumping up on them. Therefore, we’re reaching out to help educate you on why dogs jump on people and how you can train them to prevent this. In turn, this helps us keep everyone safe so we can continue serving you in the best way possible!
We are asking for your support and cooperation to keep our staff, other pets, and all our clients safe, and our programs open and available to your pet.
Reasons Why Your Dog Jumps
Greeting their pack members
Most of the time, your dog will jump up on you simply as a way of greeting you. This is especially true if you’ve been away from them, and your pet is super excited to see you. Dogs greet each other by sniffing each other’s faces, and butts, so they think they need to jump up to your face to get a good whiff of where you have been and with whom! Puppies will also jump up to their mothers in greeting and for safety. Since you are hopefully the pack leader, they may simply be mimicking this behavior. But there are behaviors on your part that can help reduce or eliminate this dangerous behavior in dogs.
Dominate Pack Members or Strangers
There are various ways in which dogs display dominance and jumping up is undoubtedly one of them. This is especially true when a dog meets new people or new dogs and attempts to gain control of the situation by showing their dominance over the new person or new dog. This can be dangerous and unsettling for the person or dog being jumped on! Sometimes, the jumping is accompanied by growling, mouthing, scratching, or destroying furniture or clothing.
To Get Attention
Another potential reason for dogs jumping up on people is simply attention-seeking. The dog may have pent-up energy and is thus easily excitable and jumps up to get attention. They may be bored from not being exercised or interacted with enough and are simply telling you that it is time for a walk or play session. Connie Winters’ Pet Resort offers a daycare/ camp program for years to help give socially acceptable dogs the opportunities to play and expend their energy in a safe environment with trained loving staff members and other social dogs of similar size and temperament.
How to Stop Your Dog from Jumping
To stop your pooch from jumping up on people, you will need to engage in a training program at home along with the support of our staff. Ideally, this type of correction training should begin from puppyhood, but jumping can also be reversed at any age with enough patience and consistency.
The first essential step is to stop encouraging the jumping behavior. You may not realize it, but if your dog greets you by jumping up onto you, and you greet them back, with even a smile, you are inadvertently encouraging and reinforcing the behavior. To stop this behavior, avoid giving your dog any attention until they have calmed down and sit down. By turning your back to them, so that they cannot see your face and crossing your arms across your chest until they settle down, you are showing them that the behavior is not okay.
If your dog is jumping on visitors or our staff, it can be more challenging to stop the behavior. The best way to train your dog to stop jumping is to put them on a short leash and insist in a sit beside you when friends (or staff) arrive and make them sit and stay calm before greeting new and old friends. Make sure your friends do not encourage the jumping behavior that you are trying to eliminate. Most people and dogs do not like being jumped on- do not let a few people spoil your dog’s participation in camp or family gatherings. Don’t forget to reward your dog when a sit nicely and accept petting and attention in a sit position. Only the sit behavior, is rewarded.
Positive reinforcement training is the most helpful method in stopping your dog from jumping. If your dog doesn’t jump or listen to you when you make the command for them to get off, give them praise or a treat to reinforce the behavior. It will help greatly to ensure that your family also follows the rules and ignores your dog’s jumping and to inform any visitors of your training intentions.
Most of the time, dogs jump on people simply because they are excited and want to greet them, and have never been taught the proper way to introduce themselves. The behavior could also be dominance or attention-seeking, but in any case, it’s usually an easy problem to fix with some patience. With consistent training, you can quickly train your dog to stop the behavior with a sit command — just make sure your family and friends are on board, 100% of the time! If you are having trouble training your dog to this command, please ask for help from our front desk staff. We can schedule a short private lesson for you or re-enforce your training during exercise sessions and camp. We also offer training classes for you and your dog. We love our furry friends and love to spend time with them, but we also love our dedicated staff and our dog families and want to protect everyone.