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How to Train a Dog Not to Jump in 2 Simple Steps

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By Nicole Cosgrove

german shepherd jumps on a woman

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We love to come home to our new pup jumping up at us with excitement. We know it’s happy to have us home, and it wants our attention. We respond with a “hello” and petting. Unknowingly, we are encouraging this bad behavior.

As dogs grow, jumping up on us can be annoying and sometimes dangerous. A small child or feeble adult can get knocked over, bruised, or injured. To stop your pup from the jumping behavior, you will need to manage the situation and train it not to jump. This can be done in two easy steps.

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The 2 Easy Steps to Stop a Dog From Jumping on People

1. Managing the Situation

This means you will need to maintain control of the situation. Do not give your dog an opportunity to jump up until it has the proper training and the dog knows it is not allowed to jump.

If your dog jumps on visitors, take these steps before the person arrives.

  • Put the dog in a crate.
  • Put the dog on a leash. Make it sit while your company enters the house.
  • Close it off in another room.
  • If your dog greets your visitor without jumping, praise the good behavior and give it a treat.

These steps will prevent your pup from jumping while it is in training.

dog inside crate
Image Credit: Noel V. Baebler, Shutterstock

2. Training

The dog needs to learn that it does not get any attention for jumping on visitors or anyone else. You should turn your back on the jumping dog. It gets attention when it has all four paws on the ground.

Find something for the dog to do that it cannot do while jumping. For example, sitting. It can’t jump and sit at the same time. The dog should only get attention when it is sitting. If it is jumping, it gets no attention.

All members of the household need to adhere to this training and be consistent. Inconsistency causes confusion for the animal and only sets back your training.

White poodle getting training
Image Credit: Erik Mclean, Pexels

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If Your Dog Jumps on Visitors

For this session, we will assume your dog knows how to “sit.”

  • Get someone the dog will be excited to see (a friend or neighbor) to help with the training session.
  • Tell the dog to “sit.”
  • Have your assistant walk toward you and the dog. If the dog stands up to greet them, the assistant will turn and walk away.
  • Tell the dog to “sit,” and have your helper approach again.
  • Keep repeating these steps until the dog remains sitting.
  • If the dog remains sitting while the helper approaches, let them reward the dog with a treat.

If Your Dog Jumps on Other People

When you are taking your dog for a walk, others may want to approach and greet your dog. Take this opportunity to control the situation and train the dog.

  • Ask the person not to approach. Tell them you do not want the dog to jump.
  • Get a treat ready and reward the good behavior.
  • Give the dog the “sit” command.
  • Allow the person to give the dog a treat if the dog remains in the “sit” position.

If a person expresses that it’s okay for the dog to jump, you can simply say no. If you want to, you can explain to them that the dog is being trained not to jump for safety reasons.

puppy dog jumps on person
Image Credit: Christian Mueller, Shutterstock

If Your Dog Jumps on You as You Come in the Door

  • Greet the dog quietly.
  • If the dog jumps on you, turn and walk back out the door.
  • Do it again. Come in and walk back out until the dog keeps his paws on the floor. This may take a while. Hopefully, you aren’t running in the house to pee.

If Your Dog Jumps Up on You While You Are Sitting

If your dog jumps on your lap, stand up. Do not react at all. Don’t talk, yell, or push it away. Ignore it until it is on all fours.

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We are all guilty of allowing our dogs to engage in bad behaviors. We may not realize it’s bad behavior until it becomes a problem. Jumping is one of those behaviors. Fortunately, it’s simple to correct with training and consistency. Remember to be patient and use positive reinforcement to teach your dog manners.

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