Got a Dog That Won’t Quit? 4 Handy Tips to Get Them to Stop Jumping

Get your dog to stop jumping

Does your dog leap up for a hello when you walk through the front door? Do guests sometimes get knocked over when they stop by for a visit? Are the neighbors used to being greeted with two paws on their shoulders? If so, it’s probably time to teach your dog to stop jumping.

A jumping dog isn’t only annoying, they also aren’t showing you much respect, which means that they probably don’t see you as the pack leader. And you should be the pack leader if you want a well-balanced and obedient dog.

So how can you teach your dog to stop jumping? Here are 4 easy steps.

1. Assert Yourself as the Pack Leader

Whether you’re trying to teach your dog to stop jumping, to stop pulling ahead on walks, or to simply follow commands, you need to be the pack leader. The pack leader is calm, focused, and confident, they stand straight up and walk with their eyes forward, and they give cues — they don’t take them. Establishing yourself as the pack leader will make teaching your dog to stop jumping a lot easier.

RELATED STORY: How to Handle 6 Common Dog Behavior Problems

2. Don’t Encourage Jumping

If you greet your dog with a loud, animated voice and lots of affection when you arrive home, you’re encouraging excited behavior, which often includes jumping. The same is true for guests who come over or people who greet your dog when you’re out on a walk. When you arrive home, keep calm, and ask your guests and those greeting your dog to do the same.

3. Make Your Dog “Sit” Before They Can Say Hello

Your dog knows that if they jump on you or someone else, they’re going to get attention, whether it’s positive or negative (in the moment, it doesn’t make much difference to the dog). But you can teach your dog that there is another way to get attention: by sitting nicely. Teach your dog the “sit” command, and when you come home or have guests over, make your dog sit before anyone is allowed to pet them or give them attention. When your dog sits make sure you reward them with a treat and plenty of praise.

RELATED STORY: How to Calm Down a Dog

4. The Right Kind of Punishment

Jumping isn’t always about excitement or asserting dominance; sometimes it’s a way to release anxious energy. And yelling at your dog or shoving them off can actually make the problem worse. If you want to get your dog to stop jumping while it’s happening, simply turn your back, look away from the dog, or leave the room without any fanfair. Ask your guests to do the same. Your dog should eventually learn that jumping only means they’ll be ignored, and that’s the last thing they want.

Does your dog jump? Or have you gotten your dog to stop jumping? Leave a comment and tell us about it, and consider signing up for PetPlus. PetPlus is a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, vet visits, boarding, and more. Learn more at PetPlus.com.

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Back To School! Dog Classes to Take This Fall

Within the next few weeks, sleepy-eyed children will begin lining up at bus stops with shiny new backpacks and freshly sharpened pencils, ready for the start of a new school year. It’s an exciting time, but if you have kids and a dog, it can also be a confusing time for your four-legged friend.

Many dogs suffer from separation anxiety when their favorite playmates are suddenly missing every day, and you might notice some moping behavior. One way to get your dog back in good spirits? Sign them up for school, too! Dog classes not only offer mental and physical stimulation, they also teach important skills and provide an opportunity for socialization.

Here are three dog classes to consider for your pup this fall.

Basic Obedience Dog Classes

When it comes to dog classes, basic obedience is a must-do. In most classes, dogs learn important everyday commands like “sit,”“stay,”“down,” and “come” as well as loose-leash walking (“heel”) and impulse control. Many basic obedience classes also introduce ways to problem solve common issues, like chewing or jumping. Whatever basic obedience class you choose, just make sure that the trainers are certified and use a positive approach (versus one based on punishment). You may want to ask friends or family for recommendations, or check out your local AKC dog club.

RELATED STORY: 5 Steps to Dog Obedience Training

Canine Good Citizen Dog Classes

Have you ever thought that your dog might make a good therapy dog? Or perhaps you just want your dog to have good manners in your home, out in public, around other people, and other dogs? Then consider signing up for a Canine Good Citizen training class that will prepare you for the Canine Good Citizen test. The Canine Good Citizen test is a certification program through the AKC that evaluates dogs to determine if they are reliable family and community members. Each dog must pass a series of tests, including greeting a stranger, moving politely through a crowd, sitting politely for petting, being left with a stranger, and more. Once your dog passes, they will receive a certificate from the American Kennel Club. To find training classes in your area, visit the AKC’s Canine Good Citizen Training/Testing page.

RELATED STORY: The Top 10 Dog Training Tips

Agility Training Dog Classes

You might be looking at your wrinkly Bulldog thinking, “agility training? Perhaps not…” But the truth is that any dog can take part in agility training, so long as they are healthy and the course and obstacles are appropriate for your dog’s size. Agility training is an active sport in which your dog follows your cues to move through an obstacle course of tunnels, poles, jumps, and more. It’s loads of fun, and great exercise too. To get started, find a local agility training group. To learn more, visit the AKC’s Agility Homepage.

Will you be signing up for any dog classes this fall? Leave a comment and let us know! And to have more money in your pocket to spend on classes, sign up for PetPlusPetPlus is a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, vet visits, boarding, and more. Learn more at PetPlus.com.

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How to Clicker Train Your Dog

So what’s the point of clicker training? Don’t you get dependent on a device to get your pet to do anything?

Great questions!

Here is how to clicker train your dog.

The point of clicker training is to get your dog’s attention in a consistent fashion, which can make training go faster. You don’t become dependent on the device, because over time, your dog will recognize your commands, regardless of whether you’re using the clicker or not. Eventually, you can stop using the clicker altogether.

1. Choose your signal.

The first step is to choose the signal you will use to inform your pet that a command has been given and there’s a potential for treats to be earned.

You can buy an inexpensive clicker, or you can simply choose a different sound, like snapping your fingers, tapping your foot, or clicking your tongue.

See what works best at getting your dog’s attention.

The most important part of any training method is that you’re consistent, so see what works and stick to it in order to clicker train your dog successfully.

2. Choose a reward.

To start, it helps immensely to hold your dog’s attention if you use a mixture of treats and praise. Choose the most delicious treat in the world to your dog.

Then over time, as your dog begins to respond reliably to commands, you can phase out the treats and rely on praise alone.

3. Choose consistent commands.

There’s the word “consistent” again. To get any training to stick, you need to be steadfast in your methods. When it comes to commands, keep them to one or two words, such as “Sit,” “Stay,” “Heel,” and “Come.”

Make a list of commands to practice with your dog so you remember which commands you chose. Don’t make your dog think too hard about what you’re saying; it’s enough to learn how to obey!

4. Watch your dog’s attention level.

Stick to regular meal times. You want to keep make sure your dog isn’t starving when it’s time to train, or their energy will be drained and they won’t be able to focus as well.

As training progresses and your dog earns treats, they will feel fuller and they won’t be as motivated to work for your rewards.

When going about clicker train your dog keep sessions focused and short so your dog doesn’t get stuffed, bored, and burned out on training.

Do you have any stories or tips to share about training your dog? Let us know in the comments, and consider signing up for PetPlus,a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, vet visits, boarding, and more.

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Prep Your Pup for Baby’s Arrival

For moms- and dads-to-be, right alongside all of the other mounting to-dos of getting ready for baby, is making sure that your dog is prepared for the new family member. Here are four helpful tips for what you can do before your baby’s birth to make sure your pup knows how to behave around your fragile little one.

Give a rules refresher: Hopefully, your dog is already good at the basics — sit, stop, down, heel — and isn’t a jumper. Just in case, spend some time reviewing obedience skills, and making sure your dog knows how to behave properly.

RELATED STORY: Dog Behaviors

Introduce any new rules and routines: Once baby’s around, you might need some new guidelines for your dog. Perhaps it will become extra important for him not to bark at loud noises. Or maybe it’s just a matter of your dog getting accustomed to the idea that your schedule for meals and walks may shift. If there are any changes that you can predict will occur after baby’s arrival, do your best to get your dog adjusted early.

RELATED STORY: Try An Indoor Training Class With Your Dog

Set limits around baby items: Will you be allowing the dog in the baby’s room? Can the dog go on or near the baby’s crib? Don’t let it be a surprise for your dog about new areas of your home that might be off-limits, or any furniture that has a strict “no dogs allowed” policy. Start training the dog to avoid furniture and rooms that are off-limits, or set the guidelines for what kind of behavior is allowed around baby items early on so that your dog won’t be surprised with new rules and scolds when baby arrives.

Scale Back Your Time Together: You may be used to your dog as your constant companion, but once your baby arrives, you’ll likely have less time together. Make the transition less shocking for your pup by easing up on the amount of time you spend together gradually.

PetPlus members get savings on vet visits, medications, boarding and more. Check it out at PetPlus.com.

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