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Old 01-07-2013, 09:34 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Quit jumping on the kids!

My current puppy loves everyone, but when my kids are running around in the yard she comes up behind them and jumps up on their backs. It is not anything aggressive but it hurts them because it knocks them down. Any suggestions on how to break this since it is happening when we are not there? Kids are 5 and six. Thanks
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Old 01-07-2013, 09:37 PM   #2 (permalink)
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How old is your puppy?
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Old 01-07-2013, 09:42 PM   #3 (permalink)
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10 months. She is a rescue dog so getting a late start. In full disclosure she is a Border Collie/Kelpie mix. I know this is a GSD forum. It relates b/c I get my GSD pup in April and I need to correct this problem before then! She is doing it out of play I think. Maybe trying to herd but it seems like she is just excited.
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Old 01-08-2013, 01:55 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I doubt she's trying to herd if she's jumping on them. If it was herding behavior, she'd probably be nipping them and/or blocking them with her body.

You're going to have to teach her how to play with them. This means that you're going to have to be committed to only leaving her out in the yard with them when a parent is there to train the dog, at least for the time being. It isn't something that's going to fix itself without adult help.

How I'd probably start is teaching her to ignore them when they're running around. Sit outside with her on a leash while they play, and reward her for paying attention to you and ignoring them. It's best if you do this after a long walk or play session, where she's nice and tired--if she's under-exercised and bursting with energy, you're going to be fighting an uphill battle.

Basically, that stage just teaches her that kids running around isn't anything to get too excited about. Sure it's fun, but it happens a lot and she gets all kinds of one-on-one attention and yummy treats from Mom or Dad if she ignores them.

Once she's staying calm on the leash while the kids are playing nearby, you can try letting her off leash. Watch her like a hawk, though. If she starts getting over-excited and especially if she jumps on the child, immediately remove her from the situation and give her a time-out in a quiet area where no one is paying attention to her. A laundry room or bathroom is good for this. Don't talk to her or scold her, just silently take her there and put her up. Leave her there for 5 minutes or so, then let her out again. Repeat until your kids are tired of playing or she gets the idea.

Herding breeds are very intelligent and she will probably get the idea pretty quickly if you're consistent about it. The only other thing is to make sure she's getting plenty of exercise away from the kids. If she's not, she may be getting so excited she can't really control herself. Those are two very high energy breeds.
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Old 01-08-2013, 10:49 AM   #5 (permalink)
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School soccer games are great for this!
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Old 01-08-2013, 12:14 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thank you for the advice!
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