Jumping, jumping, jumping! - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-03-2013, 11:40 PM Thread Starter
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Jumping, jumping, jumping!

Zimmer definitely has some faults, but his most prominent is the fact that he jumps up on everybody, especially when he gets excited (usually when meeting new people/greeting people when they come in the house). I'm still working on his basic commands, i.e. heel, sit, stay, etc. (most of which he's learned/already knew), but when he gets too riled up, it's like he doesn't hear me. I always warn people when we first meet them that he likes to jump, and I haven't had a complaint since, but I don't want to project the idea that I have no control over my dog. He just loves meeting new people, and "greeting" us when we get home.

With our other dog that we took to obedience classes (something I fully plan on doing with Zim after his "grace period" with us is done), the trainer always said when the dog jumps up to grab them by the paws and walk them backwards because they don't like it. That worked for the other dog - not at all with Zimmer. He thinks it's a game (and gets a little mouthy when I do it). I'm now in the habit of turning my body sideways when Zim jumps up to discourage him from doing it, but I can't exactly tell a stranger to do that, can I? I try to get him to heel when he and I will be coming in contact with someone new, but like I said, he just ignores me.

Is there something else I could do to discourage him jumping up on everybody he meets? Should I just avoid these little meet and greets altogether until he's a bit more trained?
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-03-2013, 11:44 PM
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I've HEARD to ignore the dog when you come in. If he's loose in the house when you come home ignore him (don't push him off, don't say no. Nothing) and wait til he calms down to say hello. Or if he's created wait til he calms down to let him out and say hello.

I could be way off..but just what I've heard/read. Others will be able to give you expert advice.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-13-2013, 01:13 AM
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Hey, how old is zimmer? It will get worse if the stranger accepts this form of greeting.. i.e patting, playing with him when he's up on them, happy tone etc.. I suggest you take help from some friend & u keep zimmer on a leash and in her crate/room while u open the door.. then on a leash, take him to meet the person after he/she has been seated.. and tell the helper to ignore zimmer if he jumps to greet & just talk normally to u.. same with u.. completely ignore the puppy & talk normally.. he will realize it's no fun being ignored.. when he's calm, shower praises, pat & play!!

continue this exercise with different friends & once u think his jumping is sorted, u can try with strangers

hope this helps

Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea!

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-13-2013, 01:32 AM
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you know he jumps. why don't you hold him so he doesn't
jump when he meets someone. with leash in your right
hand going across your body to the left side to the dog.
slide your left hand down the leash (towards the collar)
to prevent him from jumping. fold the leash down or get
a shorter leash. train your dog how to meet and greet
and that includes when you come home.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-13-2013, 10:08 AM
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This was the biggest problem mine had. She is very good at meeting strangers, just put her in a sit and she behaves very nicely. With people she knows? They don't stand a chance. My son can be in his room for 20 minutes and when he comes out you would swear she didn't see him for days. The same when we come home from work. Now when we come home, we trained her to jump on the couch and then she would get pet and that has worked. As soon as the door opens she is on the couch waiting When people come over I either put her in a down, but I feel I'm pushing that with her, so I put her in another room and once everyone is settled I let her out. She then goes to everyone to say hi, but not jumping....that works the best. Good Luck and don't stop your meet and greets, they can help with all of your training.

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-13-2013, 10:33 AM
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For Bear, I would bring my knee up to prevent the contact he wanted, with a sharp 'no'. That worked for family. But we also kept a treat box on our doorstep with a note that read 'BRING ONE IN'. We would prepare guests during conversation prior to their visiting. When people would come over during Bear's training, they all learned to turn their backs and be trees. Once he calmed, they would offer simple praise, and treat. Worked like a charm.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-13-2013, 10:37 AM
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This behavior has exploded with Spirit. I used to think there was no such thing as Excessvie Greeting Disorder with a GSD. Boy was I wrong. It gets crazy at my house sometimes
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-13-2013, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by zimmer View Post
Is there something else I could do to discourage him jumping up on everybody he meets? Should I just avoid these little meet and greets altogether until he's a bit more trained?
No, it would actually be better if you USED those times as training opportunities. It's hard to train him not to jump on people if he's not allowed to greet people, but you need to manage him so he's not able to jump on them.

My dogs get very excited when people come over, even though they're adults at 7 and 4, because we don't have guests that often. I keep them on leash until they calm down, then I'll drop the leashes and let them drag them until I'm sure they won't jump, and only then do I take the leashes off.

If you're out and about and people approach, train him to sit. If he breaks the sit, stop until he sits again. Have the people back away if necessary, so his behavior controls whether or not he gets to meet them. Calm polite behavior means people continue approaching, out of control jumping means he doesn't get to meet them.

As far as greeting you when you come home, that was an issue I struggle with for a LONG time! My dogs were so happy to see me that it seemed like nothing would work to stop it. One thing I've tried that is helping is to not come in if there are heads sticking through the crack as I open the door. They do know "go" (in the direction I point) and I've taught them to back up with the "back" command, so I use those too. I start to open the door and then close it again as many times as necessary to get them to back away from the door until I can get through it.

I also had a bag of treats in the car, and I'd grab a few before I got out, and as I opened the door I'd toss them into the entry, over the dogs' heads while I walked in. Whoever wanted them had to move the fastest!

Also, I noticed that if I came and went a couple of times they were less excited each time, so whatever method I was working on, I might do it 2 or 3 times in a row. It took awhile, but they are MUCH better, and now I can almost always get in the house unmolested. Halo is the worst jumper (she's the younger one), and now she'll often move away from the door and go find a ball as I'm coming in the house, and she'll run happy circles through the kitchen, dining room, living room, and back to the entry, with her ball in her mouth instead of jumping all over me. I greet them when they've got all four feet on the floor.

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Keefer 8/25/05-4/24/19 ~ The sweetest boy
Halo 11/9/08-6/17/18 ~ You left pawprints on our hearts
Dena 9/12/04-10/4/08 ~ Forever would have been too short
Cassidy 6/8/00-10/4/04
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-13-2013, 12:41 PM
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For some dogs, ANY type of physical contact when they are jumping will be seen as a reward. Kneeing them, grabbing paws, hold them down, etc. The dog sees these actions as engaging him in play and might just make the jumping worse.

The best way (but hardest) is to COMPLETELY ignore the dog while it is jumping. Turn your back to them. Do not speak. Do not touch them. Do nothing, just keep turning so your back is to them.

This is hard to do because it's hard NOT to do something when a dog is jumpingjumpingJUMPING on you.

But the dog will quickly learn that jumping gets them NOTHING.

When the dog stops jumping you instantly turn and praise them - CALM, quiet praise. You don't want to get them riled up again.

Now, the first few times you try this as soon as you turn towards the dog to praise they (most likely) will start jumping again. Fine. Stand up, turn your back and ignore.

I call this the Four On The Floor rule. You get NO attention from me until all four of your feet are on the floor.

Work on this on your own at first - like when you come home and the dog gets all excited. Then enlist the help of dog-savvy friends. (It's easier to ask a dog person to stand there and get jumped on by a dog while doing nothing about it than it is to ask a NON-dog person ). Have them do the exact same thing. Turn their back, ignore the dog and praise only when all 4 are on the floor.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-13-2013, 01:12 PM
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Lauri, I love that method, and it's worked with prior dogs, but it just didn't work with Keefer or Halo, which is why I had to try some other things. Neither of them have any problem with jumping on my back instead of my front, they were perfectly happy to do so, and it didn't matter how completely I ignored them. The behavior was obviously self reinforcing to them and didn't require any reinforcement from me.

With Keef I'd walk in the door, and without saying anything or looking at him, I'd immediately turn my back, close the door, and stand there. And he'd jump on my back, bad boy! I gave it a good try too, when months and years went by (yeah, I put up with it for a long time - bad ME!) and he didn't get any better, and then Halo came along and was an even more incorrigible jumper than he was, it was obviously time to try something else. 160 pounds of happy excited dogs jumping all over me was just not acceptable, and getting them to move away from the door long enough to actually get through it was a new challenge with Halo that needed to be addressed.

I have used the ignore thing to extinguish behavior very successfully in the past, though, and it's always worth trying.

Cava 1/6/18
Keefer 8/25/05-4/24/19 ~ The sweetest boy
Halo 11/9/08-6/17/18 ~ You left pawprints on our hearts
Dena 9/12/04-10/4/08 ~ Forever would have been too short
Cassidy 6/8/00-10/4/04
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