Dogs jump up on people for various reasons. Usually it’s for attention and a way to show their enthusiasm for seeing you come home from work. They’re excited and the energy produced from it comes out as jumping. If you’re lucky your dog may not be the jumping type and instead zoom around the room and with a tail wagging so hard it wags the body. Sometimes dogs will jump up because they aren’t sure who the new stranger is in the house and jumping on them, creating a reaction in the person, and possibly curbing the person is a way for your dog to control them or cope with the stranger.
If you do have a jumper there are a few ways to curb this behavior.
1: If your dog jumps up out of happy excitement you can manage this by placing a baby gate in a doorway and not allowing your dog to come and greet you as soon as you walk into the house. If your dog is crated while you’re gone, don’t immediately go and let him out, hang up your coat, put down your car keys, and then calmly let him out. Talking in a high pitched tone, running to your dog, or creating excitement can make your dog even more exited than he already is and make him bounce around.
2: Try ignoring your dog when he jumps. Turn your back each time he jumps up on you. Don’t look at him, don’t talk to him, and don’t touch him. Fold your arms and be boring. Your dog might try harder and jump higher to get your attention but eventually, he will give up.
3: Teach your dog to do something else when you come home and other people come over. The excitement of seeing you or meeting new people or old friends will still be there but if you teach your dog to run and get a toy and bring it to you so you can play a quick game of fetch that will prevent jumping. The energy needs to go somewhere. If you can redirect it to a fun game or activity that lasts a few minutes that will certainly help.
4: If your dog is not comfortable around guests in your house and jumps as a way to gain control or a form of fear aggression, it’s safer for everyone to keep him separated from your guests. Put him in a room or a crate with a few toys. If he calms down and seems curiously afraid, let him out and let your guests know to let him check them out and not push the envelope and try to pet him. Everyone needs to be calm for this to work well or else your dog may start barking and be scared or your guests might get injured. If he can’t calm down and is upset, it may be best to keep him in a room while you have friends over for the whole time. This makes for a happier dog and happier guests.
5: Consistently reinforce a no jumping rule. Don’t allow him to jump on you but not others. That can be confusing. If he’s not sure how to greet strangers, ask him to sit before your friends pet him and reward his good behavior.