Jumping is a very common and often persistent problem for many dogs and their families. In some situations it’s more than just annoying and can be dangerous when a large dog jumps on small children or elderly people.
Luckily, jumping is a simple problem to combat. First it should be noted that the vast majority of dogs are jumping for the same reason. To get our attention! Many of these dogs are rewarded for jumping every time they do so, even if the attention is negative, such as a scolding. Some dogs even think it’s a game if they are pushed off of a person, which only increases their jumping!
The answer here is to remove all attention from the dog when they jump. The dog shouldn’t be scolded, pushed down, or otherwise given attention to when they jump. Make the policy in the house that all four of the dog’s paws must be touching the ground to get attention. This way the dog learns that jumping no longer gets them what they want. Make sure you’re avoiding eye contact with them and not making any noise when you’re jumped on.
Initially your dog may seem to get even worse, this is entirely normal and is called an extinction burst. Imagine, for example, that one morning your car doesn’t start. Do you only turn the key once, or do you try again a few times? Your dog goes through the same process, after all jumping has been a winning strategy for so long. Seeing your dog try to get your attention more vigorously is a good thing in this case!
Guests and family members that don’t live with you can completely derail your training. Dogs easily learn who will ignore them, and who won’t. Remember, any attention a dog is given when jumping is reinforcing!
With that in mind, if you know you have a guest coming that will be unable to help your dog by ignoring him, crating your dog or putting them in another room is a good solution. During training it is vital that the dog have more success doing what you’d like them to do(not jump), instead of practice their old ways.