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Please can someone advise me on training my dogs not to behave like excitable children when we have visitors?

(13 Posts)
Marne Fri 21-Feb-14 11:53:21

I have 2 dogs, a 6 year old staffie and a 1 year old lab x lurcher (maybe with a touch of flat coat retriever).

When we got the lab x we started training straight away and all was going well (he understood sit, lie down, go to your bed and had a great re-call) but this has gone to pot a little and he seems to spend a lot of time leaping around the house, jumping up playing with my other dog. My Staffie has always been really lazy and sleeps a lot, she loves people and on the rare occasion we have visitors she gets a bit excited, we have always managed it but now the lab has got huge and is also jumping around its become a nightmare, I end up shouting, I then have to crate the lab but he then gets very noisy (barks and cries), if I let him out he will ten start to annoy my other dog and they start playing rough (my staffie is very noisy when playing). I'm just fed up with it as I cant enjoy having visitors as I spend most of the time trying to control the dogs, shouting 'down' and then when I remove the dogs its constant barking. Its driving me nuts.

Trouble is we don't have visitors very often (maybe once or twice a week when my parents visit) so we don't get a lot of opportunities to practice and train them, my dad comes over and makes them worse by waving his arms around and encouraging them to play.

I want to be able to have people over and for the dogs to calm down after a minute or two and go and lie down. How can I do this?

Whenever I try and do any training with the lab he becomes uncontrollable, we use a clicker and treats but as soon as he see's food or the clicker he goes hyper and starts jumping around.

Owllady Fri 21-Feb-14 12:08:42

If I am expecting visitors I get a Kong ready beforehand and pass it to the dog when they arrive and tbh she huggers off with it shockwaves us alone blush and by the time she us satisfied and joins us, she has calmed down. She us very motivated by food though

I realise it's different with two though as their favourite game us winding each other up

Owllady Fri 21-Feb-14 12:10:31

Huggers = buggers
Shockwaves (wtf?) = and leaves
I have no idea why it made such bizarre changes grin

Marne Fri 21-Feb-14 12:48:21

We have kongs and we often try and give them to the lab in his crate when people come over but they don't last long and then he starts with the barking and whining, the staffie is not bothered about food at all so hard to give her something else to do, shes a people dog and just wants to be close to people but often she gets a bit too close smile.

leolion Fri 21-Feb-14 12:59:09

I have this exact problems with my Welsh Springer at the moment. He will especially not leave children alone as wants to play, sniff and lick them all the time. If we shut him away he whines and gets distressed so I'm watching this thread with interest.

ILikeToClean Fri 21-Feb-14 13:36:41

Have this problem too, in laws come over twice a week to look after DDs and FIL is rubbish at ignoring dog, saying "no get down" to him. MIL is much better at completely ignoring the jumping but oddly, as soon as they come he runs into the lounge, steals a cushion off the sofa and runs around with it for you to catch him. Only ever does this when they come -is this an attention thing? Any tips?

He also jumps up when other people come, we too don't have many visitors (wonder why?!). Will try the Kong as he loves his food. He does settle quite quickly though once you start chatting, he gets bored, huffs and lays down.

Sorry no real advice, just ignore ignore ignore (easier said than done I know!)

Owllady Fri 21-Feb-14 13:43:52

To stop them jumping, lead them before opening the door and make sure visitors ignore until they settle down?
I don't have many visitors either (we live up a lane) so even my children are wild if even the postman knocks at the door!blush

Whoknowswhocares Fri 21-Feb-14 13:45:13

To me stupidly excited and jumping = on lead before opening the door.

If you can find the right sort of visitor, then practise 'meet and greet'
On lead as above. Visitor to look at and talk to you only....no interaction with dog yet! Then only allow your visitors to greet the dog if it stays next to you with all it's feet on the floor. Any jumping and lunging and person must turn away and move back.
Dog will eventually learn that in order to get what it wants (ie saying hello) they must exercise self control

moosemama Fri 21-Feb-14 14:03:46

The two thinks I would recommend would be teaching a 'settle' and also desensitising them to people coming to and through the front door.

The settle would be a particularly good thing to teach your hyper Lab cross, as it doesn't involve any clicker or treat training. Some of these Kikopup videos might help.

This one is about building calmness in dogs that are over excitable around food.

Kikopup desensitising her dogs to visitors.

Marne Fri 21-Feb-14 14:43:54

I think people have stopped visiting because they don't like being jumped on and licked to death. If I attempt to put the lab on a lead he goes even more hyper because 'lead=walkies' (another thing that sends him hyper and crazy), he also barks at any slight noise outside as he thinks someones coming to see him. He is so big (we were told when we got him that he would be a small lab size but he has got huge) and our living room is small so not much room for all his leaping around, things get knocked over and broken and he often scratches the kids feet sad.

Thanks for the links, I will take a look xxx

ILikeToClean Fri 21-Feb-14 16:48:23

I will have a look at links too.

Whoknows - I do this and so do DDs and DH, but how do you train a FIL who does not comprehend the word "ignore"?! We do exactly what you say and dog is not nearly as bad with us when we come home, but regarding FIL, we tell him but he still thinks that by pushing dog away and saying "no, get down" that is ignoring him! Grrr...

Do you have a garden he could go and be boisterous in?

Walk him before people come ? Just pit him in another room for a bit ( stairgate ?)

Marne Sun 23-Feb-14 22:03:30

We have a big garden but if I pup him out there he jumps up at the door and barks. If I know people are coming over I will walk him first but this doesn't make much difference ( did this yesterday ), my dad came over today and encouraged them to jump up by standing in the middle of the room and waving his hands around, makes me so angry when I'm trying so hard to stop this behaviour, he doesn't listen angry, we havn't got another room to put them in, I use my kitchen for my business so can not have the dog anywhere near it! the dogs live in the living room with access to the garden and we use gates to keep them in.

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