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Deterrring jumping and nipping(3 Posts)
To be expected GreyPup jumps on the sofa, sometimes jumps up and is mouthy. With the mouthing I say stop, hands don’t move and he gets given a toy and praised when he plays with the toy. Am I doing the right thing? We’ve got a training coming over whilst we wait for local puppy classes. Also, how do you deter if puppy jumps up?
That is the exact advice I was given from puppy training about being mouthy and deterring to a toy then praising when playing with that.
As far as jumping is concerned, I was told once this happens, turn your back to the dog, or stand still, and don’t make eye contact with the dog until they stop jumping and when they stop or sit down to praise/reward that behavior.
Dogs do what works to get them a reward of some sort. One way to stop them doing something is to remove whatever they are finding rewarding.
If they bite hands and play continues then biting is working for them. If they bite hands and plays stops then it is not working for them and they will stop biting. That is assuming:
a) biting in itself is not fun
b) the puppy likes play
If a puppy jumps up and you greet him then jumping up is working. If he jumps up and you ignore him then jumping up is no longer working for him and he will stop.
You can speed up the learning process by making sure everyone the puppy interacts with follows the same rules - which is tricky with jumpy puppies because guests and strangers always want to greet them. Also can speed up by providing a good reward for doing something better.
e.g. If the puppy bites a toy - play continues.
e.g. if the puppy keeps all four paws on the floor then greeting continues
Some/most of this sounds like what you are doing anyway. The only other points I would make are to be aware that patience and consistency will win in the end but it might take a lot of repetition. You might still be working on jumping up (for e.g.) for a few months yet. Also, praise in itself is not especially rewarding for some/many dogs. Spend lots of other time partnering praise with something the puppy naturally likes to increase the value of praise. For example, praising the dog while giving treats will ensure that praise takes on some of the value of the treats (for the dog) and so is a better reward in itself.