Training a Pair of Wheaton Terriers to Stop Jumping on People

By: David Codr

Published Date: February 28, 2018

For this Omaha dog behavior training session we worked with a pair of Wheaton Terriers; Fergus (left) who loves to jump on people and Jerzie (right) who is reactive any time a dog appears on television.

Knowing that the dogs got over excited when guests arrive, I arranged to have Fergus’ guardians put him on a leash so I could show them how to teach a dog to stop jumping on people.

After going over my method for stopping a dog from jumping up on people with Fergus, we swapped him out for his room mate and repeated the stop jumping exercise with Jerzie. Being less excitable, she settled down faster than Fergus did.

After going over the tips to stop dog jumping, I sat down in the living room to get more info about the dogs, the other problems they wanted help with and their daily routine.

I could immediately tell the dogs were under exercised due to their behavior together and many of the problems the guardians referenced. I recommended the guardians start an exercise journal and chart the details of the exercise each dog gets each day along with a grade for its behavior that day. By playing around with the number of fetches, length of walks, etc the family will be able to find the right combination that puts their dogs in position to succeed.

After that I offered the family some management tips. We call changing the environment to the dog’s advantage “management.” In this case, blocking the dogs form looking out of windows over the front of the house will help them stop practicing being a “guard dog” ie barking at people who pass by the house. Eliminating a dog’s ability to practice unwanted behaviors is an important part of any dog behavior modification program.

Next we went over rules and structure; or lack thereof. Because dogs perceive leadership in part through our actions, the lack of rules and structure had contributed to many of the dog’s behavior problems.

After going over petting with a purpose and passive training, I showed the guardians a behavior adjustment training method to help Jerzie stop getting worked up / quasi aggressive when dogs appeared on the TV.

I was very pleased with how well Jerzie responded to the behavior adjustment training. Its going to take some practice, but if the guardians exercise her before, give her a cooling off period and leave Fergus in another room and practice this technique a few times a day for the next few weeks, she will learn to be in the room without freaking out when dogs appear on the TV.

To help the humans remember all the dog behavior tips I shared in this four hour in home dog training session, we shot a roadmap to success video you can check out below.

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This post was written by: David Codr

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