Teaching a Los Angeles Pug to Calm Down and Behave at the Door

By: David Codr

Published Date: October 10, 2017

For this Los Angeles dog training session we were called in to train a dog (5 year-old Pug Graceee) to behave at the door, stop getting excited and put an end to her nuisance barking.

When I asked the guardians what Rules Graceee had, they exchanged bewildered looks at one another before saying there were none. While this was going on, Graceee excitedly ran around the room looking for anyone who would pet her.

As a dog behavior expert, I learned a long time ago that anything your dog is doing when you pet it is what you are rewarding or enhancing. This includes excitement, aggression, anxiety, etc. I made sure to point out that by petting Graceee when she was excited was actually rewarding her for being an excited dog.

I showed the guardians a number of dog behavior tricks and tips to help them reward her for displaying desired behaviors instead of those they wanted to stop. I also went over new ways to communicate and disagree with the dog. When I made the sound I use to disagree, Graceee was taken aback and it had a profound effect on her behavior in a positive way.

To address Graceee’s excited door behavior, I had one of the guardians head outside to play the part of a guest so I could demonstrate how to claim the area around the door. You can watch this door behavior training video below.

By increasing the distance and training the dog to behave at the door in small individual steps, I was able to get Graceee to behave, not get over excited which allowed her to calm down faster.

Another activity that got the dog excited, was going for a walk. Because Pugs have large heads and small necks, I fitted Graceee up with a Martingale collar, then went over the 5 rules for a structured walk I like to use with a Martingale.

Using the Martingale and helping Graceee learn she had to be calm before we started our walk made all the difference. Instead of an excited dog running all over, her guardians had the dog walking next to them in a nice heel.

By the end of the session, Graceee was following he new rules and structure we introduced the session. Her guardians were reading her body language and communicating with her in a way that she understood, respected and responded to.

We wrapped up the session by shooting a roadmap to success video outlining all the positive dog training tips I shared with her guardians during this LA dog training session.

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