A High Energy Golden Doodle Learns to Behave at the Door

Wilson (Goldendoodle)

Wilson is a one-year-old Golden Doodle who jumps up on people, bites the leash, gets over excited, pulls on the leash, countersurfs, and tries to get into the trash.

When I first arrived for the session, Wilson’s behavior was pretty subdued. In fact I had to ask his guardians a few times if it was a normal greeting. I guess it took him a minute before he decided to get excited and try to jump up on me.

Once I got inside, Wilson got even more excited. He started jumping up on his guardians, the couch, ransacking my bag and then running over to jump up on me before repeating it all over again. This gave me an idea as to the root of Wilson’s behavior issues.

I made a few suggestions and showed them a few techniques that they can use to disagree with Wilson’s overexcited energy and unwanted behaviors. I also recommended that they add some rules and showed them how to enforce them. Some people think correcting a dog is mean. But in reality, correcting a dog the right way can help increase its respect for you as an authority figure. But you have to use the right technique with good timing for the dog to understand what you want.

I spent the next few minutes showing the guardians how to calm Wilson down and claim the area around the front door when guests arrive.

Adding distance between the dog and the front door will help Wilson calm himself and make it easier for the guardian to control the situation. It was great seeing the dog start to figure it out and stay behind the boundary.

I suggested that the guardians call or text one another when coming home for the next week or two so that they can practice this exercise.

As a higher energy dog, regular structured walks will go a long way towards channeling Wilson’s unspent energy. But due to his excited, pulling behavior on the leash, his guardians were walking him as much as they would like.

I set Wilson up with a Martingale collar and added my special twist to the leash before we headed out for a short walking demo.

As usual, the Martingale and some new structure had Wilson walking next to his guardian in a nice heel position. I added some twists to the walk like having the dog stop to get a treat every so often for sitting to help it adopt a more present attention span.

Wilson’s guardians told me that he was particularly reactive to kids running or being loud so I asked the family’s two little ones to go a little crazy in the driveway as the guardian walked Wilson right next to them.

 

Adding daily structured walks will make it easier for Wilson to calm down and listen to his guardians. If necessary, short games of fetch can also be used to help take the edge off.

Wilson is just an excitable puppy who is still coming into his own. He is going to push the boundaries to test the water and see where the boundaries and limits are. If his guardians enforce the new rules and boundaries with good timing, Wilson will better understand what they do and don’t want from him.

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