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10 Training Tips for Eager Greeters


October 18, 2016 Photos by: Javier Brosch/Bigstock

Who’s at the door? I bet it’s a new friend – I must greet them accordingly! If your dog is an eager greeter, try these training tips that will tone down their welcome.

When the doorbell rings, does it send your dog into a barking frenzy? Does he jump up on your guests as soon as they walk through the door? A friendly dog is a wonderful thing, but there comes a point when your dog’s friendliness can be too much. Here’s how to stop your dog from jumping up on and barking at your guests.

Teaching Your Dog Not to Bark at Guests

Many dogs have natural protective instincts that drive them to bark at anyone or anything that encroaches on their perceived territory. This can be a good thing if you are looking for a guard dog, but it can become a nuisance if your dog barks at the drop of a hat (especially if you live in close quarters such as a condo or apartment building). One of the most effective ways to stop your dog from barking at guests is to first teach him to bark on command and then teach him to stop barking on command. Here is a sample training sequence you might try:

  1. Have a friend or family member stand outside the front door of your house while you wait inside with your dog (have some treats on hand as well).
  2. Ask your friend to knock or ring the doorbell in order to get your dog excited enough to bark.
  3. As soon as your dog barks, mark the behavior by saying “Good” or using a clicker then reward him with a treat.
  4. Repeat this sequence a few times then start giving a verbal command before ringing the doorbell – something like “Speak” usually works well.
  5. Keep working with your dog, saying “Speak” just before ringing the doorbell and only rewarding him when he speaks on command.

Once your dog has gotten the hang of this training sequence you can adjust it to teach him to stop barking on command. Go through the training sequence as listed above but do not reward your dog for barking – instead, after you tell him “Good”, give him a “Hush” command. Wait for him to stop barking then say “Good” again and give him the treat. Repeat as necessary until your dog responds consistently to the “Speak” and the “’Hush” commands.

Teaching Your Do Not to Jump Up on Guests

Another problem many dog owners have with overly eager greeters is their dog’s habit of jumping up on guests or licking them. Many dogs develop this behavior because their owners unknowingly reinforce it when they are young and small. Here is a simple training sequence to remedy this problem:

  1. Have a friend or family member stand outside the front door of your house while you wait inside with your dog (have some treats on hand as well).
  2. Ask your friend to ring the doorbell and then enter the house, ready to respond as soon as the dog jumps up.
  3. When your dog jumps up, have your friend immediately turn around and ignore the dog, keeping his arms held close to his body.
  4. Wait for your dog to calm down and to stop jumping up then tell him “Good” and let your friend turn around and pet him calmly for a few seconds.
  5. Repeat this training sequence as needed until your dog gets the hang of it.

Even if most of the people you have over to your house are dog lovers, not everyone likes to be attacked by a ball of friendly fur as soon as they walk through the door. A well-trained and well-behaved dog is a wonderful thing and, by utilizing the training tips provided above, you can make it a reality!

Kate Barrington

Kate Barrington is the loving owner of two cats (Bagel and Munchkin) and a noisy herd of guinea pigs. Having grown up with golden retrievers, Kate has a great deal of experience with dogs but labels herself a lover of all pets. Having received a Bachelor’s degree in English, Kate has combined her love for pets and her passion for writing to create her own freelance writing business, specializing in the pet niche.


Watch the video: Usher u0026 Greeter Training Video (June 2021).