Do you have a dog that gets hyperactive and excited whenever they hear the bell rings? If you have one, then maybe it is a problem for you too. These dogs bark wildly and rush to the door whenever someone knocks. These behaviors seem cute at first, but they are somewhat disturbing to other people if they continue to do it.
There are hypotheses that have been made regarding this behavior. They would say that these dogs see themselves as equal with the dog owners, or even above them. Why? Because they have no accepted authority figures. What owners should do is to set up some restrictions or rules that could guide their dog the way to good behavior.
Below are some steps on how to get your dog to be calm when guests arrive.
1. Clear the yard
If you have a confined space where you and your dog can train, the better. But if you have a yard, then it works good enough for your dog. Establish an area where they can play and chew their stresses out.
Some dogs that are leashed or that doesn’t have an area where they can run to has a more inclination to having this kind of problem than other dogs.
2. Consult with the Vet
Seek assistance from your resident vet on what to recommend for your dog as a stress reliever toy. The usual ideas are bully sticks that could be dense enough to be chewed on. You could also include carrot sticks or even a few wooden sticks that they can manage.
3. Practice door exercises
This part of the training will take longer. You are now going to start to establish authority by making your dog follow your lead instead of letting him rush first. All you have to do is to show the intention that you are going to go outside.
Reach for the door. If your pup rushes in front of you even if you are there, then do not open the door. Sit down and do another thing again. if your dog calms down, then you can try again. But if your dog reaches out to you and plead, do not pet him. This will just reinforce the behavior that he did near the door.
Repeat this step until he manages to stay behind and let you walk first through the door. Reward by letting him pass the door into the chew yard.
4. Leash training
This training involves the use of a medium-length leash for dogs. Attach the leash to your dog. Then put pressure on the leash and put something exciting for him to see. If he rushes to it, he will realize that he is restricted by the leash. Although this behavior can be somewhat brutal, it works.
If he calms down, lighten the pressure on the leash until he is near the reward. Do not let him drag the leash. Remove the pressure on the leash completely if he manages to stay calm for a long time even while the reward is near him. Repeat this step until he can easily calm himself even when he is excited about something.
5. Establish authority to reinforce good behavior
It was already mentioned that your dog doesn’t treat you as an authority figure. So, what you have to do is to establish yourself as one. You can do this by establishing some ground rules that your dog has to follow.
One example is with regards to your furniture. If your dog loves to stay with you on the couch but then he barks wildly and excitedly whenever a rabbit can be seen at the window, then he has to get off the couch. Do not make him return.
The next rule can be applied to the door exercises step. Approach the door and let your dog near it. If he is wagging excitedly, then do not open it. Wait until he sits down for a while before opening the door. On that way, he gets to follow your lead more often.
Another rule that you can establish is to let them wait for permission before eating. Do not give food if they are excited. Wait until they sit down before you put their bowl in front of them. The last rule that can easily be applied is not to pet them if they are showing hyperactivity. Wait for them to settle down before you pet them.
6. Recreate situations that make them excited
Although this step could somehow make them more excited, what it does is to make them desensitize with the exciting things around them. The more they are exposed to these things, the more common it becomes.
Also, reward every time they calm down. That way, he can still make himself calm even if the things that are exciting for him is still present. You are also recreating methodical steps of good behavior that you want for your dog.
Follow the detailed steps above to make your dog obey you. Additional knowledge pays a lot. Thus, below are some tips that you could remember.
Tips to remember:
1 Everything you do trains your dog
Whatever time you spent with your dog makes them learn. This is how we unknowingly train them in many ways, even while feeding, waking up, etc. Consistency is the key, and if you don’t want your dog to immediately have bad behavior, then you should’ve established a routine from the start.
Now that you know this common mistake among dog owners, you should now modify your interaction with your dog especially if you are planning for a new one.
2 Don’t sit down when reprimanding your dog
If your dog doesn’t treat anyone as an authority figure, then don’t sit down if you are going to reprimand him. Maintain a standing position as it establishes your level with him. This aids in making your dog obey your commands in the long run.
3 Pet your dog when only necessary
This petting without any reinforcement of good behavior slightly adds to the problem. This is the case when dogs that do bad behavior begs for your petting but then you still pet them. As a result, the bad behavior is reinforced plus your authority figure is slowly being pushed away. Why? Because when they beg for petting, you give it to them.