My 5 month old chocolate is mostly well behaved when I am at home. She is hardly jumping up and stopped play biting....sounds great, right? Haha, well, if I ever dare to bring her to the park or whatever public place, she immediately becomes a crazy demon and jumps all over strangers while gnashing her teeth. While she is not being mean, I could see how this would scare kids....she is a 60 pound jumping lunatic who gets really excited. Any advice on how to get her to behave ANYWHERE, not just at home?*
I appreciate any input....she is in training this month. Hopefully it makes a difference-----
How much exercise is she getting? (Physical and mental)
I'd be working hard on sit-stay. Every time someone approaches or passes, have her in a sit-stay by your side. Start at a bit of distance from the sidewalk, so you have a fighting chance to get control before she makes contact with somone. Once you have that downpat, you can try having her right on the sidewalk. There, you may initially want to stand in front of her, blocking her access to the other people, and keep the leash short. Lots of low-value rewards and quiet praise when she's holding that stay.
As far as exercise, she gets a 45 minute walk several times a week (wish I could do it more!) and she has full access to my huge fenced-in back yard all day while I am at work. While I watch TV, I try to throw her toys for her so she gets some play time with me. Right now, when she tries to jump on me, I make the "ah ah" noise as obnoxiously as possible and only pet her when she is being good (i.e. feet on the floor)....
Ideally, dogs need exercise every day and not just a few times a week. This I feel is part of your problem. People underestimate a Labs need for good exercise and the behavior you are witnessing is often the result. I have just taken my crew out for an hour off leash and they are all sleeping soundly...they won't bug me again until this afternoon. They need a good 1 1/2 - 2 hours of good exercise a day to stay satisfied. If they didn't get AT LEAST an hour a day they would drive me insane.
Many people follow the '5 minute rule' -- 5 minutes of exercise per month of age. For a 5 month old that means 25 minutes of exercise once but preferably twice a day. Leash walking alone isn't enough to tire a young dog and free roam of a yard (no matter the size) isn't adequate. Dogs don't exercise themselves. Some effective forms of exercise are running off leash, swimming, retrieving, playing with other dogs, etc. etc. If you have a huge yard, invite some doggy friends over for playdates.
I hope you don't take offense to this, and believe me, I understand the need to relax after a long day at work; however, instead of watching TV, take her ouside for a retrieving session, swimming, or a play date. IMO, a 5 month should not have free reign of a back yard unsupervised. They do not go out and entertain themselves or get in a workout session while we are away.While I watch TV
She needs training, exercise, and socialization...all areas which sounds like she's lacking. She's jumping on other dogs and people because she hasn't met them. She knows you and your family but new experiences are way better than listening to you.
Get to a class and buy a Tivo....spending a little extra time up front while you are puppy is going to save you mental anguish later with they are a full grown dog. Just my 2 cents.
Dani, Rider & Rookie
SHR Watson's Safari Rider, JH, WC, CL1-R, RA, CGC, TDI
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This is a common problem that many pet people run into. Dogs do not generalize well. This means that behaviours that they learn are tied in to the context in which they occur. For example, if you teach your dog to sit in your kitchen and then take them to your living room, they will have trouble understanding the sit because the environmental cues are different.
Because of this, we need to take each behaviour we teach our dog and generalize it. This means that we need to get our dog to perform that behaviour in as many different places with as many different distractions as possible.
It is wonderful that you have taught your baby to stop jumping up and not to mouthe. However, you have likley taught her to offer this behaviour to you alone, and not other people. Or she has learned that it is not OK in the house, but fair game anywhere else. When you take her out for her walks, have her practice impulse control while other people walk by and reward her for her efforts.
Here is an excerpt on jumping up that I posted to another thread. Simply practice the below method while out on the road. Start with low value people, then work your way up to higher value people or mulitple people.
The problem with jumping up is the same problem as pulling on leash: both are innately reinforcing to our dogs. It is very hard to ask a dog not do engage in a behaviour that is pre-wired into them. If I said to you that for the next four hours, every time you smiled I would charge you $20, then took you out to socialize I would be pretty rich. You would smile without even thinking about it because when we are comfortable and social, we smile without knowing it. Dogs do the same with jumping up. Now, if instead of saying 'Don't smile", I were to say "I will pay you $1,000 if for the next four hours you can hold a frown", I would expect you would have a much easier time of not smiling.
The same applies with our dogs. Instead of teaching them not to jump, let's teach them to do something else instead and reward it. When you come into your house and your dog is waiting at the door to jump on you, click before he does and feed him and keep clicking and feeding at a very rapid rate so he will have four feet on the ground. Keep a clicker and some cookies in your car or mailbox to make this easy. After a couple of days of doing this, your dog will be aware of the fact that your coming home is an opportunity for him to win cookies and all he has to do is have four feet on the ground. Do not tell him to do anything, let him offer the behaviour all by himself. Once he becomes aware of this, wait a bit longer between clicks and ask for a little bit mroe behaviour from your dog. If he jumps up on you, you are just too slow with your clicker. Ideally you want to click a lot the first few times and feed him constantly to keep him down.
Once he is greeting you with four on the floor, you may want to increase the criteria and begin to wait until he offers a sit. Once you have a reliable sit, then you've got something! If your dog is automatically sitting 90% of the time when you come through the door, you have a pretty reliable behaviour, so now we can give it a name or a command (Off). To do this, simply say Off when he offers the sit, then click and feed him. This is how he will learn the cue. It makes no sense to teach the cue before this point as we will be associating it with unreliable behaviour.
OK, now that your dog will Off when you come through the dooor, it is time to try it with guests. To do this, you need to load your guests up with cookies and ask them to feed every time you click. You must be in charge of the clicker and follow the above steps except you can now cue the Off. This method works better if your guests feed and not you. Have your dog rehearse this over and over with a large number of guests, then he will begin to generalize and offer it to everyone he meets.
If you do the above, your dog will stop seeing guests as someone to jump up and down on and start to see them as a chance for a pay-off. Because people coming through the door have been paired with the sit for food so often, your dog will soon percieve greeting people as a new cue for sitting. Cool stuff, operant conditioning! And guess what? You won't have to hurt her at all, so you will both be happy.
To err is human:To forgive, canine."
I agree 100% with the comments of Trickster, Dani, and Fall River.
Exercising your Lab (off leash retrieves, etc.) will be as good for you as it is for her. Two recent studies show that people who regularly exercise their dogs are healthier and live longer.
Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]
Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":