How to Stop Your Pug From Jumping Up
Does Your Puppy Like To Jump Up On People?
When your Kilo spins in circles and jumps up to greet me when I walk in the door, it is a friendly, flattering gesture. Pugs are very social creatures. Jumping, spinning, nipping, rubbing, licking and bouncing are how they show affection and get attention.
My baby is so excited to see me and looks adorable doing backflips and celebrating my return. He shows just how important I am to him and how much he misses me when I am out. I confess, I love it, especially as the rest of the family tend to give less enthusiastic greetings now.
Kilo is small and does not jump up aggressively, he just tries to get closer to my face. However, while an enthusiastic greeting from Kilo may be very cute to me, it is usually much less cute to others. It can be frightening for young children, people with allergies, strangers scared of dogs and elderly. It can damage clothing and ladder stockings. Jumping up uninvited is generally not a desirable behaviour in dogs. It is a good idea to stop your pug from jumping up and teach them a more appropriate way to greet people and get attention.
Gillian Ridgeway, head trainer of Who’s Walking Who Dog Training Centres shares her expert tips on how to stop your pug from jumping up on people and how to say “hi” politely!
Teaching Your Pug How To Properly Say “Hello”
The first trick when you’re trying to train your pug not to jump up on people is to make sure that your puppy doesn’t jump up on you. Oops. Fail.
If your pug starts to jump up on you, stand still, don’t look at your dog, and bring your hands and arms up to your chest so that your dog won’t lick them or paw at them. Once you’ve done this, calmly wait until your dog stops jumping up then reward them.
Do not reward jumping up on you with attention or treats.
Provide and Reward An Alternative
The best solution to the jumping up problem is providing your dog with an alternative satisfying method of greeting you at their level.
One option is a strong sit-stay cue as this can refocus and calm your dog down. They can’t jump up if they are seated and they get eye contact. Once your dog is calm, then kneel down and give him a warm hug and kiss and reward for the good behaviour.
In my case with Kilo, we run over to the couch and I ask him up for a Pug Hug. He jumps onto my knee and we give each other a big hug and lots of kisses and back rubs. My daughter does the same and we all get a lot of pleasure from this. In my husband’s case, he gets down at Kilo’s level and goes “hi little guy” and gives him some good pats and back rubs. Sometimes he even picks him up for a hug.
Never let anyone else allow your puppy to jump up on them! Most feel, “It’s OK, he’s so cute, I don’t mind if he jumps on me”. If your pug jumps up, immediately intervene, put your pup in a sit, praise the puppy then scold the person!
While your pug is in a sit, let the person then greet him and give positive reinforcement. This helps your puppy to understand that a calm greeting will get a reward. In my case, I have to be careful as Kilo is reactive to certain strangers. I let him smell the person’s feet and legs, then let them drop him a treat but not pat him. Eventually, when he is calm and comfortable and associates them with a treat, he can choose to go to them and say hi politely if they are seated and comfortable too. A strange hand coming down to pat him or even someone trying to make eye contact and get too close too fast at his level can scare him and cause a nasty reaction.
I have seen other people pushing their dogs away and saying no sternly but I am not sure this would be as effective as the reward based method long-term with Kilo, and it certainly would not be as fun for me.
Be Positive and Consistent
- Get down to their level to give affection and attention.
- Do not reward a puppy for jumping up.
- Do not allow other people to let your pug jump on them.
- Do not give in! Do not give up! Practice and a positive attitude is essential!