You walk in the door after a long day at work and your loving Saint Bernard jumps up to give you a big, slobbery kiss! Maybe you prefer your mate to greet you so heartily, but your dog always comes first! Your pet likes to greet you with jumping, tail wagging and lots of licking, while (we suspect) all you’d want yourself would rather involve the animal calmly letting you at least take off your shoes and hang up your coat.
Why do dogs jump up to meet us?
Dogs jump up to greet their beloved owners for several reasons. And for the most part, they are entirely positive.
It’s an instinct and natural behavior in four-legged friends, a tool they use to show they’re excited and happy to have you back home.
Even by the time he hears you get off the elevator or turn the key, your pet is probably already in position with a vigorous wagging tail! And rest assured, the last two, four, or eight hours must have seemed like an eternity to your furry companion before he was relieved to be home!
On the other hand, jumping up gives the dog a chance to sniff and lick your face. A gesture typical of animals of a pack, with which they greet each other when meeting. The puppies also tend to lick their mother’s face first to get her to feed them. This sign of obedience remains embedded in them throughout their lives. So it’s no wonder that since he sees you as the leader of his pack, your furry friend wants to lick your face when you come home. And without jumping, he can’t do it.
An expression of love and joy
The jumping gesture is partly dictated by pure affection, but a pinch of canine curiosity! Think about it – you’ve been out and about all day, roaming the streets, eating delicious food, meeting other people, and your pet is dying to know where you’ve been. By bringing his face close to yours, he can smell you, and so the image of your experiences is etched into his mind.
And if it has been sitting patiently at home all day, then your return is a moment of extreme excitement for the animal. Your dog associates your appearance with petting, eating, walking and playtime. And if it is obedient – with a belly rub! These are the most important moments in the life of any four-legged friend, so it is no wonder that your pet cannot hide his excitement at this prospect.
It’s nice to be welcomed and welcomed home, but if you have a medium to large dog, it can be uncomfortable and even problematic. Your pet can knock things out of your hands (like hot coffee or another drink), knock you over (if you’re not prepared). And even – he may take this behavior as acceptable and practice it on everyone who walks through your door, which will inevitably scare or hurt your friends.
Since dogs see this behavior as loving, you shouldn’t be harsh in rejecting it. If you don’t want your pet to jump, there are some ways to get them to stop.
For starters, start ignoring the behavior and only greet the animal when all its paws are on the ground. Avoid direct eye contact or face-to-face – come in, undress, hang up your coat, and only then enjoy your pet. The goal is to ignore unwanted behavior.
When your dog has calmed down (and all his paws are on the floor), you can greet him with the same enthusiasm with which he greets you. And if he gets overly excited again and starts jumping, repeat the steps. This may take some time, but as with any training, it is important to be consistent. Otherwise, you risk sending the animal mixed signals and will likely only make things worse.
Although greeting your dog is one of the sweetest things we can think of, it’s still important to feel comfortable when we come home and want to walk through the front door laden with bags of groceries, coffee, bag etc. For this, try to train your pet to greet you calmly, and if you encounter difficulties – do not hesitate to contact a professional trainer.
Photo by Anastasiya Lobanovskaya: https://www.pexels.com/photo/two-person-with-rings-on-ring-fingers-792775/