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Step-By-Step Instructions
For Obedience Training Your Dog Yourself

Off

Off is the correct command when a dog is jumping up on you or the couch. If your dog has jumped up on the couch, literally push him off while saying off. If he is small enough, you can just pick him up and put him on the floor. As soon as he is off the couch, say good boy!. If you have allowed him to get away with this in the past, it may take many tries before he learns it. And, once he learns that he can't jump onto the couch without being told to get off, he might stay on the floor and put his front legs on the couch. It's up to you if this will be acceptable or if you want him to keep his paws off the couch also. If so, take both his paws in your hands, push them gently toward the floor while saying off, and say good boy! as soon as his feet are off the couch.

Your dog likes to jump up on your dress with muddy paws just before you leave for the office. But, he is only trying to give you a hug or get some attention, but he has to learn that this is not acceptable. As he is jumping up, turn your body away from him while saying off! He should then simply sit down, at which time you immediately pet him on the head and tell him he is a good boy! He wants your attention, not your back! Even if he has already jumped on you, turn away.

Or, since you already know that he will jump up on you, you can try to beat him to the punch. As he starts to jump up, put your hand out quickly and pet him on the head and start to bend over. This action would encourage him to stay off or to sit. This is an acceptable position for him to be in when he first sees you in the morning or when you get home at night. If he is sitting patiently waiting for you to pet him each time, go greet him quickly with by petting his head (while saying good boy! or hello!) or bending down to take his paw and saying good boy! or shake. He won't see the need to jump on you to receive a greeting if you greet him first.

A third method is to stick your knee out and say down! if you see him starting to jump up. Jumping up into your knee is not comfortable. If he is really large, you might have to push him off you. When he is off you, say good boy!.

Continue either of these actions until he actually stays off, then give him extra praise and some petting and saying good boy!. This may start him jumping up again because he may get excited, so you continue the same method until he really gets the idea. Eventually, you will be able to tell him to get off anything or anybody from any distance.

To reinforce all of this, it is best to always have your dog sit before you greet him or give him a treat or anything else. This way he will soon learn that he won't get any of these things unless he does sit nicely and calmly. (Some people take it even farther and teach their dogs not to eat any dogfood, or even human food, until they are sitting and given a command to eat. This prevents them ever taking poisoned food from a bad stranger.)

Some dogs only jump on you when you go out to the backyard. They just get so excited! As soon as you open the back door, they are all over you. Try this... walk out the door backwards, don't talk to them, and don't look at them. Immediately, they act like you were already out there for an hour and they stay calm and go on about their own business.


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