Iím trying to help some folks with their dog. He jumps up on people more than any other dog Iíve ever met. (He's a medium-sized mixed breed dog with a narrow/slender body type, about a year and a half old. He gets a good amount of exercise because his owners go out running for miles through the mountains pretty much every morning, and their dogs run loose with them.)
I try to encourage everyone to only reward him for keeping four on the floor, and Iíve tried to work with him on "Sit" and "Down" cues. I think that it can be difficult to ignore his jumping because he is so persistent and sometimes it's painful.
He now offers up sits a lot, but when people donít give him attention for sitting, he bounces up and jumps on people. I try to give him attention for sitting before he has a chance to jump, but he constantly wants attention for sitting and will often sit and wait for attention, then jump if you canít pay attention to him at that moment.
I was working on rewarding him for holding longer sits (treating multiple times during the sit) and working on spacing out the rewards more and more. But I think that one of his owners feels like I'm rewarding him too much and that I'm encouraging him to offer up sits (and then jump if he's not rewarded right away).
I've also tried just responding to certain sits (that he offers up on his own) by petting him (or giving him treats or toys), but other times just acknowledging him with verbal praise or not particularly responding in any way.
* Work up to waiting longer & longer before marking the sit (with a clicker or marker word) and only rewarding once. (Would this be better than what I'm currently doing, and why?) Of course I wouldn't only make it more difficult; I would vary the times before marking the behavior as correct.
* Work on only rewarding him (with food or toys) for sitting with the "Sit" cue, but not for sitting on his own... although if he sits on his own, can I at least acknowledge it with verbal praise?
* Reward other non-jumping behaviors such as just walking with four-on-the-floor, lying down, etc.
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Other random note: One of his owners told me that when they are out running, the dog will often randomly sit and expect a reward, then jump up on his owners since they are busy running and do not acknowledge him in that moment.
I have been wondering if it would help for them to occasionally toss him a kibble just for running nearby with all his paws on the ground (before he gets a chance to jump up)... however, do you think that we would have to worry about bloat due to his consuming food (even little bits) while doing intense exercise? (I'll ask our vet too, but all input appreciated!)
Thank you so much!