How to Greet a Person (or, How to Get My Dog Not To Jump)

Pet Camp’s Canine Enrichment Team gets all sorts of dog behavior questions from pet parents. While some of the questions are very dog specific, there are some that get asked repeatedly. Among them is “How do I get my dog not to jump on people?” Here are some quick tips:

Don’t Encourage it!

As silly as this seems, it happens all the time. Pet parents encourage their dog to jump on them, and then get upset when their dog does the same thing to someone else. If you don’t want your dog to jump on others, work on that behavior by not allowing them to jump on you.

Get Yourself and Your Dog Ready

Plan ahead. If you are out walking your dog and your dog is a jumper, keep an eye out for when you might come into contact with someone else. If the issue is when someone comes into your house, be ready for the doorbell to ring (maybe for a while encourage friends to call before ringing the bell so you are ready).

Most importantly, get your dog ready. Establish a routine for your dog to follow before greeting people at your home. Have a treat ready and have your dog sit in your house before allowing them to greet guests; perhaps give a treat to your guest(s) and have them ask your dog to sit as well. Create something for your dog that is more rewarding than jumping on your guests.

If out on a leash walk, as always, have a treat or reward handy and ask your dog to do something else first. Ask your dog to sit or lay down – get your dog to focus on you and the reward you’re about to provide. When your dog is focused on you, you can reward and release – but do not let your dog then jump. Keep a treat on the ready so that you can re-steady your dog.


Like everything with dogs, it takes time and practice. It might be hard to find a friend willing to volunteer to work with you (few people really like being jumped on by a dog), but if you stop encouraging your dog to jump on you, enforce the no jumping rule every time, and reward for the good behavior you seek – you’ll be starting down the road to good dog behavior.
If you have any questions about your dog’s behavior or need help working with your dog on some behavioral issues, give Pet Camp’s Canine Enrichment team a call: 415.282.0700.
Thanks for reading.

If you are a San Francisco Bay Area pet parent with questions about your dog or cat’s behavior, give us a call!  Since 1997 Pet Camp has been providing San Francisco’s best overnight care for dogs and cats, doggie day care, and dog training.