A few years ago I developed a simple protocol for dogs who are “hyper greeters.”
Hyper greeters are not just friendly and enthusiastic dogs. They are dogs who show an extreme lack of impulse control in the presence of people, and as a result they get in a lot of trouble! They inadvertently hurt people, get yelled at a lot, and over time develop worse and worse behavior when they approach.
And while it often looks happy, if you look closely you’ll see plenty of anxiety mixed in with their frantic approach. These dogs are out of control and not happy at all.
If this sounds like your dog, take a look at this video. Maybe it will help.
A word of warning…this solution is absolutely not appropriate for dogs who approach extremely fast out of fear rather than out of excitement. If you have a dog who approaches fast and enthusiastically right up into someone’s face and then backs up woowoo’ing, you have a different issue. This is not the solution for you and indeed, could well make the matter worse.
Give it a shot!
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Absolutely love this technique and will be trying off with my own hypergreeting clients. Thanks!
What a wonderful protocol! Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful trading methods.
Thanks for posting this! It makes so much sense. I’m looking forward to using this on my next hyper greeting client.
Great video. Any chance you will be doing one on the “other” kind of dog you mentioned, the run forward and back away kind? That is the kind of dog I have and people are ALWAYS trying to give him food to lure him forward and I know this is not correct. I usually don’t let my dog even get into these situations but sometimes they happen….
If I had a simple protocol for you I would help you but that problem is endlessly more complicated. I think you are wise not to get yourself in those situations, and if somebody is desperate to give your dog a cookie, encourage them to throw it at your dog instead, and they can play cookie catch. That keeps your dog back while your dog gathers information about the person, and therefore feels safer.
Denise, this is a fantastic Video, you mention when the dog ‘re-orients’ on the owner. Does that mean when they focus on the owner as opposed to the visitor? Will definitely be trying this
Yes, when the dog makes eye contact with the handler as opposed to the visitor. ! I hope it works well for you.
Thanks so much for this, Denise.. So deceptively simple, and so very effective. And helps to keep the owner calm, because they have specific job to do, and get reinforced for doing it by the dog’s choice to pay attention to them. Brilliant. Thank you again.
I really like this! My pup is now 2, and can stay 4 on the floor with most people, but with my 3 year old grand daughter, who’s face is at my dogs eye-level, she will jump up and knock her over and lick her face! Ideas for this problem?
the trick is going to be an alternative behavior for your dog BEFORE the mischief! Maybe an obedience cue (sit!) or eating off the floor (sprinkle cheerios on the ground before child is close), crate dog until child is in and seated and let dog out, etc. Think – what happens in the seconds before the incidents occur and make a change there!
Thank you Denise. I’ve tried this with a couple of students this week and we were all amazed and delighted at the initial results.
Fantastic! Thank you for letting me know.