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Saturday, July 26, 2014

Jumping Up. Part VI. From The Mail Bag

From The Mail Bag
I have a male Pom, 1 1/2 yrs. old. When I get home from work, it's non-stop barking and jumping for at least 15 minutes. I've tried ignoring him, doesn't work, tried telling him no, tried to distract him with treats, nothing works. I have scratches on my arms and it's difficult to get down on all fours in my good clothes. Even acts the same way when I feed the horses, he can see me through the gate and knows this is a daily routine. He isn't neutered yet, but will be soon. The other 2 dogs I have don't acts this way, one is 4 and one is 3. Is this something he will outgrow or am I doing something wrong?! 

I'm sorry your pup is having trouble. The first thing I would do is set up a video camera or web cam to see how your dog is acting when you are gone.  Sometimes over the top behavior upon the guardian's return can be related to separation anxiety.

If separation anxiety or separation distress is ruled out, I'd continue to work on the management, impulse control, and behavior modification techniques mentioned in the jumping up series - i.e. baby gates, doggie zen, reward 4 on the floor, etc.. You could also keep some sweat pants and a sweat shirt in the vehicle, and put those on top of your work clothes before entering the residence.

Sometimes behavior modification can take a while. But if none of it seems to help, I'd start a program of relaxation and stress reduction
And I'd try to make sure that the pup gets plenty of mental stimulation - trick training (using only positive reinforcement), scent games, food puzzles, etc..

If none of the above helps at all and if you sure are aren't reinforcing the behavior, it's probably time to consult a board certified vet behaviorist

I suggest no punishment at all.

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