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How to Stop a Dog from Jumping On You

Woman walking on beach with dog jumping up at her

Arguably, puppies jumping up at you is among the top five cutest things in the world. It’s true for small dogs, but when a 50-pound canine is jumping on you, it can feel significantly less cute. This behavior can soon cause problems for a parent who owns a large dog breed. Here’s everything that you need to know about why jogs jump at you and how to control this habit.

Why Do Dogs Jump on You?

The main reason why dogs jump is the appreciation they get from humans. Over the years, we have encouraged this behavior a lot and now almost every canine does it. Some other reasons of dog jumping are discussed below.

Natural Way of Greeting

Woman being greeted in yard by jumping dog

Dogs greet each other by licking faces. This polite behavior is common among wolves as wolf pups lick the grownup’s muzzles to make them regurgitate food. Given that dogs descended from wolves, this behavior is also common among them. Domestic dogs rarely nourish their pups this way, but the muzzle-licking behavior is still a common sight.

Humans don’t have a muzzle, but our furry friends still try to jump up and lick our faces. Over the years, we had loved it so much that this behavior gets rewarded most of the time. 

Attention Seeking

Jack Russell Terrier jumping up at man's face while man is doing pushups

The tendency of canines to jump has been strengthened by our behavior. Usually, when a dog jumps up at you, he/she is looking for attention. Most parents cave into this negative attention and pups quickly learn that jumping is fun and rewarding. Whether knowingly or unknowingly, we reinforce this behavior because it’s fun and rewarding for us too.


If your pooch is excited about something, there’s every possibility that he/she will try jumping on you. One of the things that make dogs more excited is the arrival of guests. Canines express their excitement in several different ways.

Some of them may start pacing around the house in excitement while others get jumpy. Some less energetic dogs will simply go to play with their toys. Certain breeds tend to have far more energy than others. These pups need regular exercise to keep their excitement levels under control.

How to Stop a Large Dog from Jumping on You

Woman holding stick out of a jumping dogs grasp on a beach

If you have a large dog, his/her jumping on you can cause a lot of problems. For instance, he/she can unintentionally injure you or damage the things around you. Continue reading to find out how you can to discourage this negative behavior.

Withhold Attention

You should try to discourage your dog’s attention-seeking habits. When your dog starts barking excessively for no obvious reason, try to ignore him/her. The more you cave into such attention-seeking behaviors, the more your dog will be encouraged to do them.

Likewise, turn your back on him/her as soon as your pup jumps up. You can also cross your arms to suggest that there is no reason to jump up. It does take time but your pet will slowly learn that he/she will not get any attention by jumping.

Reward Good Behavior

Brown and white dog receiving a treat

Treats are a surefire way of developing good behavior in your dog. The best method to encourage your pooch to behave well is to give him/her treats on every good action. Whenever your dog is excited and doesn’t jump on you, reward him/her with a treat. This type of behavior modification also takes some time but can yield extraordinary results.

Similarly, you must praise your dog (for good behavior) but keep things low key. Too much excitement and attention from you may stimulate another round of jumping.

How to Stop a Small Dog from Jumping on You?

Small dogs jumping at you is much safer than a massive dog tackling you. However, even if your small dog keeps jumping on you, it can quickly become annoying. The following are some of the most common ways to curb this behavior.

Give Your Dog Something to Carry in the Mouth

Black furry dog running down path with stick in its mouth

For some dogs, simply holding something in their mouth during a greeting sequence is enough to discourage jumping. Other canines prefer to chew toys, balls, or treats.

Dog puzzles are also a great way to distract your small dog. Dog food puzzles are ideal for such scenarios because they entice the pooch to solve them. Keep them near the door and give one to your pooch whenever guests arrive.

Put Your Dog on a Leash

yellow labrador retriever on leash at owners feet

You can use a leash to restrict the movement of your dog. It is quite a convenient method for small dogs because they are easier to control on a leash. Clip a leash on your canine, preferably to a front-clip harness or head halter, so that the pup cannot greet if he/she jumps.

You can also combine this technique with some basic voice commands. This makes it incredibly easy to control your pet, but the training phase will require a lot of patience. Again, encourage good behavior by giving treats whenever your pet obeys you. Over time, your dog will learn to stop jumping on you.

Slowly cut down on treats until your dog starts to behave well without them. If you go for this method, it is a good idea to keep some treats and a leash near the door. This is because dogs get excited every time someone comes over. In this way, you’ll have all the necessary tools (to train and control the pet) within your vicinity.

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