Do you find you put your dog away when guests come over, to avoid your dog’s unruly behavior? If so, STOP; the Dog Training Tips I am going to share with you will help to Teach Your Dog Door Manners. A dog bolting out the door can be a scary thing. However, the techniques myself Ryan Matthews going to share with you should give you the confidence to leave your door wide open with your dog waiting at the door and not bolting out. The big picture is to claim space. Essentially, the doorway and the area by it is your personal bubble. This concept may be hard to grasp via the written text. If you prefer to see a visual demonstration of how to claim the doorway as your, I have a “Door Manners” eCourse
(https://www.worldofdogtraining.com/), where you will see numerous dogs learning door manners for the very first time!
Bolting/Door Manners: With bolting, the most important thing is positioning which should be done in the order of door, person, dog. Because the dog will want to have its nose at the opening of the door, which is “advantage dog,” and we want “advantage human,” I am going to teach you a way to sweep the dog back. This can be achieved through body language alone, with no commands or talking to the dog. I have witnessed people speak full paragraphs to their dog, instructing them to get back from the door, which is totally ineffective. To do this without words, position yourself between the dog and the door. You may want to say “sit,” but ninety percent of the time you can achieve good door manners by visualizing what you want the dog to do and then stepping into the dog, sliding its paws back with your toes. When you do this, it will reverse away from the door. There is no grabbing of the collar, and it is done with the least amount of effort possible, using my toes to nudge the paws in a simple, calm approach that will naturally result in the dog backing up. Once the paws have been encouraged to reverse, I then walk towards the dog without any contact, and the dog will be compliant as it moves back away from the door. Once far enough away from the door, approximately five feet, then command the dog to first “sit,” then “stay. Crack the door an inch, and then pause and observe if the dog will break before you open it all the way. If the dog breaks the sit/stay, then step towards it and reiterate what you want “sit/stay.” Open the door further and further as you observe the stay. You will witness this demonstrated in World Of Dog Training eCourse “Door Manners.”
The most common issue with door manners is jumping up on someone when they arrive. A lot of a dog’s bad behavior is conditioned by our guests as they enter the home. This is because they often enter and address the dog before they even say “hi” to you, and lose focus on who they are there to see. The best way to handle this without seeming rude is to tell your guest that your dog is being trained and ask them to ignore the pet. I’m not saying that guests can’t interact with the dog at all, in fact, it’s good for them to do so. You want them to wait until the dog is calm, for your sanity and their safety. Once you have your dog trained, tell the dog to “place” and it will instinctively go to where it is allowed to wait for guests to enter. It is important to have trained this command through practice with members of your family acting as guests, so you can go through drills where the dog repeats the action of going on the place. Some common “places” for door manners are stairs near the entry, a dog bed or cot, and furniture such as an ottoman where the dog is allowed.
Dogs will instinctively want to bark when people come to your door. I personally feel that some barking can be a great deterrent for potential intruders, and is the dog performing the job of warning you that someone is around. You don’t want to discourage your dog from being great security, but will want to stop excessive barking. I allow five barks, or about ten seconds, before stopping it. How long to allow your dog to bark is personal preference and circumstantial. I have a good sense of who is at the door and what’s going on around me more quickly and don’t need the extended warning, nor do I want to disrupt neighbors in my condo. If you don’t have the ability to see through your door right away or don’t have neighbors to be concerned about, you may want to allow the barking until you have identified that the guest is safe.