Help for Jumpy/Mouthy
Strategies to address jumpy/mouthy behavior in a shelter environment.
WHAT IS JUMPY/MOUTHY BEHAVIOR?
Jumpy/mouthy dogs are often social dogs who jump up and/or grab people’s bodies or clothing with their mouths when frustrated or excited. They may also bite and tug carried objects like leashes or harnesses. If not addressed it can become severe enough to cause injury.
WHY DO THEY DO IT?
A dog may be jumpy/mouthy for several reasons, including:
He’s young and untrained
He’s excited or anxious in new surroundings
People have previously reinforced the behavior by giving him attention when he does it
Ignoring the dog, or turning or walking away, are not always enough on their own to decrease jumpy/mouthy behavior.
HOW TO FIX IT
Set up the environment to prevent or reduce the problem behavior. This includes how you leash or harness a jumpy/mouthy dog, and how you behave around them.
If changing your handling practices isn’t enough, you’ll find training plans here designed just for jumpy/mouthy dogs.
Jumpy/mouthy behaviors can be worse in the shelter environment. If the dog is in a shelter,
sometimes the best management strategy is to get the dog into a foster home.