A dog stands up on its owner, demonstrating successful dog training with treats.

How Do I Train My Dog to Behave Around Guests?

Having a dog can bring so much joy and love into our lives. However, when it comes to having guests over, things can get a little chaotic with an untrained dog. It's common for dogs to become overly excited or even exhibit unwanted behaviors such as jumping, begging, or being aggressive towards guests. 

With the holiday season upon us, it's the perfect time to start training your dog and ensure that they have polite paws when guests come over. 

Let’s discuss how to train your dog to behave around guests and make everyone's experience in your home more enjoyable.

Dog Training: Understanding the Reasons Behind Your Dog’s Inappropriate Behaviors 

Understanding your dog's inappropriate behaviors is crucial to addressing and correcting them effectively. Dogs may exhibit unwanted behaviors such as: 

  • Jumping 
  • Begging 
  • Aggression towards guests
  • House accidents
  • Chewing household items 
  • Whining  

This can occur due to a variety of reasons. These could include a lack of proper dog obedience training, past negative experiences, fear or anxiety, or simply a lack of understanding of appropriate behavior. 

To better understand and address these behaviors, it’s beneficial to seek professional guidance through dog training classes. Taking the time to understand the underlying reasons behind your dog's behavior will allow you to implement the most appropriate training techniques. This will create a more harmonious environment for both your dog and your guests.

How to Train a Dog 

While utilizing dog training and obedience classes is helpful, there are also some things you can work on at home with your beloved pup. Here are some helpful tips on how to train a dog on some of the most common behavioral issues. 

Jumping 

Jumping on guests can be a common and frustrating behavior in dogs. To prevent this, it's important to work on dog obedience training and teach them alternative behaviors. Some effective techniques are: 

  • Teach your dog to sit and stay when guests arrive 
  • Practice this command in a calm environment first 
  • Gradually increase distractions while practicing the sit-and-stay 
  • Reinforce positive behaviors with treats and praise 
  • When jumping, redirect their attention with treats 

With consistency and patience, you can prevent your dog from jumping on guests and create a more pleasant environment for everyone.

Begging 

Begging habits during meals can be a nuisance and can also be detrimental to your dog's health. To discourage this behavior, it's important to reinforce their dog obedience training. 

  • Create a designated space for your dog during mealtime 
  • Invest in a dog bed or a crate and utilize this during mealtimes 
  • Reward them with treats or toys for staying in their designated space while you eat. 

Again, consistency is key. If you're having trouble, consider enrolling in dog training classes to get professional guidance and support.

Aggressiveness 

Dealing with aggressiveness towards visitors is a concerning behavior in dogs. It's important to address this issue swiftly through proper dog obedience training. If you have an aggressive dog, professional training courses are a must. In the meantime, start here. 

  • Work to identify any triggers that may be causing your dog's aggressive behavior
  • Become aware of when your dog is feeling fear or anxiety
  • Work on distractions and reassurances when you notice fear or anxiety in your dog  

Working with a professional dog trainer can help you develop a personalized training plan to address this issue. This may involve desensitization exercises, teaching your dog alternative behaviors, and providing them with positive reinforcement for calm and appropriate behavior. 

Minimizing Inappropriate Behaviors 

Now that we've covered some specific behaviors to address, let's talk about some general strategies to minimize any unwanted behaviors your dog may exhibit around guests. 

  1. Make sure your dog gets plenty of exercise before guests arrive. A tired dog is usually a well-behaved dog. 
  2. Create a designated "safe space" for your dog to go when they need a break from all the excitement. This could be a specific room or a crate with their favorite toys and blankets. 
  3. Provide plenty of mental stimulation for your dog, such as puzzle toys or long lasting chews, to keep their mind occupied and prevent boredom-induced misbehavior. 

By implementing these strategies, you can help ensure that your dog remains calm and well-behaved during your social gatherings and over the holidays.

For more helpful tips and tricks on caring for your beloved dog(s), look to Get Joy. We are here to help you and your furry family members coexist peacefully and joyfully.