Dog door etiquette

Hello dog lovers.

Does your dog misbehave at the door? Are you embarrassed when visitors stop by? Do you feel totally out of control with the whole situation?

  Fear not. There is hope . It is not complicated , but it will take work and consistency on your part.

  The first step is to teach your best friend to sit when going in or out of all doors in your house. Starting as young as possible is a great advantage. You will have to do this dozens of  times and then hundreds of times and then thousands of times. I only said this is the first step. I never said it would ever end. Any thing you teach your dog will have to be reinforced for the rest of his or her life. Think….little child.

   You will need to use a command to get your dog to sit. I Recommend “sit”. Any word will work. You can even say “rainbow” or ” bowl of beans”, but that seems silly to me. But that’s just me.

  Once your dog has learned to sit make them do it every time you go in and out the door.  You must do it when it is raining and when you are in a hurry and when you have on nice clothes. You cannot take no for an answer.

  When they have begun to learn that this ritual is just part of life , then you can go to the next step.

Step two is how do you tell them it’s time to go through the door? This is important because they can’t sit there forever , and you must be the one to decide when it happens.

  Another command is needed. I recommend “let’s go” or ” ok”. Once again you can use ” rainbow” or bowl of beans” as long as you say the same thing every time.

  Step three is eye contact. You will notice that after pooch has gotten the idea that sitting must happen , and you will decide when is time to go through the door with the command , your doggy may be a little over anxious to get in or out. Nudging forward instead of calmly waiting may occur, or whining with impatience are signs that you still don’t have total control. Your friend still wants to make part of the decision.

  To get control is simple , but requires continued consistency and concentration on your part.

  Once you have reached the door and your dog is sitting and waiting for your command do nothing. Wait until he or she looks up at you. That is the moment when you give what I call the release command. { “ok” , “let’s go” } or whatever you choose. At first your dog may have trouble figuring this out. The more they do the eye contact they more they come to realize that this is how it works. It helps you both to connect , and since   dogs are very visual animals they will become calmer. They are capable of multitasking . They can still be excited about what’s on the other side of the door , while focusing on you for the signal.

  If you do this every time you enter or leave the house then it will become automatic especially as your dogs becomes more mature and you learn to read each other better.

  Its not complicated , it just takes a lot of work , and you must keep it up for as long as you know each other. If you get lazy and let things slide a little too often they see that as a sign that they can take over and make the decisions.


  That’s just the human nature of male dogs.


Lucky old man




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