Ask the Trainer with Alana Stevenson

Dog and Cat Behaviorist, Humane Dog Trainer, Boston

QuestionWe got our dog, Jingles, neutered as soon as he was old enough. He’s a rambunctious, friendly retriever. Actually, he is a bit too friendly. Even though he’s neutered, he still tries to hump everything in sight. Is there something we can do to stop this?

AnswerSometimes, if a dog lacks exercise, is overly bored, or is frequently punished, he will show obsessive humping or mounting behaviors. Some dogs learn this behavior from watching other dogs, and they will mount or hump a dog to get that dog’s attention or to elicit a chase.

Give Jingles “timeouts.” Put a leash on him and let it dangle behind him. Do not hold onto it. The moment Jingles begins to hump or mount, say “ah-ah” or “nope.” Take the leash, shorten it and walk Jingles away from what he wanted to hump or mount. Ignore him while you do this. Wait until he calms down then drop the leash and let him do what he wants. If he tries to hump or mount again, repeat this technique until he stops when he hears you say “ah-ah” or your “no” marker. When he does, reward him. The leash removal technique can be used both indoors and outdoors. Teach him alternate behaviors, exercise him and give him fun chews or toys when guests are over.

Alana StevensonAbout the Trainer:

Alana Stevenson is a professional dog and cat Behaviorist and a humane Dog Trainer. She is the author of The Right Way the First Time and Training Your Dog the Humane Way. She uses a non-violent and compassionate approach when working with animals and resolving behavior problems. She can be reached through her website but also consults nationwide by telephone and Skype.

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