Your dog loves to say hello when friends and family come to visit. He barks, leaps up on people, gets under their feet, or gives them big sloppy kisses.
There may be some embarrassing moments, such as inappropriate sniffing, or a tampon pilfered from someone’s purse and used as a chew toy. Or maybe your dog doesn’t like visitors at all, and responds with growling, fear or even aggression. Either way, he’s not as well-behaved around guests as you’d like him to be. By understanding your dog’s mindset, you can help ensure he’ll observe proper “petiquette” during the holidays, or any other time visitors are expected. “A goal is to make yourself, your guests and your environment ‘boring’,” says renowned positive trainer Victoria Stilwell. “If the dog feels it’s no big deal when someone new comes through the door and sits on his favorite couch, or when there are a lot of people around the dining room table, he won’t feel a need to respond.”
The key to a dog that behaves well with guests is to plan ahead, she adds. “Work well in advance on your dog’s greeting behavior, and get him used to seeing new people in the house.”
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