Charging the door

Jan HertzschJan Hertzsch Falls Church VAPosts: 12Member
edited 10 April, 2011 in Behavior & Training
China charges the door, growls, barks aggressively whenever someone comes to the porch. She seems so single track on getting out (if the guest is there) or confronting (if already in) that we don't seem to impact her consciousness. We found a clicker got through for a while. I believe her previous owner used it as punishment training but will never know. She never bites (yet, of course) but this is unacceptable behavior. How would you handle this? Thanks Mr. Jan


  • Nicole MoyenNicole Moyen Calgary, AlbertaPosts: 973Member
    edited 8 April, 2011
    Can you anticipate when someone\'s coming and put China in a different room or crate her? Maybe have a stuffed Kong or special bone on hand just for these occasions? Then after guests have been inside for a while see if she\'d like to come out and greet calmly. If she still charges out of the room or crate, just put her back inside with her treat and let her relax. It sounds like she gets pretty excited/stressed not to be able to listen to you, so maybe it\'s too much for her to handle visitors right now.
  • Jan HertzschJan Hertzsch Falls Church VAPosts: 12Member
    edited 8 April, 2011
    We have had her for three years now. We have restrained her until she gets calmed down. That does not really solve the problem though. Her behavior is not acceptable.
  • Nicole MoyenNicole Moyen Calgary, AlbertaPosts: 973Member
    edited 8 April, 2011
    Sorry, the way you referenced her previous owners it sounded like she was fairly new to your home. Is she okay with meeting people outside your home? At dog parks? Is it the people she's reacting to or the sound of the doorbell? Does she seem comfortable with guests once they're in the house, sitting down? If she's been practicing this behavior for 3 years, it will probably take a while to create a new response. But you need to find out if her trigger is the sound of the doorbell or knocking (and then work to condition her to respond differently to that trigger) or if it involves a fear of people in general, or a territorial response.
  • edited 8 April, 2011
    You have an undesirable behaviour: charging the door. Replace it with a more desired response..sitting calmly. Practice with friends/family. Have someone come to the porch & then have China sit. Mark/reward. Repeat, repeat, repeat. You want to form a positive association with folks coming to the door. "Person on porch = yummy treat if I sit" I'm a bit confused by your statement that you tried a clicker for a bit, but thought previous owners had used it as a punishment. Can you elaborate a bit on that?
  • Jan HertzschJan Hertzsch Falls Church VAPosts: 12Member
    edited 9 April, 2011
    As Re clickers: When we took her to obedience training, she would flinch every time we used the clicker. Certainly not a reward response. We stopped using it immediately. She was charging the door once and I had the clicker close. When I clicked it, she immediately lost all interest in the door and carefully watched me. As always, once she calmed down, she was fine. This is a display, not an actual threat. Thanks
  • edited 9 April, 2011
    Try having a high value treat next to the door that you can liberally sprinkle on the floor for him to scarf up whenever people come by.
  • Mike JacobsenMike Jacobsen Posts: 53Member
    edited 10 April, 2011
    We adopted Sam, a Miniature Schnauzer, from a previous owner who had taken him for some professional training. He was about a year old when he joined us. A very smart and interesting dog. He often took his cues from us, particularly non-verbals. So he would charge and bark when someone came to the door. We would say "Sam. That's enough" if that was what we decided, based on the visitor. If we said "Sam ....," he would instantly stop barking but still charge. And then sit there and look at the visitor. When we gave cues that the visitor was OK, Sam would step forward, sit, **** his head, and clearly wait to be acknowledged by the visitor. And then when the acknowledged him, they were his friend, clearly his friend, for the entire visit. He was very consistent. Even when we had to encourage them to acknowledge, if they did, they were clearly his friend. On the rare ocassion that they didn't, he went to one of us for the acknowledgement and then he was OK. On the rare occasion that we did not say "Sam ...." he continued the charge to the door and sounded like he was going to go through the door. They left. I won't tell you about what happened with squirrels or the rare mouse or even about the "stray" Doberman Pinscher that dared to walk on Sam's property while Sam was outside with us, unleashed. The Doberman left, quickly, but Sam, in the encounter, simply stopped at the property line. Sam very clearly knew the boundaries of our property lines even though we don't ever remember pointing them out to him. Dogs can be amazing.
Sign In or Register to comment.

Welcome to the new Dogster Community!

Introduce the community to your pet with our Pet Profiles and discover how to use the new community with our Getting Started pages!

Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!