Humane Dog Training – Book Giveaway!

We are giving away a copy of Training Your Dog the Humane Way: Simple Teaching Tips for Resolving Problem Behaviors & Raising a Happy Dog by Alana Stevenson. Read this excerpt and leave a comment below for your chance to win the book!

Calming Body Language

Humans tend to use intense body language when interacting with other animals. As primates, we reach in front of us to grab and touch objects, and we face individuals directly. Direct frontal body language can frighten and inhibit many dogs. It can also intensify anxiety and aggression, increase mouthiness, and cause a dog to jump on you. By being cognizant of your body language and modifying it around dogs, you can help them be more relaxed and comfortable with you.

Angle yourself slightly when interacting with dogs, as opposed to facing them directly or leaning over them. Stand or kneel next to or parallel to them, or at a perpendicular angle to them. Pet your dog under his chin and on his chest. Try not to face him directly as you pet him or to pet him on his head.

When he approaches, sniffs, or kisses you, avert your gaze slightly for a moment. Your dog will find this a friendly gesture. If he gets too excited around you, turn your back on him and cease all eye contact. Only pay attention to him when he calms down.

Preventing and Resolving Jumping

Memorize this statement: “Life happens on all fours.” Give your dog all the attention he desires and deserves, but only do so when he has all four paws on the ground. Try to catch and reward these behaviors (such as standing, sitting, and lying down) before your dog feels it is in his best interest to jump. If he needs to show you that he is sitting by jumping on you first to get your attention, you will end up reinforcing the jumping — not sitting.

If your dog jumps on you, pivot away from him and end all eye contact. You may have to do this a few times before he calms down. When he is on all fours again, give him attention, eye contact, or whatever else he is wanting. If you have something that your dog wants, and he jumps on you, remove the item or turn away from him. When he is on all fours again, offer him the item.

Use this same approach when sitting on sofas or chairs. The instant your dog jumps on you, end eye contact and pivot your legs away from him. Give him attention when he is back on all fours. Do not give him attention too quickly after he jumps. Wait at least three to five seconds before you are seated, stand up and turn your back to him. Withdraw your attention until he calms down.

Excerpted from Training Your Dog the Humane Way: Simple Teaching Tips for Resolving Problem Behaviors & Raising a Happy Dog by Alana Stevenson. Published by New World Library.

WIN THE BOOK! Enter a comment below and you will automatically be entered to win a copy of Training Your Dog the Humane Way by Alana Stevenson! Winner will be announced on August 23. Good Luck!


Gloria W.

Thanks to everyone who entered!


Jenny H.
Past Member 1 years ago

Cheers! You have really allured me; I have no words to explain my feelings about your post.

Judith s.
Judith stuart5 years ago

Looks like a very interesting and useful book to have, especially to a doggy person who is willing to learn from it. Thank you!

Laura R.
Laura R5 years ago

this sounds so interesting!
I think we did something wrong with our dog, he just can't listen as well...

Donna Hamilton
Donna Hamilton5 years ago

Thanks for the info.

Joy Jensen
Joy Jensen5 years ago

My family is my husband, teenage son, 4 yr old Jack Russell Terrier Max and myself. We live in beautiful Oregon state. We recently rescued an adorable puppy from a high kill shelter in Texas. We were told he was 11 months old and a Jack Russell Terrier. When he got here he was obviously NOT 11 months old but 2 months old and while he may have some Jack Russell in his lineage he also has some Lab or Heeler or some other larger breed because he is 4 months old now and getting bigger by the minute!! Jumping is a MAJOR issue right now. He is so lovable and loves meeting people but the jumping is unacceptable. What I have read so far seems like very doable and very humane. I'm certainly going to incorporate it into the daily routine and hope it works! I would LOVE to win the book but even if I don't win the book I am definitely going to read this book. Thanks for writing it!

Deanna M.
Deanna Miller5 years ago

I have two dogs that don't seem to want to listen...
Praobably because I do not know how to train them,

Becky Bingham
Becky Bingham6 years ago

I will try to interpret this info to my verbal training. I am alone with rocky about 75% of the time and I talk to him like he's a human being - I also did this with JD by beloved 1st dog who lived to be almost 16 before we had to say goodbye for now. my boy is smart and may not understand every word but seems to know when it is important to me and his daily happy life in our home.

Tim Cheung
Tim C6 years ago


Michele Wilkinson

Very interesting article.
Thank you

Anna Leontine O.
Anna Leontine O.6 years ago