I recently had a call from a lady that had a caller to her house claiming to represent the electric  company. Her dog barked and as she open the door the dog ran out. The man pushed the lady into the house, closing the door. Now the dog was outside and the man and lady inside. The lady was robbed and is now a very nervous person.

My advice to pet owners is to always have a leash by the door and when it is a stranger at the door to put the dog on a leash. Still use the stay or place if you can but have it on the leash. In this way if the dog does go
through the door the stranger cannot come in and shut the door behind them and also they do not have a strong enough communication from the dog to know whether it is friendly or not. I have told many ladies this one, pet owners who cannot keep their dog on a sit unless it is on a leash. The leash means – training. And the sight of the dog on the leash (which can always be released), is a bigger deterrent than one that is loose and comes out to
greet anyone. Most dogs will greet after the initial barking.

My first training with a dog in the home is to sit at the door, to sit in a place and not run through the door. This was shown on Channel 5 recently. Owners should  train their dogs to have good door manners I always recommend a leash at the door anyway and a place to sit close to it.

I also teach dogs to smile and growl with pleasure on command, this is a  perfect deterrent.
If your dog Barks at “intruders” i.e. mailman, delivery people. Try adding a command to “watch em” while the dog barks. Reward her for barking. (these people usually leave anyway, but the dog will assume it shooed them away)
Let the dog bark a few times then give a NO! command and reward the dog when it ceases barking. After a while you should be able to give the command before the dog barks and then you may begin teaching the “watch em” outside using a decoy person who will beat a hasty retreat as the dog barks at them. Your decoy should not be someone that the dog knows. The retreat will build her confidence as she will have “chased” the bad guy away.

Of course this all sounds easy but it is vital to get your voice and timing right.
A good school will be able to help you with this. Remember though,  a bad trainer is worse that an untrained dog.

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