Dog sitting on feet...
DogForums.com is the premier dog Forum on the internet. Registered Users do not see the above ads.
+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 41

Thread: Dog sitting on feet...

  1. #1
    Senior Member Chicalen1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Weaverville NC
    Posts
    400

    Dog sitting on feet...

    Hi the trainer I had for class on Friday with Sofi said a dog sitting on you feet is a sign of disrespect. Has anyone else heard this? She also said that when a dog does something wrong you should put them in time out on a short leash attached to the wall or floor and ignore them for 1 or 2 min what are your opinions on this?

    Amanda
    Amanda

    A house is not a home with out a dog or two or more!

  2. Remove Advertisements
    DogForums.com
    Advertisements
     

  3. #2
    Senior Member Dogstar's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Posts
    4,072

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    It can be, in some ways- some dogs are *not* respectful of personal space. Others do it in certain situations because they are afraid, or have learned the behavior gets them rewards, or because they just don't have any body-awareness or concept of just how big they are (this last is most common in large breed puppies and teenagers).

    I really like leash tethering for timeouts, BUT, it doesn't work for every dog- for one thing, you've got to have a dog that respects a tether (some will injure themselves trying to get away from it) and a safe place to tether them. And for most people, well, there are easier ways to do time-outs- behind a baby gate, in an exercise pen, crated (under some circumtances- Indy's timeouts for picking on Mal are downstays in his crate with the door open) or just ignoring the dog entirely.

  4. #3
    Senior Member TooneyDogs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    4,423

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    A dog putting its paw or sitting on the feet is commonly interpreted as a sign of attempting to dominate. I don't subscribe to that theory. The entire body language needs to be looked at. A dog that is licking its lips, legs shaking with big eyes is obviously stressed and when it puts its paw on the owner I don't read that as an attempt to dominate...I read it as an attempt to seek some reassurance.
    Time-outs are appropriate for very specific situations and should never be used for everything the dog does wrong. Social isolation is a very powerful behavior modification method and needs to be used with care.
    In social isolation you want to make a specific change and after isolation you want to see a specific (new) behavior. Example: Dog is jumping on you. You walk out of the room leaving the dog entirely alone. When you return after a minute or two you want a new behavior such as a sit instead of the jumping.

  5. #4
    Super Moderator Kuma'sMom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    5,285

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    I'd also say it depends on the breed. Pugs for instance, are not happy unless they are physically touching you. It's just part of the breed's nature, and if you happen to be standing, they will either be leaning against your leg, or sitting on your feet! It's not a dominance thing with them, just their need to be close to their person. Kuma is always leaning against our legs, sitting on our feet, sticking his head through our legs, lol, and he has absolutely no issues with dominance.

  6. #5
    Senior Member cascabel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    252

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    I pretty much have to say that TooneyDogs summed up my thoughts on the sitting eloquently, so I won't add anything to that specifically.

    However, IMO I think this trainer sounds kind of cracked between this and the disrespect she showed you that was mentioned in your other post. There's nothing wrong with ditching a trainer if they aren't working out for you. I had to go through a few different trainers till I found one that worked well for me and the pup.

    For example, I asked a trainer for advice because I was having trouble teaching my pup to fetch a specific item on command. She wasn't 'getting it' with the normal methods and I was hoping for another approach. The trainer just told me that "Duh, she's a sheltie. They aren't designed to fetch." Okay, but that doesn't mean that I can't teach her. I mean shelties are champions when it comes to competitive obedience, which requires a fetch command!

    Sorry, I digress, but I just wanted to tell you it's okay to keep looking for 'right' trainer if this one isn't working out for you. It's not worth the stress on you (which will transfer to your dog) and you have no obligation to make it work with a trainer you aren't satisfied with. I learned this one the hard way.

  7. #6
    Senior Member battlemonkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    192

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    I have to agree with the idea that it is a sign of dominance from your dog. When dogs are dominant over others, some will generally put their heads on top of another ones back or whatnot, since your dog can't put his head over yours (obviously), then they have to put some part of their body over some part of yours. I've met alot of people who allow their dogs to do this, but not me.
    Jesse - Part of the Muttley Crew

  8. #7
    Senior Member Mdawn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    5,604

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    Uallis often sits (and steps) on my feet. He also leans against me. I don't think with him it has anything to do with dominance. He doesn't have a dominant bone in his body. When he sits on my feet, it's just where his butt lands when he sitting down to be petted or loved on. He sometimes will "slap" at me with a paw or something when he wants to go out and wants something in general. I ignore him when he does this because I don't want to encourage it because I'm afraid he could injure someone accidentally doing this. I will instead give him what he wants when he's sitting calmly. It's working well.

    As for tethering for a timeout; I've never done it personally. Uallis, I think, would be one of the dogs that would not understand and would end up injuring himself. He's never been tied out or tethered to anything but a leash before.

    The Dogs: Eddie the Lab & Uallis the Mastiff
    The Cats: Max, Gus & Lexi

  9. #8
    Senior Member ghosthunterbecki's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    340

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    I answered the "time out" question in your other thread (I appear to disagree with everybody else on the subject!) but I wanted to also address the "feet sitting" issue.

    Dozer has had this same problem. It's one of the things that were really getting to my DH and me, because I'm eight months pregnant, and I *need* to be able to move my feet about, put them up, and it's hard for me to stand up with a dog sitting directly on my feet.

    With Dozer I do feel that it was a sign of dominance/disrespect for our leadership, but there is a very specific reason *why*. Dozer was throwing himself against our shins whenever he laid down or sat against our feet. He wasn't simply sitting on them due to a lack of awareness of his own body, or a need to be close. He was using his body weight to "bully."

    We corrected this by telling him, "No. Dozer, Go." He knows what this means now, and on the occasion that he slips up and forgets that we don't like him on our feet, he moves. He no longer throws himself against our shins.

    Dogs *do* want to be close to their pack, however. I may be wrong about this, but I believe that in the wild, dogs sleep communally for warmth and comfort. Your dog may be seeking that same warmth and comfort of the pack with you. If this is the case, encouraging her to lay down *next* to you achieves the same result for the dog, without the inconvenience to the owner.

    Just my feelings, but this worked out well for us!

  10. #9
    Senior Member Mdawn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    5,604

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    My Lab, Eddie, doesn't really sit on my feet. He'll sit in front of me or beside me when he wants attention or whatever. However, I think that I know what ghosthunterbecki is talking about in a way. Eddie used to use his body in a bully manner. He would purposely run straight into people or lean against me in a pushy way. Almost like he was trying to push me away and take the space. With him, I really think it was a dominance issue. I'd just stand up and crowd him back. Eventually, he backed off. I don't know if that was the right way to go about it though. He doesn't do it very much anymore though.

    The Dogs: Eddie the Lab & Uallis the Mastiff
    The Cats: Max, Gus & Lexi

  11. #10
    Senior Member ghosthunterbecki's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    340

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mdawn View Post
    My Lab, Eddie, doesn't really sit on my feet. He'll sit in front of me or beside me when he wants attention or whatever. However, I think that I know what ghosthunterbecki is talking about in a way. Eddie used to use his body in a bully manner. He would purposely run straight into people or lean against me in a pushy way. Almost like he was trying to push me away and take the space. With him, I really think it was a dominance issue. I'd just stand up and crowd him back. Eventually, he backed off. I don't know if that was the right way to go about it though. He doesn't do it very much anymore though.
    I really like having a command to get him to back off, because sometimes I think that he does it without realizing what he's doing. Though in Dozer's case, he's still very much a puppy and learning his boundaries and what the rules are. And of course, sometimes he tests us to make sure that he knows what he thinks he knows!

    Dominance is not, in my experience, something that is easy to deal with, but it is *so* very much worth the work in my opinion. Dozer's always been a great dog, but he and we are much happier because we worked with him on these commands.

    Obedience training (including things like these additional commands) also really helps to boost a dog's confidence, in my opinion making them much better pets in the long run!

  12. #11
    Senior Member Mudra's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Edmonton, AB
    Posts
    3,015

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    My dogs are usually laying down on my feet when I'm working on the computer. Is that disrespectful when they try to be close to you? =(

  13. #12
    Senior Member ghosthunterbecki's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    340

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mudra View Post
    My dogs are usually laying down on my feet when I'm working on the computer. Is that disrespectful when they try to be close to you? =(
    Personally, I don't think so. But I also didn't have the impression that we were talking about a desire from the animal to be *close* to us, as their pack.

    I believe that one needs to look at the animal as an individual in this case rather than generalize that laying down on the feet or near the feet is disrespectful.

  14. #13
    Senior Member Dogstar's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Posts
    4,072

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    It's not so much about being close to you as it is to impedin your personal space and then ignoring it when you go to try and move.... :P

  15. #14
    Senior Member Inga's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    somewhere over the rainbow
    Posts
    12,007

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    LOL I hear you Dogstar. I have a male that has some real issues with personal space. He is incredibly submissive to most folks but he knows "dog people" and people with less experience. He gets rather obnoxious with the latter. He will push around on me during play but he is not the pushy guy all the time.


    “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” Gandhi

  16. #15
    Senior Member ghosthunterbecki's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    340

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dogstar View Post
    It's not so much about being close to you as it is to impedin your personal space and then ignoring it when you go to try and move.... :P
    Yes! That's what Dozer did -- he wouldn't allow me to get up or move my feet. That's where the real problem lay, for us. Now that we have that worked out, we are all a *lot* happier for it. I don't mind if he sits down at or on my feet because he *moves* now when I need to get up or stretch!

  17. #16
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    2,895

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    I have Kramer that loves to sit and lean on me and I let him, I have had other dogs that would throw their shoulder right into you, lean on you and attempt to sit on you. That was not allowed because it to me was dominating but with Kramer when I say go he moves to his own spot. It to me depends on the dog and if you train your dog to place when you give the command, its ok to visit up close.

  18. #17
    Super Moderator Curbside Prophet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Elsa's House
    Posts
    12,744

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    Dominance theroy IMO offers zero descriptive, explanatory, or predictive value in the human-dog relationship. Any trainer that suggests oh, it's a dominance thing, has minimal or no understanding of learning theory.

    Chris Bach puts it very eloquently in her book "The Third Way" when she explains how many dogs learn to work around ineffective owners (no assumptions made of you), in order to satisfy their appetitive requirements. She explains how these dogs are often perceived to be "dominant" when in fact they simply learned through operant conditioning to manipulate their environment appropriately in order to gain satisfaction.

    We should expect animals to maximize reinforcers and minimize punishments. Learning theory accounts for this behavior clearly and concisely, offering extremely high descriptive, explanatory, and predictive value, where dominance theory does not.

    Beyond that, learning theory offers a clear set of principles for treating the problem, by positively reinforcing behaviors one wants, and not reinforcing behaviors we don't want, while suffering little or no fallout - which is common when dominance theory is evoked.

    So the next time your trainer makes a statement that it's a dominance thing...ask that person to explain it using learning theory. If they stutter or avoid the question, find a new trainer.

  19. #18
    Senior Member Dogstar's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Posts
    4,072

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    I don't think dominance is the right word- and sorry, I should have addressed that. Mal is, with other dogs, and people in general, a very soft, giving type of dog. He *loves* to lean and can be a little passive-aggressive about it. :P "Look how cute and submissive I am. You should pet me and give me lovins. *blink blink*" Indy- who is a pushy little SOB- would never DREAM of sitting on anyone's feet and moves promptly out of personal space ("gives to pressure" in horse terms ) because I've made sure and work on it- otherwise he takes up the entire bed!

  20. #19
    Senior Member Cheetah's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    CO, ID, UT, TX, EVERYWHERE!
    Posts
    2,377

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    Sitting on feet is not necessarily a sign of disrespect. My dog lies on my feet sometimes when she's sleeping, or leans on them, but doesn't actually realize she's doing it, and is certainly not a dominant dog. If she really is annoying me by doing it, I have a command for that. A nice firm "git!" makes her go away.

    Eevee ~ 14-year-old F Border Collie Mix - My Heart Dog!
    Ravinel Fox Magick, CGC (Shippo) ~ 8-year-old M Pembroke Welsh Corgi

  21. #20
    Senior Member Chicalen1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Weaverville NC
    Posts
    400

    Re: Dog sitting on feet...

    I really don't think this is a dominance issue with Sofi she has never sit on my feet she does lean on me when I pet her but I think she does it because she is enjoying being petting.

    Amanda
    Amanda

    A house is not a home with out a dog or two or more!

  22. Remove Advertisements
    DogForums.com
    Advertisements
     

+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast

Quick Reply Quick Reply

  • Decrease Size
    Increase Size
  • Remove Text Formatting
  • Insert Link Insert Image Insert Video
  • Wrap [QUOTE] tags around selected text

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
SEO by vBSEO 3.5.2 ©2010, Crawlability, Inc.