Does your pooch always bark in protest whenever you give your spouse/romantic partner a smooch? Do those barks sometimes turn into jumps and headbutts, making your kissy time short lived? Training your pup to remain calm whenever you become affectionate with someone else calls for a little work from both you and your partner.
Step #1 - Give your pup attention together. Imagine if you're the only one feeding your pup, talking him for walks, petting him and teaching him obedience. He's naturally going to form a much tighter bond with you than your partner. If your partner comes into a room or sits on the couch and you shift your attention from your pup to your partner, your dog immediately thinks of her in a negative light. He thinks she doesn't do anything for him and you quit paying attention to him when partner is around.
Step #2 - Walk up to your partner but don't touch him/her. Just stand about a foot away and call your pup over. The second he bowls on through and sees you two standing next to one another, toss him a treat. By now your pup should be associating them with something more positive, and the treat reinforces that positive association. Instead of looking at him/her as someone who does nothing for him and just steals your attention, they're the reason he eats, gets exercise and plays, and now treats even fall out of the sky when she's around.
Step #3 - Give your partner a quick hug and pull back. If your dog didn't throw a fit, throw him a treat and give him praise. If he reacted negatively, tone it down. Don't lean in as far for the hug, pull back more quickly or just give your partner a tap on the shoulder. Your aim is to initiate physical contact without having your pup lose his mind. Keep doing this until your pup stands there patiently while you embrace them. No kissing yet!
Step #4 - Go in for a peck, but be quick about it. Just a quick smooch, and then pull back and reward your pup for being such a good boy about it. If he's not a good boy about it, ignore him and try again but pull back a bit faster.
Step #5 - Up the ante as your little guy remains well-behaved until you and your partner can kiss like normal. Remember to ignore any bad behavior. Don't say even a word!
By Chris Miksen
About the Author
Located in Pittsburgh, Chris Miksen has been writing instructional articles on a wide range of topics for online publications since 2007. He currently owns and operates a vending business. Miksen has written a variety of technical and business articles throughout his writing career. He studied journalism at the Community College of Allegheny County.