Move Away From the Guest

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Description – using kibble, treats, or other types of food or toys to lure or encourage a dog away from a person or people who are entering your home or moving toward you outdoors.

Prerequisites:  Clicker Basics; Name Game; Sit; Strategic Treat Placement

When to use Move Away – you can use Move Away training any time you want to encourage your dog to move away from another person. An example would be guests coming into your home, you can toss food or toys to encourage the dog to move away from the guest thus preventing the dog from jumping on the guest.  Properly executed this is not a bribe it successfully teaches the dog that when people come, move the other way and good things happen!

Caveat – it is necessary to use a toy or treat that is higher value than that of guests. So if you have an Uber friendly dog who is absolutely delighted that guests have come to visit him, you may need to toss a very high-value food such as hot dogs or even pork roast, or his very favorite ball or tug toy.  Be prepared to toss more than one time as it may take the dog several repetitions of scurrying away and returning to you before calming down.

The directions are

  1. Have a goal. Generally the goal is just for the dog to not jump on the guest. However over time you can increase criteria.
  2. First and foremost you must be prepared. If you frequently have guests coming to your home for example unannounced, you will want to have food or toys available at your entrance door at all times. Training really means creating new habits and creating new habits comes through consistency.
  3. When the guest knocks on the door, your dogs will most likely bark and get excited, bring your dogs with you to the door and before you open the door toss the treats or toys away from the door.
  4. As your dog is scurrying around to find the treats or toys that you just tossed, open the door and allow your guest in. When your dog turns and notices that someone has entered the home immediately toss again. Your dog should go scurrying away again to find more treats or toys.
  5. Repeat this procedure several times until your dog is scurrying around and then returning to you. You are the bearer of treats and toys and therefore your dog should return to you.
  6. Once your dog is returning to you, it is time to ask for sit.
  7. Once the dog sits toss again.
  8. Simultaneously ask your guest to ignore your dog. No petting the dog no talking to the dog no engaging the dog at all. This helps make you the bearer of all good things including love and attention.
  9. As time goes on you will need to toss fewer and less often and eventually not at all.
  10. As you become proficient and coordinated with managing the door, the treats, etc., be animated with your hand signal as you toss, so that the dog learns that “that” hand signal means to go “that” way.  Eventually you won’t need treats, your dog will learn the hand signal to move away.

10.  Dogs learn by practicing, so if you are consistent your dog will be practicing moving away from your guest and giving a sit.

When to click: click as the dog is moving away from the guest or in other words towards the treats and toys, click only one time. He will be rewarded by hunting and finding treats and toys that you have tossed.


  • The treats and/or toys that you toss must be more exciting than the guest.
  • Watch your dog, not your guest.  This is difficult for many of us to learn as we deem it rude, but remember, this is training.
  • Don’t be in a big hurry to open the door.  Feel coordinated with your dog and your treat toss first.
  • The guest must ignore the dog.
  • Remember the importance of strategic treat placement, scatter the treats such that the dog is moving away from the guest but not so far that the dog finds interacting with the guest more convenient and less effort.
  • Be prepared, be 100% consistent.
  • You may have read, heard or learned to just ask the dog for said as an alternate behavior to jumping. This is a great technique. However with a young dog or even a dog who is new to training this can be very frustrating to both the dog, the owner and the guest. This simple Move Away from the Guest Please protocol will help you teach the dog to sit when guests come and without frustration for either you or the dog or the guest.