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How Can I Calm Things Down Upon My Return After Work?


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I am wondering how to have my greyhounds not get so excited upon my return from work at the end of the day. I have two greys, and had one previously. With my angel grey Duke, the neighbors said they always knew when I got home and my garage door went up because he would start howling. He would dance and spin a bit when I came in, completely tolerable, he was a happy guy.

 

Fast forward several years to a few months ago when I had only one grey, Brin. I come home at lunch and let the dogs out and then go back to work. Coming home at lunch things were calm. After work she would bark a bit and dance - but nothing too extreme. Add greyhound number two, Amaya, a month ago. Initially Amaya was calm when I got home - both at lunch and after work. But she has picked up on Brins antics and has joined in the barking, dancing, jumping, and spinning fun when I get home after work. And Amaya joining in has caused Brin to up her game. 😬 And I have not mentioned my terrier mix who now, since the other two are so excited, has also decided to join the fun. 🙄 (I seriously will not wear shoes with any type of heel because I do get bumped into. Nothing aggressive - just too much excitement.)

 

So, given all 3 of my greyhounds have gotten pretty excited upon my return - is this just a greyhound thing?

 

My question - how can I calm things down upon my return in the evening? I come in very calmly. No big celebration. I let the pups out and then feed them dinner. Hmm... maybe that is the problem. Maybe I should delay dinner for a while? Maybe they are excited about dinner? And here I thought it was because they knew I was home for the day. 😉 Honestly I want to feed them and relax but delaying dinner may be worth a try. I can not understand why else they are reasonably calm at lunch but not after work. 🤔

 

I am open to any thoughts or suggestions. If things continue to escalate I am afraid someone is going to get hurt in the celebration, be it a dog or me. I obviously do not want that to happen. Thx in advance.

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It's not a greyhound thing, it's a dog thing. After lunch, they *know* you're going to leave again, so, no big deal. After work, Mom comes home, we go out, we get dinner - WHOOPEEE!!!!!

 

So, walk in the door and immediately turn your back to them. Face the door, don't speak to them or engage them in any way until they calm down. If they start up again, turn away again. Keep a bowl of small treats handy to reward calm behavior.

 

Alternatively, if they know any commands like sit or down, you can ask for that behavior to help them focus and remain calm. Remember- reward the behavior you want, ignore the ones you don't.

 

Lots of times multiples will "displace" their excitement into their packmates, often causing trouble and fights. You may need to try and redirect them to separate areas if so.

Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

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Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

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Agree with above. Jeter started out going wild and crazy when I came home. He is big and powerful and clumsy, with no sense of personal space. It didn't take many days of being "shunned" for him to learn that wasn't cool. He still runs out the dog door and barks madly as my car pulls into the garage. But when I walk inside, he is lying down on his bed in the den, wagging his tail.

 

Dear Nutmeg had a variation where she would jump up and down vertically to an amazing height just 1" away from me. It was cute, but I was nervous about her misjudging the distance between us. She was easily guided further away from me with a small treat. As she got older, her vertical leap got shorter and shorter, until at age 13 it was more like just an upward shrug of the shoulders. But the spirit was still the same. As my father used to say, I like a dog with a little enthusiasm.

Edited by EllenEveBaz

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Ellen, with brindle Milo and the blonde ballerina, Gelsey

remembering Eve, Baz, Scout, Romie, Nutmeg, and Jeter

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  • 2 weeks later...

I will say that the more dogs - the more they join in. Not just greys, any dog will join in the crazy if one starts it.

 

I think you hit on a good point to NOT feed them as soon as you get home.

 

Come in, don't acknowledge the drama. Move about the house and ignore them. Or, if it's jumping, turn your back. Don't look at them, don't talk to them. When they calm, talk to them but don't feed them right away. Just go about your business for a bit. When the behave, interact.

 

My Diana was a terrible jumper and nibbler when she was excited, like when I came home. I know it was done out of excitement and happiness, but it's not OK behavior, and she could hurt someone with her enthusiasm. It was SO HARD for me to turn my back, cross my arms, and ignore her for 10 minutes every time I came home.... but it worked. She learned to curb her enthusiasm, and we were good. Now, she still wiggled and snapped in happiness when I walked in, and that's pretty cool.

Edited by sobesmom
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