Why do some dogs lunge at the front door when the door bell rings?

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Dogs are likely to associate the ringing of the door bell with a stranger entering the home. Because most dogs are naturally protective of their packs, or their human family, they will instinctively lunge at the front door when the doorbell rings as an attempt to warn the stranger. A doorbell is also a startling sound for a dog, and will prompt immediate action.

With some training and practice, a dog can be taught not to lunge at the front door when the door bell rings. Often times, dogs who lunge at the front door will also not behave once an unfamiliar person enters the home. Barking and jumping at visitors is a behavior that needs to be corrected quickly. You can simulate the situation by having someone that the dog is familiar with ring the doorbell and then enter the home calmly. Your dog will see that the doorbell and the opening of the door to allow someone in needn’t be a scary experience.

Dogs who can see out a window to look over the front of the home or apartment will also be less likely to lunge at the door when the bell rings. If a dog can visually see someone approaching, they will most likely be on guard, but not shocked or surprised by the doorbell ringing.

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