Behavioral problems are a common reason for relinquishing ownership of dogs. Androstenone, a pig pheromone acting as an interomone in dogs, has been demonstrated to reduce barking in dogs.
We sought to determine the effects of androstenone on leash pulling and jumping up in dogs.
Community dogs of various breeds and ages were represented. No verbal or visual cues were given to the dogs. In Study 1, dogs were walked 53 m around an enclosed yard using a standard neck collar and leash. Each time the dog pulled, the researcher did nothing (NOT), or sprayed the dog with water (H2O), androstenone + water (ANH), or InteroSTOP (INT). Leash pulls during each walk were counted. In Study 2, a researcher stood in front of each dog's home kennel. Each time the dog jumped, the researcher did nothing (NOT), or sprayed the dog with water (H2O), or with androstenone + water (ANH). Number of jumps and seconds between jumps were recorded.
In Study 1, ANH and INT reduced leash pulling by 84% and 86%, respectively (p < 0.001). In Study 2, dogs experiencing H2O and ANH jumped 81% and 92% less, respectively. Treatment with H2O and ANH resulted in longer times between jumps compared to NOT (p < 0.01); however, dogs experiencing ANH stayed down an average of 25 seconds longer than dogs experiencing H2O (p < 0.05).
Androstenone reduces dog leash pulling and jumping, and may be effective in a training program.