Does Your Big Dog Step on Your Feet?

Updated on February 22, 2011
K.M. asks from Oklahoma City, OK
17 answers

I have a part great dane, part akita, all muscle 100-pound puppy (just over a year old). At least twice a day, she steps on my foot. And it really hurts! I know that you have to catch a dog in the act of doing something wrong to be able to correct them, but this is usually over before I even have time to yell "ouch." I have attempted to correct her for it anyway, but it's obvious she doesn't know what she's in trouble for. Has anyone else had this odd problem? What did you do about it?

What can I do next?

  • Add your own comment
  • Ask your own question
  • Join the Mamapedia community
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

So What Happened?

Wow! Haha, I didn't think I would get so many responses on this question. There's a lot of good advice here. I used the words "doing something wrong"--that was mis-spoken. I don't think she's doing anything wrong; it's just a thing that she does that I don't like and I want to change it. If I can't then I guess I'll just have to wait for her to outgrow it. Thanks for all the input.

Featured Answers



answers from Washington DC on

:o) Wear shoes. Mine step on me too but not so much any more. I try to watch their feet and keep them out of the kitchen when I cook.
I have three, 2 shepherds and a beagle mix.

Edit My Answer
1 mom found this helpful


answers from Toledo on

Speak to a trainer. We've had 2 rotties that went through training classes, but I don't remember exactly what the process was (too many years ago). You CAN do it, though. With a big dog, training is very helpful to make them a better pet to have around. Akitas can be very stubborn, so training is always a good thing. Classes are inexpensive, and teach you more than the dog. The dog just wants to please you, but doesn't understand what you want.

More Answers



answers from Wichita on

I had a large mix breed male that would step on my feet when he was protecting me, in his mind anyway, so I always have warm fuzzies when I hear of a dog doing that. He passed away October 18, 2010.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

my doberman steps on my feet, but i don't consider it "doing something wrong", so i've never "corrected" her... i just consider it a small price i have to occassionally pay for having such an awesome dobergirl :)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Baton Rouge on

What is she doing when she steps on your feet? Jumping on you to greet you? Or is she stepping on them when she walks past you when you're sitting on the couch?
If she's doing it greeting you, our dog trainer taught us a simple way to avoid it. Stand directly in front of her a foot or so away and walk directly toward her, giving the command, "Move." Walk all the way into her if she doesn't. Do this several times a day. She will quickly learn to get out of your path when you say, "Move."
If she's doing it when you're sitting, you will have to teach her to take a different route across the room. Take her to one end of the room and leave a treat there. Then take her to the other end of the room, point the direction of the treat, and tell her, "Go." She will learn to go the direction you point. When you do this, set up the treat location and the starting point to follow the route you want her to take across the room to avoid your feet.

This worked with our pit mixes.



answers from Seattle on

Esp with puppies (under 4yo old) doing a high pitched yelp (how to type that .... eeeeiiuuup) lets them know instantaneously that something they have done hurts. Mimick the startled yelp they do if you accidentally hurt them. Even if it's a second or two after the fact, it typically only takes 2 or 3 times for them to entirely quit the painful behavior.

(Ouch doesn't help, btw. It sounds too much like the "wanna play????" bark that dogs do)



answers from Birmingham on

We have two big dogs - one about 100 lbs. also that is such a big baby. Yes, she will step on our feet any time we're that close. You're right, they have NO CLUE what they are doing and she would be clueless if punished. I just recommend you keep your feet out of her way, sort of like not putting your feet in the area when a car is backing up. You might do better teaching her to stay a little away from you but that would be tough if you call her for petting and loving on her. We just assume it's our responsibility to keep our toes and feet out from under her because it hurts badly!!



answers from Victoria on

My great dane/lab mix (125 lbs) is 10 years old and still steps on our feet. It hurts but I dont think there is anything you can do about it. They are just big dogs and sometimes clumsy and dont realize their size. My dog gets so excited when its time to eat- she will trample your feet and whack you with her tail- everyone gets out of her way. Its just part of life with a big dog, but Great Danes are wonderful dogs and I wouldnt trade her for it! :)



answers from San Francisco on

I'd say continue to gently correct her. At one she's still or just gotten through a big growth spurt (100 lbs in 1 year!) and really doesn't know where her body is. Talking to a trainer is a good idea too, as different things work for different dogs. I had a Golden who eventually caught on to the fact she needed to watch where her body was that she'd be in a group of kids playing ball and looking back behind her before backing up. It was hilarious to watch 'cause it was awkward enough for her to do that it was obvious she had the understanding she could knock someone over. From memory I'd say she was about 2 when I first noticed her doing this.



answers from Minneapolis on

It's not an odd problem. In fact, I was laughing pretty hard when I saw your post. I have huge Labs and my husband and I are convinced the dogs purposely dig in with all of their weight, their hind paws n' claws to rip into our bare feet when they're mad at us!! I swear they know when we're barefoot and let us have it.

Trainers will suggest you lift your your knee to distance a dog if it approaches to hop or get too close.

I don't have a solution for what our dogs do. They seem to gouge our feet as they run by us at full gallop to bark at the UPS dude or postman


answers from Jacksonville on

My dog (german shepherd) never steps on my feet. (with the exception of if she is super agitated by something outside and she is trying to get through the door that I haven't yet opened... lol). But just walking around the house with nothing special or crazy going on? No. never. Not since she has been grown. (she is about 6 yrs now).

When she stopped being a "puppy/adolescent" (under 2.5 years) and stopped the jumping on us out of excitement... all the stepping was gone too. I don't remember training her in any specific way to not step on me.. but she WAS trained to understand her place in our "pack". And she is the bottom of the totem pole... behind our kids.

One thing she DOES do... is when I call her over, and have her "sit" near me, she will sometimes sit on my foot. I remember reading somewhere that THAT move is some sort of "comfort" thing... but I can't recall exactly. But our dog is VERY aware of where her body is all the time. Feet included. Maybe some dogs are just innately more "goofy and clumsy" ? Ours is SO careful about where all her parts are.



answers from Boston on

I don't have a big dog anymore we have to small dogs and I am constantly tripping on them because insist on being under my feet while I clean. When I had a large dog I she stepped on my feet a few times but generally it was when she greeted me at the door because she was so excited.



answers from Sacramento on

your question brought back some wonderful memories for me! when i was very young we used to go visit some friends who owned a great pyranese (sp?) and she would always come over and stand on our feet and then lean in on us so she had a captive audience to pet her! she was the sweetest dog and even though she weighed a ton we loved to be stepped on! i dont remember it hurting at all!



answers from Boise on

My dog does this and it hurts like heck!! I usually yell and as I bend my knee to pull my foot out, she gets a knee to the side. I really feel it is a training thing. They shouldn't be all over you to be able to do it, and mine usually does it as she is going out the door or excited for something, so I make her sit. She is 12 though, so I think I am past the training point.



answers from Chicago on

Our dog is 150 pounds, yes all the time!! I also yell ouch, just because it hurts!! I know she does not do it on purpose. She is just so big and has no idea where her body is!!!



answers from Minneapolis on

We have a rottweiler/german sheppard dog. He is a big dog at about 125lbs and just a big ol baby. He is very sweet and steps on my feet all the time!!! I guess ive never really tried to stop it because he dont know he is doing anything wrong. He is just walking and gets excited (he has very big paws) and happens to constantly step on my feet. I will be curious to see what others say.



answers from Los Angeles on

yes I have a 150 lb great pyrenees, who is a leaner, I am not sure what you could do about it, other than wear stout shoes lol, she will probably grow out of it to a certain extent, but mine is 2, and still does it


Next question: Our Dogs Wont Stop Barking and Are Scaring Other Kids in the Neighborhood