A strong bond between you and your dog is the foundation of your relationship. However, you may unintentionally be doing things to undermine your bond with your dog.
How to Tell If Your Bond With Your Dog Is Weak
Here are a few signs from your dog that your bond is not as strong as it could be:
- Emotional indifference to you or family members.
- Failure to respond to commands, especially the come command.
- Regular attempts at running off.
- Lack of interest in play.
- Distaste for being handled.
- Antagonism or outright aggressiveness toward you.
What Are the Signs of a Strong Bond?
If your dog feels a real emotional connection with you, he makes eye contact, smiles (as much as a dog can smile!), wags his tail, and rubs against you. He’s animated when you come home and may vocalize his joy.
How to Strengthen Your Bond With Your Dog
- A strong bond means a happy dog. Here are some dos and don’ts to ensure your dog has a positive attitude toward you.
- Keep commands short – a dog can’t understand whole sentences.
- Refrain from hugging. You may not realize it, but most dogs hate hugs.
- Resist picking your dog up like a baby (if he’s small enough!). If you pick him up and turn him over so that he’s upside-down, you’re making him anxious.
- Give your dog structure and rules. Your dog needs a predictable life and will thrive when he knows where the boundaries are.
- Don’t force your dog to interact with people or other dogs he obviously dislikes. If you push your dog too far in social situations, he’s more likely to react by growling, biting, or fighting.
- Walk your dog properly. He needs to know how to behave on a leash, but he also needs time to explore his surroundings. Consistently hurrying your dog to go to the bathroom doesn’t allow him sufficient time to smell and find the appropriate place.
- Your dog can read your tension levels even through a leash. So, by keeping a tight leash, you’re raising his stress level.
- Don’t be boring. You get home from work and want to unwind and sack out on the couch. But your poor dog has been waiting around all day for you to come and play with him.
- Refrain from teasing. Don’t pull on your dog’s tail or ears or do anything else you know makes your dog mad just because you think it’s funny.
- Avoid scary scenarios. You may have to sometimes bring your dog into unfamiliar situations, but don’t go down that dark alley if it’s not really necessary.
- Go light on fragrances. If you smell one cinnamon roll, your dog will smell multiple dozens. So don’t overdo perfume, cologne, etc.
- Avoid too much alone time. Carve out some time or find ways for your dog to play with other dogs and/or people. Doggie daycare is a great option.
- Stay calm. Yelling and throwing a temper tantrum will frighten your dog, even if your anger isn’t directed at him. If it is, because he’s just chewed up your favorite shoes, that’s even more damaging.
Strengthen Your Bond With Your Dog: Final Thoughts
You want the best for your canine friend, so do everything you can to make your bond with him as solid as possible.
- At Midlands Pet Care, we understand how emotionally distressing it is to have to say goodbye to your beloved pet that you share a strong bond with. Known for our compassionate care, we specialize in pet burials and cremation, along with memorial items of your pet. Let us handle the technicalities for you when the time comes to say goodbye to your four-legged family member.