For a person who is crazy about dogs, this list can come off as a big reality check. Doggos love good humans everywhere, and we do our best to reciprocate it. We don’t really know how to speak in barks nor do we fully understand them. But there is no denying that when you are close with your dog, there is a strong connection which keeps you together. Bearing that in mind, all dog parents should understand that there are things that they do, things that can annoy their dogs.
We train dogs to get rid of certain behaviors and adapt to the lifestyle that we live. Certainly, it would be selfish if we don’t try to see from their perspective every once in a while. Its a two-way street in this human-canine relationship. So without further ado, let’s get started with the human behaviors that can annoy, threaten, and even anger our dog partners.
1. Staring and Glaring
Have you seen a dog, or any animal, as a matter of fact, get into attack mode? They lock their eyes on their prey. This fixated stare helps them to make a quick decision and pounce on it within a matter of seconds. What do you think a dog would assume if you stare at it fixedly? Staring at a dog for too long can trigger a dog and they could get defensive. Even if your dog doesn’t seem to show any aggressiveness, and you might have done it a lot, it doesn’t mean that your dog has stopped getting annoyed.
2. Hugging and Cuddling
You see a lot of pictures on social media where dog parents are hugging their dog kids close. It looks adorable and makes you want to do it too unless you are already one of those parents. But does your dog like them too? Good news is, most of the dogs do like regular hugs from their humans. They seem to understand that it makes you happy. But naturally, dogs don’t like tight hugs and similar close physical affection. Especially, if it comes from a person they just met or meet once in a while.
3. Teasing and Mocking
Many children and even some idiotic adults resort to teasing dogs just for some cheap fun. The usual acts include pulling a dog’s ears, mock barking at them, chasing them, and scaring them with sticks. Dogs also don’t like getting disturbed while they are eating. Even when you are trying to train your dog, don’t keep them trying for treats for too long. Such dogs can become shy and insecure. Or worse, aggressive.
4. Shouting and Yelling
Dogs can identify if you are or happy, sad or angry from the tone of your voice. Calling out to your dog in a pleasant voice, like, “Come on boy!” and, “Who’s a good girl?”, lets them know that everything is fine. Although they don’t understand your words, they do understand the change of vocal tones. That’s why you should not yell and shout at your dog or when they are around. Increased volumes scare them and they could react aggressively.
5. Deserting and Isolating
Canines live in packs. In the wild, they survive together, hunt together, and they stay loyal to their pack till death. Your domesticated pet dog does not have the company of other dogs to form a pack. So it starts seeing you and your family as its pack. Deserting your dog when you go off to work can have hazardous impacts. It can develop negative behaviors that could irritate you but are actually the result of separation anxiety. Try to spend good quality time with your dog in the evening if you work during the day. You can even ask a friend or neighbor to check on it and take it out for a walk while you are away.
6. Cramming and Crowding
Dogs are pack animals but that does not mean they like places with too many dogs and people. If you leave your dog at a dog park with hundreds of other dogs who are practically strangers, your dog would get very uncomfortable. Pinned back ears and a lowered tail are signs that your dog doesn’t like it there. The same goes for dog daycares. Even a sociable dog can befriend six to seven dogs at the most. Avoid putting your dog in places where it feels overwhelmed.
7. Interruptions While Sleeping
There is an unwritten law that thou mustn’t wake up a sleeping man by way of disturbance. While our parents showed no care for this rule, you have a chance to be better parents to your dogs. Dogs should not be woken up at all. They dream too. Making a sudden and loud noise can scare them up from sleep. This causes more harm if your dog is older or has an impaired hearing. If you have kids in the apartment, teach them never to interrupt a dog in its sleep. If you do need to wake them up, do so slowly.
8. Alien Dogs
No, not the dogs from outer space, but dogs your friends have, and whom your dog doesn’t know can cause your dog to get aggressively defensive. It is wrong to think that dogs are welcome to having other dogs over at their home. Suddenly introducing a stranger dog can cause major troubles. Instead, let your dog befriend other dogs over some time. If you plan to bring a new dog home, make arrangements regarding toys and food beforehand to prevent fights.
9. Deviating from the Schedule
Your dog lives with you and gets accustomed to a schedule. If you follow a fixed time for feeding, playing, and walking, never deviate from it. Your dog depends on this routine, and sudden changes annoy them. Even if you feel tired, take them out for that early morning walk every day. If you don’t follow a routine yet, make one ASAP!
10. Tight Leashes
Dogs don’t like tight leashes. You should train your dog to walk with you on a loose leash. While it seems like you have more control with a tight leash, it strains the harness or collar. Keep the leash loose and make unexpected turns and speed changes to keep your dog focused. This keeps them happy on your walks.
11. Inconsistent Commanding
You love it when your dog jumps on you when you come home. But then you scold it when it jumps on other people who come home. Inconsistent commands confuse your dog and annoy it. Make a decision about all such actions and stick to one rule. If you don’t want your dog begging for food from guests, never feed it while you’re eating. It is not cruel but good for your dog’s happiness.
12. Unknowing Aggressive Greeting
The usual way people greet and call dogs is by crouching, staring, and stretching their hands out. This is the complete mix of an aggressive stance in the eyes of dogs. Crouching is the position a predator retains before attacking; the staring ensures that it is waiting for the best moment to strike, and the outstretched hands intrude the dog’s personal space. Never greet a dog in this way.
This is a long list but an important one if you care about the well-being of your dog. Apart from the points mentioned here, if you feel that other things annoy your dog, put a stop to them immediately. Show that you love them by showing regard to how they feel. This is how you can guarantee happiness for your dog and yourself.