Your dog may get all frisky playing with you, taking evening walks with you, and enjoying amazing vacation trips with you, but that doesn’t mean you don’t do some annoying things that freaks them out.
Most times, it’s just hard to tell when your loving pooch is upset. Remember, they see you as their caregiver and friend, so they tend to forgive easily.
We’ve put together some of the common ways dog owners annoy their dog. You just might be guilty of any of these:
1. Not sticking to a routine
Dogs are lovers of routine. They are more comfortable when they know when their next meal will arrive, when you’ll be coming home, when they will be dashing out to take a walk, and more.
If you don’t set a routine for your pooch, they might develop anxiety and behavioral issues out of anger. To avoid these problems, you should try to meet your dog’s needs on a consistent routine, whether weekday or weekend.
Of course, you can add extra activities to their routine for more fun, but ensure you make the environment predictable.
2. Yelling at your dog
Dogs see yelling as you barking at them. Yes, they sense you’re displeased about something, but they do not understand the meaning of what you’re saying. They may pick your message, but most of the time they become confused and angry.
Sometimes, yelling agitates your dog, and they tend to continue in that unruly behavior you’re reprimanding. If you’re used to yelling, you’re lucky your pooch hasn’t bitten your butt off out of anger… ahah…
Instead of raising your voice at your dog, you can keep your tone low and volume steady while you pass your message of disapproval.
3. Staring at your dog
Unless your dog has learned to associate you staring at them with good things like treats and cuddles, they do not enjoy when you stare at them for long.
Staring is threatening in language of dogs, so if you haven’t taught them to enjoy eye contact, you might be freaking annoying your pooch when you stare into their eyes for long.
However some dog enjoys direct eye contact. This is good because as you stare into each other’s eyes, the feel-good hormone called “oxytocin” is released, and it boosts your emotional bond and feelings of love.
4. Leaving your dog alone
Dogs are sociable animals and they require your company to thrive in health and mental wellbeing. Your pooch may get angry when you leave them all alone.
Of course you can’t always be around your dog every minute of the day, but leaving them all along for too long may lead to unhappiness and separation anxiety, excessive barking, destructive chewing, and more.
Always try to spend quality time with your furry friend every day. If you know you’ll be always for many hours or days, you can consider hiring a dog walker or pet sitter to attend to your pet’s needs.
5. Hugging your dog
Hugging is no doubt a sign of affection, but sometimes, dogs see it as an invasion of their personal space. Many dogs hate tight embrace and find it annoying.
Your dog feels like you’re restraining their movement and they can’t even run away or escape. Hugs can also seem like a threat.
So even if you’re their beloved owner, learn to use more dog-friendly approach to shower your pooch with affection rather than hugs.
6. Boring your dog
Dogs are adventurous in nature. Most breeds are originally meant for jobs like catching vermin and herding. So keeping your four-legged companion at home all day without anything to do is dreadfully boring and they find it annoying.
The bad part is when a dog is bored, they tend to be destructive because they get angry. Even breeds that are developed to be companions still appreciate some adventure.
So always ensure you provide your do with plenty of mental stimulation and exercise. You can consider taking them for sporting activities that puts their instinct and intelligence to work.
Another option is to buy your pooch fun and interactive dog toys.
7. Patting on the top of the head
You might have noticed the stress signals your dog shows you when you pat them on the top of their head. They find it annoying, but for some reasons, many dog owners are guilty of this act.
Apart from patting a dog’s head, these furry creatures do not like outstretched hands over them – it’s a form of threat to them.
8. Teasing your dog
Dogs find it annoying when you tease them – pretending to throw a ball, pulling their tail and more. It may seem like much fun to you but it’s unfair to your dog.
Although children are the main culprits when it comes to teasing dogs, some adults do tease their pooch. But unfortunately, teasing your dog can erode their trust on you. Instead, learn to deliver what you promise your dog and be honest with your pet.
9. Rushing your dog while taking a walk with them
You might think walking your dog is only exercising them and giving potty breaks, so you tend to rush it up. Well, you’re actually ruining your dog walks because they do not like being rushed on walks.
You should try and incorporate a good sniff session, socialization, and mental stimulation into your walk sessions with your dog.
Instead of asking your dog to heel past every tree trunk and fire hydrant, allow them explore, smell, and take their time.
10. Acting based on your spoken language
Many dog owners seem to forget that dogs are not humans like them and most times, dogs find it annoying when you expect them to understand everything you say.
Although dogs are great companions and make great listeners, you need to always put it at the back of your mind that they do not understand human speech.
In other words, they do not process what you say the way you do. Instead, they can only learn a few words and commands.
So you need to be conscious of how you verbally communicate with your dog. Use only words they understand and stay consistent in how you use your cues, signals and words.
11. Leaving your dog with too many unfamiliar dogs
When you take your dog to a park or doggy day care and leave them to stay with too many other dogs, they tend to become anxious and stressed. They find this annoying, especially when they are the timid type.
So always ensure you’re not overwhelming your dog by surrounding her with too many strange dogs.
12. Creating scary sounds
You need to consider your pooch when working with objects or machines that make a lot of noise. Dogs do not like the sound of a vacuum cleaner, for example, they find it annoying when you do not first introduce them to it but expose them to it all at once.
You can respect your dog by avoiding loud noises that they hate. But another way is to reward them whenever they act brave and face their fears.