There are many benefits of owning a dog, including managing loneliness and depression and getting an opportunity to exercise by walking or running outside. If you’re looking for a loyal friend who will never betray you, then you need to own a dog.
But you can only enjoy these benefits if your dog likes you. If you’re not sure whether your dog dislikes you, this article offers you 8 signs your dog doesn’t like you.
Can Your Dog Dislike You?
Since dogs are naturally affectionate, everyone expects their dog to naturally shower them with love and affection. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. Sometimes your dog may dislike you and become distant.
The realization that your dog doesn’t like you can be heartbreaking, especially if it’s the only close companion you have at home. When this happens, the main concern should be to understand why your dog doesn’t like you. Many factors can cause your canine friend to dislike you.
What Makes Your Dog Dislike You?
While it may not take long for you to realize that your dog doesn’t like you, knowing why the dog dislikes you may not be so obvious. That’s why you should start by understanding what it means to be disliked by your dog. Although dogs are highly intelligent, their psychology is quite straightforward.
So, your dog may dislike you because it’s naturally distrustful of people or introverted. This is usually caused by a mixture of genetics, training, and upbringing. It’s also important to note that every dog is unique in many ways, including how it socializes with people.
So, a dog can bond better with certain members of your family than others. Studies have also revealed that some dogs create better bonds with members of their own class than their owners. The truth is that how your dog treats you mainly depends on the nature and quality of your relationship.
Since dogs aren’t critics, they won’t dislike you because of your opinions or character, but they’ll judge you by their experience of you. If your dog feels threatened or uncomfortable around you, it won’t show you affection. Here are some of the other factors that may cause your dog to dislike you.
1. Body Language
Sometimes you may assume that you’re being friendly to your dog with your body language, while in fact, you’re making it uncomfortable with your mixed signals. For instance, raising yourself over your dog and narrowing your eyes or bearing your teeth can be interpreted as a sign of aggression. This will scare the dog away, especially if it’s already uncomfortable around you.
2. Being Excessively Rough
Your dog will dislike you if you’re always tugging on its leash or pushing it around. This usually happens when you continuously use negative reinforcement like reproaching or hitting the dog when it does something wrong. This will frighten the dog, causing it to stay away from you.
Many dogs don’t like to be hugged. It makes them feel like they’ve been restrained. Others see hugging as a form of harassment. So, if you continuously try to hug your dog, it may distrust you and keep its distance.
4. Inappropriate Touching
If you thought it is fun to pull your dog’s tail, ears, or legs, stop it immediately. You may think you’re affectionate, but dogs don’t like being touched in these areas. Doing so constantly will cause the dog to dislike you.
While some dogs like playing tricks, sensitive dogs hate them. Confusing tricks will leave your dog wary of you. So, know the type of dog you’re dealing with before you start playing the tricks.
Although dogs are naturally courageous, sometimes they can be frightened by negative situations, people, and other animals. If you constantly put your dog in negative situations that make it uncomfortable, it’ll grow resentful.
7. Lack of Experience
Some dogs, especially puppies, are inexperienced and don’t know how to deal with people. They can be wary of you, especially when you take them away from their mother. In this case, you just have to exercise patience and wait for them to bond with you as they grow older.
8 Signs Your Dog Doesn’t Like You
While it’s hard to read your dog’s mind and actions, some explicit behaviors will let you when your dog doesn’t like you. If you analyze these behaviors keenly, you’ll realize that your dog is no longer comfortable around you.
1. Avoid Your Presence
The first thing that should tell you that your dog isn’t comfortable around you is its tendency to walk away whenever you go near it. This could mean that the dog is hiding from you because you intimidate it. In this case, you need to analyze your behavior toward the dog to know what makes it feel uncomfortable around you.
2. Don’t Like Your Touch
Petting is one of the easiest ways to form a strong bond with your dog. It reassures the dog and helps it to release stress. So, if your dog recoils when you touch it, it could mean that it doesn’t like you.
3. Tail Tucking
Dogs tuck their tails when they’re afraid. So, if your dog tucks its tail when you’re around, it could be a sign of fear. This could also mean that the dog feels stressed or uncomfortable around you.
4. Lack of Eye Contact
Although dogs don’t like to be stared at or looked directly into their eyes, there should be a certain amount of eye contact between you and your dog. So, if your canine friend always looks away or seems to cover their face when you gaze at it, it could be a sign of discomfort.
5. Flat Ears
Although flat ears are a sign of aggression in some dogs, they could also indicate discomfort. If your dog suddenly starts to flatten its ears whenever you’re around, try to analyze its body language to know for sure if it’s a sign of uneasiness.
6. Barking or Growling
While some dogs are naturally aggressive, you should be concerned if your dog starts showing signs of aggression toward you. If your dog wants to be around you, it’ll whine or call out for you. But if it barks and growls more aggressively when you come close to it, it means you’re making it uncomfortable.
7. Biting and Scratching
Sometimes your puppies will bite you even when they’re playing, especially if they haven’t mastered bite inhibition. However, if a mature dog bites you, it could be a sign of fear and discomfort. In that case, you need to handle the dog with care to avoid serious injuries and infections.
8. Bearing Teeth
Like barking and growling, bearing teeth is a common sign of aggression in dogs. If your dog starts doing it to you, it could be trying to be defensive. Be careful when dealing with such a dog because it can attack at any moment.
What Should You Do If Your Dog Doesn’t Like You?
Learning that your dog may not like you can be quite unsettling and disheartening. Whether it cowers when you’re around, snarls, barks, or avoids you completely, it’s hard not to get hurt. However, it’s important to understand that sometimes your dog may become withdrawn because of something that has nothing to do with you.
Whatever the reason your dog is behaving this way, you need to find a way to make it feel comfortable around you. Here are some important tips to help you deal with a dog that doesn’t like you.
1. Stay Calm
You can’t help the situation by freaking out. It’ll only make it worse. The dog could be giving you a cold shoulder because it had a rough past or it wasn’t exposed to so many people when growing up.
The best way to deal with the situation is to stay calm and try to figure out why the dog is acting like that. This may take time to figure out because you have to analyze the pattern in your behavior toward the dog to determine the source of the problem. Also, give the dog to adjust.
2. Give It Space
Aside from giving your dog time to adapt, you also need to give it enough personal space. Your dog could be acting out whenever you try to hug it because it’s not used to it. It’s the same way you could be jumpy when a stranger tries to hug you. So, give the dog some personal space and allow it to adjust.
3. Give Treats
Dogs love treats. Therefore, you can build a relationship with your dog by giving treats and food. If possible, let the dog take the treat from your hand. But if the dog is still shy or frightened by you, put the treat on the floor.
This will help the dog to realize that you are honest and caring. You have to repeat this couple of times before you win back the dog’s trust and affection. So, don’t be upset if the situation doesn’t change after the first and second attempts.