How to make bonding with your dog easier

Posted by Betty. September 3rd 2014.

There’s no question that everyone should have a great relationship with their pet dog and it’s important to ensure that both you and your dog are happy in this relationship. Here are some pointers to help you achieve that great connection.

Older man and dogSpend time together

This may sound obvious but often people don’t give enough time to their pets and this can lead to them begging for attention. It’s hugely important to spend time talking, petting or playing with your pet but make sure it’s always on your terms. Don’t give your dog your attention when they are demanding it or you will simply encourage their bad behaviour. Instead train your dog to know that when they’re sitting quietly, they will receive the most interest from you. Once you have decided to stop spending time with your dog, ensure that you give a clear signal so that they understand that it’s ‘quiet time.’ This signal can be a word, such as ‘finish’ or ‘enough’, or even a hand gesture. It’s vital that when you have given your pet this signal that you stop fussing them and stick to your command.

Encourage independence

Although it’s essential to spend time with your dog, it’s equally necessary to encourage independence. Problems can arise when dogs become too dependent on human attention and automatically receive it whenever they want; independent pets also mean you don’t have to pet them 24/7 in order to have a great relationship with them.
Try to not give your dog attention whenever they demand it, that way they will feel more confident on their own. It’s also recommended not to reassure your pet with attention when they are worried as this can cause them to become anxious when they are left alone.

Get to know your dog

Learn to recognise your dog’s body language and expressions so that when they are stressed or worried you can remove them from the situation that’s making them uncomfortable. If your dog can trust you then your relationship will grow. Get to know your dog’s likes and dislikes; by being aware of what they hate it will be easier to avoid those things and similarly if you know what they love, your relationship will only flourish. Part of getting to know your dog is getting to know their stomach and preparing healthy and tasty food is no doubt a great way to your pet’s heart.

An older black Labrador dog

Train your dog

One of the best ways to build a great relationship with your dog is by training them. If they come to you when called you will most likely let them off the lead more. If they don’t beg for food, they can spend time with you at meal times.

Train yourself

Not only should you train your dog to ensure you have a happy relationship, you should also train yourself to talk to your dog appropriately. Misunderstandings can break relationships so communicate clearly with your pet to ensure this doesn’t happen.
Dogs tend to understand visual signals more than verbal ones so try to use more than just your voice. Also get yourself into the habit of remaining calm around your dog – no one reacts well to screams and yells so don’t expect your dog to!

Back to blog