1. Socialize him to the same furry friends.
Do you have friends that own dogs your pup can socialize with? Set up play dates for you and your dog!
Seeing familiar faces and interacting with dogs that don’t bully him or react in a peculiar way can be extremely beneficial. Dogs are social creatures and need exposure on a regular basis.
2. Watch your body language
Dogs are amazing mirrors. They mimic and relate to our emotions in a very personal way. They can feel us. So, if we are happy and confident, they will be also!
Don’t pass your fears or stress to him. Dogs can learn our patterns, including things we will not notice ourselves.
Even if you don’t feel it make your body appear relaxed and confident; chin up; arms and shoulder down; soft eyes: dogs like confident centered leaders.
3. Get him out
Go on a walk or hike somewhere new. Have you ever try doga (dog yoga)? Trying new things with your dog will make your relationship stronger and will make your dog feel safer.
4. Eliminate love and attention on demand
Attention is a reward. If your dog is being pushy. And you look at him our touch him, be assured that he will come back for more. Especially since he has being getting extra attention these days. Instead of giving in try to relax, yawn and blink. If he pushes, rubs his body, jumps, barks or growls keep ignoring him and stand up. Turn around or go to another room . If he gets worse put him on timeout or reward calm behaviors when he is done begging for love. Remember, your pup doesn’t need extra love and attention, he needs a good leader that teaches good qualities and doesn’t reward bad behavior. I promise you he will be happier that way. Reward calm and independent behaviors ALL THE TIME.
5. Fighting separation or isolation anxiety
This is going to be a big one since our pups are so used to having us around all the time now.
If your dog is peeing inside the house, barking excessively or getting very stressed when you leave, this is likely separation anxiety. Dogs learn patterns quickly. If they start getting nervous when they hear you grab your car keys, start grabbing your keys throughout the day even when you arent leaving. If there are other cues that alert your dog, do them when you are in the house to help desensitize him to the event of you leaving. You can also do things like leaving a shirt that has your smell on the floor where they like to lay down or you can leave a blanket on top of the crate so he feels safe. Calming chews are amazing for this situation, and there are a variety of options that most people like.
If the problem keeps persisting try planning 15 minute sessions right before you leave and come back to him after you grab your keys or put your shoes on and then leave for a few minutes and come back regularly to teach him you will always return. Start small, even leaving for one minute then returning will help them relax. After they seem comfortable with the one minute absence, start adding time.