Friday, July 22, 2011


It turns out your teenager may not be the only insecure one in the household. That moody wallflower sitting in a corner with apprehensive eyes could just as well be Fido! Though your dog does not have to worry about the perfect outfit to wear to the dance, your canine has his or her own reasons for adopting this shy attitude. How can you help your pooch break out of their shell and meet the world with confidence and vigor? We’ve got some tips to eradicate this behavior.

Signs of an Insecure Pooch
Does your dog roll over as soon as you, or other people approach, exposing his or her little dog belly? Does your dog pee when you touch him or her? If your precious pup exhibits signs of this behavior, chances are you have a passive dog on your hands. Other signs of a shy dog are wide fearful eyes or squinted eyes, ears pressed flat against the head, and/or lowering its body to the ground to be as small as possible.

Why is Your Dog Shy?
There are many reasons why a dog might be shy and it can be difficult to pinpoint the root of the cause unless you watched your dog age from a puppy to adulthood. Chances are, if you adopted your dog they might have some fear issues and this probably stems from their upbringing, their former owners, or the way they were treated previously by both humans and/or other animals. This behavior is also inherited from canine parents as well, so if doggie Mom was insecure, it is possible your dog might be too.

Boost Your Dog’s Confidence
Since you can’t give your dog a shot of confidence you will have to slowly work through the issue. Do not make your dog feel more insecure by engaging in what a pooch can interpret as assertive behavior. This can include towering over your pup, staring them in the eyes, or for some, petting them on the head or back. Stick to a neutral zone like stroking your dog’s chest, and kneel down to their level without looking them in the eye. Encourage guests that come to your house to treat your dog in the same manner and to keep greetings and interactions calm and low-key. It is not a good idea to over-excite an anxious dog. It is important to remember that whatever you do, do not reprimand or scold an insecure dog; it will only make them believe they are not showing you or your guests enough respect and might result in your dog feeling more unconfident. Teach your dog basic training skills and simple commands. Your dog will gain confidence as his or her world expands and your pooch learns new skills.

Agility to the Rescue!
Another wonderful way for your canine to increase their doggie self-esteem is by partaking in agility. Agility is a great dog sport and a powerful way to increase the bond between you and your dog. Canines love having a job to do and agility not only encourages your dog to learn new skills but it allows your dog to be active and have fun while doing it. Morris K9 Campus offers a range of agility classes starting with a beginner level where no prior experience is necessary.

Help your dog tackle their insecurities and approach the world with self-assurance!

1 comment:

  1. I definetly think my dog has insecurities...everytime she gets a "haircut", our children laugh when she returns home and you can feel her confidence and even her mannerisms change. Thanks for sharing.