For tens of thousands of years, dogs have been man’s best friend. If you’re looking for an emotional moment, just Google or YouTube search “human and dog special bond,” and you’ll almost certainly end up needing a tissue.
Chances are, you know someone who has a fantastic bond with their dog, or you have one too. Well, it’s not rocket science. We’ll let you in on some tips and tricks to help you forge an excellent bond with your furry friend.
Don’t expect your bond with your dog to be like a fairytale. Your dog may need some time to warm up to you. For instance, a stray dog or one you brought from a shelter will need time to adapt. Be sensitive to their likes and dislikes. You may also wish to learn how to relieve stress in dogs in case your dog displays any signs of being stressed or anxious. Don’t compare your dog to others, and if you own multiple dogs, be sure not to create tension by seeming to prefer one over the others.
Confident, happy, and adaptable dogs are easygoing and would jump at every opportunity to have a good time. Shy and timid dogs, however, will need more coaxing and encouragement. So, go at your dog’s pace and be sensitive to their reactions every step of the way.
Give Your Dog a Name
Just like humans, dogs need names. Imagine having to signal or whistle every time to get your dog’s attention. That may get a response from your dog, but it won’t create special bonding moments. Names, however, are a surefire way to create bonding moments with your canine friend.
Choose a name that holds meaning for you as it helps create a unique feeling with your dog. For instance, naming your dog after an event or something memorable in your life makes them even more relevant to you. Giving dogs human names has also become popular. However, some claim it’s better to revert to common dog names like Spot, Fido or Rover. Check out this article to find out some of the most popular dog names.
Teach Your Dog to Make Eye Contact
You’ve probably heard the saying that “the eyes are a window to the soul’’. In human relationships, eye contact means a lot. This is also true for dog-human relationships.
Maintaining eye contact with your dog would lead to building a strong bond and connection. Aside from helping you engage with them, eye contact lets you into their psyche and helps you know how they might be feeling. Here’s a quick way to get your dog to learn how to make eye contact.
- Flash a tasty treat in front of your dog and wait for the dog to take notice.
- Slowly bring the treat towards the corner of your eye.
- Wait until your dog makes eye contact, then “click and treat.”
- It would require several turns, but once your dog figures out that making eye contact gets them a treat, you’re making headway.
- Rinse and repeat the entire process until your dog gains mastery.
Dogs are extraordinary social creatures. They love to run around and play games all day. If you’re looking to create a strong bond with your dog, games are a no-brainer.
Here are a few ideas:
- Play Frisbee: This advanced game of throw and fetch keeps your dog active and excited all day long. This game can be played both indoors and outdoors.
- Start an Agility Course: You can find a course on the internet or design your own.
- Tug of War: This is an excellent way to liven up your dog. Allowing your dog to win often makes him or her think of you as a fun companion to play with.
Give Your Dog a Treat or a Gift
Nothing says, “you’re special to me,” like a treat. Often unexpected and outside of their routines, giving your pups gifts can make them super excited. Some treats you should consider include – apples, peanut butter popsicles, and blueberries, amongst others.
These treats are sure to make your dog drool over you. However, don’t give treats that would make them obese. Consult your veterinary doctor to find out which treats are suitable for your dog.
You can also adorn your dog with apparel and accessories that give them a stylish look while protecting them at the same time. There are sites like Pet Life that offer collars, crates, and harnesses at affordable prices.
Groom Your Dog
How do humans build bonds? Through care and affection, right? Well, the same is also true for dogs. They can sniff out danger and avoid it. In the same vein, they have an inkling when someone cares for them.
One way to make your dog feel cared for is through touch and grooming. From brushing teeth to cutting nails, grooming is a great way to build a bond with your dog. Give your dog affectionate pats and rubs during grooming sessions. Be kind and gentle about it and listen and observe your dog as you brush its fur or cut its nails. Keep grooming regularly, and soon enough, the dog would realize how much you care.
Spend Quality Time Together
Nothing can replace spending quality time with your dog if you truly want to bond well. Even if your schedule is busy, make time to take your dog on walks. If you’re going on a trip, consider taking your dog along. It might just be the perfect bonding moment.
Go shopping together. There are pet-friendly shops that allow you to enter with your pet. A pet-event or a pet store is undoubtedly an excellent place to visit. If your company allows pets, bring your dog along to work. The more you spend time together, the more you know your dog and vice versa. To move around in such places, it’s vital that your dog wears a leash. A good leash allows you to have control over your dog and to prevent trespassing.
There are science-based reasons snuggles and cuddles with your dog may be a great idea. During cuddles, the brain releases a substance known as Oxytocin. This chemical stimulates love, happiness, trust, and strengthens bonds. Also, cuddles inhibit the production of Cortisol – the hormone responsible for stress and anxiety. Clearly, cuddling is a win-win situation for you and your dog.
However, some dog breeds are more cuddle-friendly than others. Breeds like Pugs, Golden Retrievers, Labradors, and Great Danes are more receptive to cuddles. Study your dog to see whether a cuddle or say, a walk works better.
Teach Your Dog to Do Tricks
There are tons of heartwarming videos of people and their dogs doing tricks. At the heart of it is the special bond they share. From rollover, fetch, spin to kiss and hugs, there are several tricks you can teach your dog. Head over to YouTube and find videos to help you start.
There are several ways to forge a close bond with your dog. These methods include spending time together, grooming, making eye contact, traveling together, and playing games. What’s more important is that you study your dog to know what can make the relationship stronger.
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