“HELP! I want my dog & partner to get along!!”
First things first, you aren’t the first nor the last person to be in this situation. Dogs are funny in this way, they often form their own opinions on people and things. The good news is that with a little work, their opinions are easy to change!
Start off with trying to understand why your dog is acting the way that they are, and there are many potential reasons and some solutions!
Yes! Believe it or not dogs do get jealous, and this is usually their reason for hostility toward your significant other. Think about it - as the primary caretaker, your dog is used to it just being the two of you. Maybe you’ve started to spend a lot of your time with a new partner. Perhaps you’ve accidentally been neglecting your dog without realizing (ex. less time on walks, less frequent visits to the dog park etc.)
The solution for this is simple - your dog is just missing their time with you. All you need to do to reverse this is to consciously set aside a reasonable amount of time everyday for you to reconnect with your dog. During the time that you do spend with your dog, try to make sure most of it is one-on-one and make it a point to be extra affectionate
- Dog is Responding to Hostility
No – your partner is not doing this on purpose. If your partner is not used to being around dogs, they may not understand how the little things they do can be interpreted as hostile behavior.
The solution is again simple, you must train your partner!
o Let your dog approach your partner. Let them sniff and work their way around your partner without your partner trying to pet them right away.
o Even just leaning forward can cause your dog to react fearfully. Show your partner how to adopt a neutral stance.
o Most importantly - be patient. It takes time for dogs to warm up to new people.
o Allow your partner to feed your dog their favorite TRATEZ - this will definitely help win them over!
Many people mistakenly classify specific breeds as protective in their nature when that’s not exactly true. All dogs become protective of not only you as their owner, but also their toys and space as well.
The solution to this can be simple, or it can require you to get more help.
o Talk to your partner about your dog’s protectiveness and establish some boundaries while your dog is present.
o Do not approach your dog when they are in their crate or bed. Dogs will come out of their zone and come to you when they are ready for interaction.
o If you know your dog is territorial with their toys then it isn’t a good idea for them to try to engage with them using their toys. Instead, have your partner offer your dog TRATEZ to establish trust.
o Lastly – keep in mind that this behavior needs to be addressed. Be sure to bring this up with your vet and/or trainer to figure out if there are any underlying issues which require further attention.
Rest assured, it will be okay! Just like with anything in life – this too will require a bit of work, but having your two favorite companions in life get along will definitely be worth it.