Owning a dog can be a fun experience. Furthermore, you probably enjoy your dog’s loyalty and overall character. However, sometimes you can’t help but wonder, “Why does my dog follow me everywhere?” You may appreciate the clinginess of your dog, but this can also make you curious about the behavior. Let’s find out about it in this article.
How can you tell if your dog loves you?
There are many ways to tell if your dog loves you. Moreover, different dogs have unique ways of expressing their love for you. You may sometimes see your dog wagging its tail as it greets you happily, or when you see their happy expression every time you go home. Also, some dogs show their love for you by following you wherever you go as they recognize you as their pack leader.
Dogs have a pack mentality that they may include humans as part of their pack. Oftentimes, their master or owner is the pack leader and the dogs are supposed to be followers. Just like any follower, dogs like to please their owners the best way the possibly can and try to be of service when they feel that they can help you with something, though sometimes, it may turn out very different from what you might expect.
Why does my dog follow me everywhere?
Dogs are really good human companions and they can get attached to their humans quickly. Moreover, if you got your dog as a puppy, then it is easier for puppies to imprint on their owners and looks up to them as a parent. Once this happens, a dog may follow you everywhere and may even be the kind of dog that may follow you everywhere, to the point that they can be called “Velcro dogs” by canine experts. There are many reasons why your dogs may follow you everywhere and these are the most common:
They are treating you as the Alpha of the pack
Dogs are pack animals and despite several years of refining and selective breeding, dogs maintained this feral behavior. However, this isn’t a bad thing. Humans often like dogs to be clingy and attached to them. Also, working dogs are more prone to following their owners everywhere to possibly work on command.
Dogs love positive reinforcement and if they get it from you quite often, they are more likely to follow you everywhere you go. It might be because they want more treats, affection, playtime or exercise. Positive reinforcement is a good way to train a dog to do what you want them to do, sometimes even without the need for training collars.
Positive reinforcement is very important during training. Moreover, it strengthens the bond of the owner and the dog, thus the dog begins to follow its owner everywhere. Once there is a strong bond between the owner and the dog, eventually, the dog can be trained to walk off-leash without running away.
Fear of neglect
If you own a rescue dog with some bad experiences with people in the past, they might have developed a fear of neglect. Moreover, if they were abandoned or abused by a human, they might perceive humans as dangerous or a threat to their existence. But, once they meet a loving and caring human owner, it is when rescue dogs can become clingy.
Rescue dogs may have horrible memories in the past. But, if they finally meet a human that can love them and care for them properly, they can get overly attached to that human. Eventually, they also have a fear of neglect and abandonment, so they attempt to always be close to their humans at all times, which may often mean to follow you around everywhere you go.
Some dogs are trained to follow humans during heelwork routines. However, even after heelwork training or routines, a dog may continue to follow you everywhere when they can or even do surprisingly human-like things. If you teach your dog to walk off-leash or do heelwork routines, they are more likely to follow you very often.
Why is my dog acting differently when I’m not around?
Dogs can be really clingy at times, yet understand your absence when you are not around. However, some dogs are predisposed to separation anxiety and they exhibit odd behavior when you are not around. Even though dogs may be clingy enough to follow you everywhere, it doesn’t instantly mean that separation anxiety is evident.
If you think that your dog is exhibiting panic attacks or separation anxiety when you are not around, then that is a behavioral problem and it is not a normal dog behavior. You may correct the behavior by teaching your dog to calm down. Also, you may ask your vet for possible medications to help your dog to calm down when you are not around.
If your dog is following you everywhere when you are home and is just acting normally like a regular dog when you are not around, then it is normal. But, the moment that you step out of the house and your dog begins to act differently, and then your dog might have behavioral issues than needs to be addressed by either a veterinarian or a professional dog trainer.
Why does my dog follow me everywhere? It is one reason to show that your dog loves you and considers you as its pack leader. Moreover, once a puppy actually imprints their owners, they are more likely to follow them until adulthood. There are several other reasons that your dog may follow you everywhere. As long as your dog does not exhibit panic attacks or separation anxiety when you are gone, then you don’t have to worry about your dog following you everywhere.