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Home DOG EVENTSDog Grooming 5 ways to strengthen your bond with your dog that you may not know

5 ways to strengthen your bond with your dog that you may not know

by Bella Woof

Countless books have been published on how new parents can improve their relationships with their children, but there is little information on how to improve their relationships with their pets. This is surprising considering that millennials increasingly prefer “fur babies” to their biological offspring.

Although the U.S. birth rate continues to decline, the survey found that 66 percent of U.S. households now own at least one pet, and only 18 percent have an animal as a companion, according to Statista. This is a significant increase compared to 1988. Meanwhile, another study found that (unsurprisingly) dogs are Americans' favorite pets.

Experts agree that forming a good bond with your dog can lead to a happier, healthier life together, but owners need to be willing to put in the effort to reap the benefits of their dog's affection. there is.

newsweek We spoke to Joe Nutkins, a UK-based Kennel Club certified dog trainer, about his secret ways to improve your relationship with your dog. And it's easier than you think.

UK-based dog behaviorist Joe Nutkins can be seen sitting with his three dogs. Experts exclusively shared five ways to help owners build strong bonds with their dogs.
Provided by/Joe Nutkins/Joe Nutkins

“Whether a puppy or an adult dog, building positive relationships with breeders, shelters, and rehoming dogs will help them feel safe and comfortable on a daily basis and in new situations,” Nutkins said. explained. “Bonding goes both ways, so when a dog bonds with us, we feel joy for the dog's happiness, and at the same time feel the friendship the dog provides us.”

“Without this process, we can end up feeling like our pets aren't really part of our family, and it can take us longer to understand their needs. For dogs, on the other hand, it's hard to bond. It can take a long time to gain trust and a sense of security if you are not able to build “with us,'' she explained.

Here, Nutkins, co-director of UK-based Essex and Suffolk Dog Training, shares his top tips for making your relationship with your pet a first-class one.

Let's spend time alone

man licking dog
Stock image of a dog licking a man's nose. Dog owners are encouraged to remove all distractions to enjoy one-on-one time with their pets.
Magui Fajardo/iStock/Getty Images Plus

You may think you're spending a lot of time with your dog, but is it really quality time? Maybe you're scrolling through social media while your dog is lying at your feet. Nutkins advises against doing this.

She says, “By spending one-on-one time with our dogs, our attention is completely focused on one dog at a time, and not on others, checking our phones or watching TV.” “You don't have to look at them, and the bond you share with your dog deepens. What do we do with that time?” It depends on your dog's preferences. Some dogs prefer playtime, while others prefer massages and grooming time. ”

Go for a walk in a quiet place

“Walking together is a great way to bond with your dog,” Nutkins said. “Consider finding a quiet place to park, get ready, and walk together.”

To get the most out of your time with your pet, Nutkins advises going for walks with few distractions.

She suggests choosing a “favorite spot” or taking a scenic walk along the river.

“If you find a path without bridles and walk through quiet countryside, there will be fewer interruptions,” she added.

try a new activity

woman playing with dog
Stock image of a woman playing frisbee. It's important to add variety to your dog's routine. This may include playing games or working on agility.
Orezzo/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Going for a walk isn't the only thing to do with your dog, there are many other options.

“Another way to strengthen your bond with your dog is to try activities with your dog,” advises Nutkins. This may include attending a dog-friendly fitness class, playing fetch or soccer, or training your dog new tricks.

“Working on things together builds a bond as we guide and praise the dog, and the dog gives us attention and enjoys it,” Nutkins said.

be patient

Especially if your pet is new to your home, being patient will help your pet feel more comfortable.

Nutkins said newsweek: “Patience is one of the greatest gifts we can give our dogs, and it can form the greatest bond. We love helping our dogs settle into their new homes. Sometimes we inadvertently rush the process by asking questions, we take in more dogs than the dog is ready for, or we notice that our dog is nervous around new people, so we ask him if it's okay. We want to encourage visitors to meet us to show them.

“Giving your dog time to explore something new, choosing to meet visitors even from a distance, allowing him to potty train and use ear drops, etc. It helps us to know that people trust us and that we know who we are, and this builds the strongest bonds. ”

Be positive

man with dog
Stock image of a smiling elderly man petting a golden retriever. Nutkins says owners with positive attitudes are more likely to bond with their dogs.
Monkey Business Images/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Dogs can bring endless joy to their owners' lives, but they can also cause stress to their owners in some cases. As with when your dog is destructive or not reaching milestones, this is just part of the fun of being a dog owner. Nutkins advises owners to “inject positivity into everything” to make the most of their time with their pets.

She says, “When we provide positive encouragement, feedback and guidance, dogs feel happier and less disruptive.

“It's easy for us as caregivers to become discouraged when our dogs aren't making progress in settling in, gaining confidence, or learning the new skills we're teaching them. It's easy to show body language or try to do something.'' Accelerating this process can make your dog back off even more and make him feel anxious.

“We've all had the experience of having to leave the house for an appointment and our dog gets fussy and ends up yelling, 'Stop being silly and let's go!' ”

“Or they get home and find out their pup had an accident, and they take a big sigh, shrug their shoulders, and say something like, 'Oh, great, we've got to clean this up.' Dogs see our body language, feel our emotions, and hear disappointment or frustration in our voices, which causes worry and confusion in the dog, and each time the bond breaks down a little bit more.

“So before you react to anything, try to take a deep breath and pause for a moment. Think about what your dog is trying to tell us, what they're struggling with, and use aggressive Guide your dog through training, body language, praising him when he does something, etc.” Great, and watch that bond grow and grow. ”

Do you have a funny or adorable video or photo of your pet you'd like to share? Send it to [email protected] with details about your best friend. It could be featured in this week's pet lineup.