I enjoy writing about relationships. I have a yellow lab named Peterson and a cat named Cora.
Help, My Dog Hates My Partner!
It is not uncommon for someone's dog to hate their partner. Often, this can either be a boyfriend, girlfriend, husband, or wife, but a common question that comes up is what to do if your dog really just doesn't like your boyfriend. There may be various reasons that your dog is guarding you. Some dogs feel a need to protect and others may have had a past of bad treatment and simply may not trust men because of this. Find out what is causing this behavior below.
There are various reasons for this behavior. Some of them can be changed with behavior training and other therapies and other times you might have to train your boyfriend on how to interact with your dog and not get bit. Sometimes it can be because your boyfriend just doesn't know how to interact with your dog the right way.
Reasons Your Dog Might Not Trust Your Boyfriend
Some breeds are cautious around new people more than others, although this isn't always true. You can research your dog's breeds and breed traits to figure out what about them makes them click.
1. They Are Protective or Territorial
- Protective: For example, if you have a Rottweiler, you can be sure that this dog might just want to protect you. Other breeds like German Shepherds and dogs that tend to be good at guarding might also be this way.
- Territorial: Some dogs are just simply territorial and won't trust people in the house.
If your breed doesn't like new people, know that it will take some time for them to change. You can also ask your vet about solutions for this kind of behaviour. Sometimes it doesn't have anything to do with your dog's true nature but may have a medical reason. Is your dog fixed? Is she in heat? Does your dog have a painful condition and does your partner touch them too rough?
2. Your Dog Was Abused in the Past
Many times dogs act out in this way towards a boyfriend or a husband because they were abused. This doesn't mean your partner did the abusing but this means that they could have been mistreated by a man or someone that looked like them. So if your dog was abused by a male, they rightfully will not trust your boyfriend or father or brother, etc. It likely will take some time for your dog to get over this. Once they see that your partner or significant other is a good person and can be trusted they will probably change.
According to a survey by the Humane Society, statistics show that men under the age of 30 are the primary people responsible for abusing dogs. If your dog is a rescue with an unknown history, this is a possibility.
3. Your Boyfriend Is Abusing Your Dog
A dog should never be mistreated. This is a real possibility, although you may not want to think about it. You may or may not know about it. If you know about it, you should put a stop to it now. Although this is probably unlikely, how can you tell this is happening?
- Was your boyfriend suddenly mean to your dog or acted rough or aggressive?
- Is your dog scared when they're around your boyfriend and no one else is around?
- Does your boyfriend have a dark past? Did you ever hear about him abusing people, former girlfriends, animals? Does he have a history of fighting?
If you put the pieces together and decide that your boyfriend might be abusing your pet, you need to be really careful about approaching him about it. Often, people who abuse animals will have a tendency to abuse loved ones. If you are certain this is true it's time to break up with him and end the relationship. If you simply cannot think about breaking up with him, you should find a new home for your dog and do the right thing.
4. Your Dog Is Jealous
It's quite possible that your dog is jealous of your boyfriend. Do you spend all of your time with your new man instead of your dog? Naturally, your dog will be jealous. Are you neglecting your dog and not taking them out for walks or to the park that you used to? This is very sad and will definitely have an impact on them. Do not neglect your pets for a relationship.
Your dog might be missing your attention and all the time you used to spend together. Make sure that you leave time and energy for your dog. You can treat your dog to something special or exercise them before you go out on a date. Offer your dog a special treat or toy when your boyfriend comes over. Take care of them and treat them well.
Did you kick your dog off the bed? It is very common for a dog to growl or get protective and stand between two people, often guarding the woman in the relationship from her boyfriend. Get your dog a new dog bed or designated spot and help them identify where their space is. Make sure it is near to you so that they don't feel excluded but not too close to create tension when your boyfriend is near you.
Will This Ruin My Relationship?
You might be wondering if this dynamic will ruin your relationship. Each scenario has to be looked at case by case. In most cases, there is a resolution which we will discuss below. If you have worked through the ideas mentioned above and have determined it's one of those things, proceed with the correct course of action.
- If your dog is territorial, enroll them in a training class with your partner.
- If they are jealous, start taking better care of them.
- If they are being abused, break up with your partner.
Tips on Getting Your Dog to like Your Boyfriend
You can try out some training techniques If, however, your dog is snapping or growling, you might need an expert. You can get seriously injured otherwise. Here's how to start:
- Make sure your boyfriend moves slowly around your dog. This means they should not make startling movements or scary loud noises.
- Some dogs don't like hats or beards or heavy boots. You can have your boyfriend remove these things before entering the house or maybe they will change their facial hair.
- Make sure your boyfriend is always calm around your dog. If your dog is naturally nervous, your dog will be able to sense this and will match the same energy.
- If your dog is being aggressive, don't let your boyfriend try to pet him. This is dangerous and you need a professional.
- Let your dog approach your partner when they want to, don't force it.
- Make sure your boyfriend does not stick his fingers in your dog's face or do anything that puts them at risk of being bit. Let your dog come up and do the sniffing and make sure your partner stays calm. Your dog will realize that it's safe to interact.
- Give your partner special treats (your dog's favorite) and let them offer it to them.
- Make sure your partner respects your dog's territory, toys, and space. If your dog does not want to be approached or is in their crate, for example, leave them alone. Dogs will approach people when they are ready. They can be guarding places like dog beds, food bowls, toys, etc.
- When your boyfriend does approach your dog, make sure their body language is not menacing or intimidating. People are big and can easily scare a dog. He should not be leaning over your dog or wrapping arms around them. Dogs don't like this. Make sure you two study canine behavior and interactions together to know what makes them feel comfortable. Always meet the dog on its level.
My Dog Got Over It
I hope this article helps you come to a solution. I also recommend seeing a professional if things don't get better. I had a dog that was territorial around my significant other. He would hop up on the bed between us when we were just sitting side by side. Eventually, it got better with time.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.
© 2020 Briar Lewis