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My dog follows me everywhere: is this normal?

My dog follows me everywhere: is this normal?

Why does my dog follow me everywhere? This is a question that many dog owners ask themselves. And in some cases, this closeness can be a little exaggerated and become a problem. If your dog follows you everywhere and depends on you completely, what happens when he has to stay home alone? 

We'll explain why dogs tend to follow us around, and what to do about it if it's a problem for you.


The dog, an animal dependent on man


Dogs follow us everywhere because, unlike cats, they are very close to us. This behavior is normal since the dog is a social and dependent animal. Because of their devoted nature, dogs have been assigned several roles with humans: guard dog, herding dog, hunting dog, etc.

They have thus learned to stay by our side, to watch over us, and to help us in our daily lives.

It is therefore logical that our dogs are never far from us.

Nowadays we consider our dogs as members of the family rather than as working aids. The relationship between the master and his pet is becoming closer and closer. Our dogs develop affection for us and spend their days observing our habits. For the dogs, we are both a landmark and a source of food. They are totally dependent on us.

Following us around is a sign of affection and appreciation, but in some cases it can also be a sign of a behavioral disorder. 

 

My dog follows me everywhere, why is this a problem?


Why do dogs follow us around? As mentioned above, dogs used to have a role to play with us, and that's one of the reasons they need to have us around. 

Their affection for us also leads them to seek our company.  

But, this quest for attention and need to follow us wherever we go can become overwhelming.


Indeed, some dogs are anxious when they are alone. They are victims of hyper-attachment, a behavioral disorder also called separation anxiety. This behavioral disorder can lead to undesirable behaviors such as littering, destruction, barking, and self-mutilation. This can lead to major problems.

A dog suffering from hyper-attachment is unable to calm down when his owner is not present. He is then in a state of great stress. This is very harmful to him and if he has this behavioral disorder, it is important to take action by calling a canine behaviorist.

Dogs that have been cuddled too much can also be made to follow you around the house. In this case, the owner has unconsciously reinforced this proximity behavior. For example, when you notice that your puppy or dog wants to join you in the bathroom, you can show your affection and pet him or speak softly to him. Your pet will take this as encouragement and think you are happy with him. 

When we adopt a puppy or a dog, we spend a lot of time with it, whether it's training it, walking it or playing with it. And we forget that sometimes we have to leave him alone, even if it is difficult. But detachment is necessary. Mothers distance themselves from their children at some point so that they can learn to be independent and fend for themselves. It's the same thing when you adopt a dog.


How do I get my dog to stop following me around?


If your dog follows you wherever you go and can't stay on his own, it's time to take action. Hyper-attachment is not good for your dog, and it's best to avoid it. The solution is to detach, just as the bitch does with her puppies. 

Here are some steps you can take to get your dog to detach from you:

  • Teach your dog to go to his basket, and send him there from time to time.
  • Teach him the "don't move" command. You will progressively lengthen the duration of the exercise, and the difficulty by going further and further. Also work on the "don't move" by placing yourself in a place where your doggie can no longer see you. He must remain calm and wait quietly.
  • Make your absences positive moments, for example by enriching your dog's environment with occupation toys. Take your dog for a walk just before leaving so that he is tired.
  • Avoid ritualizing your departure, which means not saying "goodbye" to your dog before you leave. Go out as if you will be back in a short time. Remember that dogs don't really have a sense of time.
  • Remember to teach your dog to be alone gradually. Start by leaving for a few moments, then for longer and longer periods. Praise him well if he behaves while you're away.
  • Ignore your dog when he comes to beg for a treat. You should decide when to cuddle your dog.

All these learnings are necessary so that your dog can leave the hyper attachment. You can complete these measures with a food complement for relaxing dog (RELAX) which will help your loulou to remain zen during your absences.

You can do this step alone, or be helped by a canine educator if you can't do it, or if the problem has become too big.


In conclusion, it's normal for your dog to never be far from you. But, if he follows you every step of the way (including the bathroom and toilet), it's time to take action to prevent him from developing a behavioral disorder. Don't hesitate to get help from a dog trainer and use herbal medicine to help you.

Does your dog tend to follow you around? Tell us about it in comments!

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