why does my dog turn his back to me
I am repeatedly gobsmacked that old school people still think this is a sign of dominance. In rare instances, maybe, but the early comparisons to wolf behaviour lose validity year by year as emerging studies reveal domestication has gone on so long now that dogs really are evolving their own rules as part of successful adaptation to co-habitation with humans. Generalising this behaviour to all dogs as dominance and rejecting it is exactly equivalent to locking a crying baby in a nursery, as used to be advised years ago when we knew far less about psychology and trauma. To do so displays a major problem with affection and bonding, most likely within the person. In the majority of instances, this is exactly what many have written. A display of trust, a checking of proximity, a liking of closeness and affection, a protective watchfulness and the simple pleasure of companion body warmth and togetherness.
Unless the dog gets aggressive if you try to move, celebrate because you have established previous trust. Nurture it, not to make the dog think it is more important than you because a healthy bond is balanced, but to go forward in life together with that ideal connection that dogs are so good at. If you have to shut off and reject, maybe you should choose a reptile our fish in a tank as pets instead. Dogs are very tactile. They reach right to our emotions. As such they can be wonderful teachers. The question is whether the human is ready for that journey. If they are fixated on dominance and issues of disciplining etc. , it says far more about them than the dog. A healthy bond will show strong calm and affectionate human leadership, and the dog will respond to that.
It will sense the inner strength and feel safe alongside it. Aggression is only really likely in cases of previous abuse orwhere the human is overly vulnerable and it erodes the dog s sense of safety over time, causing it to feel it has to defend against everyone or everything. Seriously, this habit is a beautiful thing. If the position annoys you for any reason, just pat on the head and gently reposition to form a new habit of closeness which is preferable. Dogs want to please, ultimately, so you can work together, especially when this habit is displayed.
Can it sometimes beP out of sight out of mind? Maybe the dog wants to escapePall interaction with something he is uneasy about whilst not wanting any kind of conflict.
Yesterday I visited the house of a clientPwith two dogs. One,Pa very large Rhodesian Ridgeback, was clearly uncomfortable so close toPsomeone he didn t know. As he entered the room hePdeliberately turnedPhis head away from me before lying down in his bed in the corner with his face to the wall and his back to me. Out of sight, out of mind as as much out of mind as he could manage anway! FarPfrom being a way of blocking someone out as in the case of the dog I went to yesterday, turning his back, especiallyPbacking into us,PisPmore likely to be a sign of friendliness and showing peaceful intentions. Some people still believe it s the dog trying to show he s Alpha! That is the one thingPwe can be sure it s not. Dog owners often think their dogs are pushy or impolite when they turn their backs to them, sometimes even pushing them.
Nothing could be farther from the truth It s not a sign of dominance as old school trainers may have us believe, it is probably the very opposite. A hip nudge is the behaviour a dog shows when it nudges another with its hip or rear end. Dogs often use this sort of behavior towards people, typically during greeting ceremonies when we show the dog passive friendliness by crouching down to it. The dog will then walk towards us, turn round and either nudge us gently with its hip or rear end, or stand passively with its back turned to us. PTo readP more,. isPone of the many stories of dogs I have been to wherePthe owners have learnt how important it is to be able to interpretPtheir dog s body language correctly. Theo Stewart, The Dog Lady P
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