Doesn’t it seem like dogs are hungry all the time? Do they follow you from room to room? Additionally, humans can derive great benefit from that companionship too. For this reason it is easy to see why dogs like to follow our every move. A potentially obvious reason your dog may follow you around is that dogs are highly food motivated, and you are their gateway to food! This may be a reason your old dog suddenly acts more clingy. https://www.akc.org/wp-admin/admin-ajax.php. iy_2021; im_01; id_10; ih_19; imh_45; i_epoch:1610336741249, py_2020; pm_12; pd_13; ph_23; pmh_03; p_epoch:1607929433690, link-block-publisher; link-block-publisher_link-block-publisher; bodystr, pn_tstr:Sun Dec 13 23:03:53 PST 2020; pn_epoch:1607929433690. Download this e-book to get the explanations behind some of the strangest canine behaviors. Because dogs respond to their owners’ behavior, it’s important to examine your relationship with your canine. In the first case, the adoptive owner is most likely the first person who’s ever shown the dog any sort of love … You stumble out of bed, half asleep, to make that oh-so-necessary cup of coffee and nearly fall flat on your face because your dog is following you a little too closely. Even when you go into the kitchen and bathroom? What was their life like before they came to live with you? If your dog is laying around all day with nothing exciting to do, he may focus more on you and tend to follow you around more—especially if that is the only action going on around him. Read below to find out. Even if they’ve just been fed, they’ll still take … Our content and products are for informational purposes only. Dogs are really good human companions and they can get attached to their humans quickly. “If every time you are with your dog, he gets affection or treats, he’s likely to [follow you around] more often,” Dr. Barrack says. These dogs seem to learn all the smallest cues, such as when you're about to get up and go to the kitchen, bathroom, or wherever you're heading. While other breeds are “velcro dogs,” sticking like glue to their pet parents. While they’re both associated with not wanting to be away from an owner, there are some distinct yet subtle differences between these two forms of behavior. Providing your dog with food-filled toys, treat dispensers, and puzzle toys helps to stimulate his brain and helps to alleviate boredom. Why Does My Dog Follow Me Everywhere?As dog owners, we love spending quality time with our pups.. As a pet parent, your pup might see you as the leader of the pack. Sign up for our newsletter to stay in-the-know. Your dog may also begin following you around to tell you he doesn’t feel well or is sick. The focus is on that person because of what they give access to.”. But why do dogs follow you everywhere? When you are present, your dog feels safe and secure. You stumble out of bed, half asleep, to make that oh-so-necessary cup of coffee and nearly fall flat on your face because your dog is following you a, Following Behavior in Dogs: Why it Happens, Dogs were first domesticated at least 15,000 years ago (. Food. I should mention he doesn’t have separation anxiety—though he’d obviously like to accompany me everywhere. Why does my German Shepherd follow me everywhere? If you brought home your dog before the age of about 12 weeks, he most likely imprinted on you, seeing you as a parent-type figure. They went from being wolves living in packs to dogs living in packs with humans. Herding dogs, including Border Collies and Labrador Retrievers, were bred to follow human orders to perform specific jobs. Frequently puppies will pursue their owners if their bond is combined after some time with a lot of support. There are various approaches owners can take to help their dog should he exhibit these traits. Dogs will often follow their humans around because they receive attention or some other form of reward in return for this behavior. Rottweilers were used for cattle herding many … All rights reserved. Possible reasons your dog follows you everywhere are that it is looking for attention, it wants something like food, separation anxiety or you might have been rewarding the behavior. Dogs are pack animals. They went from being wolves living in packs to dogs living in packs with humans. But there have been days when you might have wondered, “Why does my dog follow me everywhere?” The answer has to do with your dog’s animal instinct and pack mentality. Q: My dog, Sam, a seven-year-old rescue I adopted one year ago, follows me around everywhere. If your dog is normally pretty independent, but all of a sudden becomes excessively clingy, it’s time for a trip to your veterinarian. Many dogs are scared of certain noises, like fireworks or thunderstorms, and may cling to their pet parents during these times. While velcro dogs are constantly glued to their owner’s hip, dogs with true separation anxiety become anxious and panic when they’re away from their owners. Most people will find this behavior endearing. “Your dog may follow you everywhere simply because they like you and want to spend time with you!” Dr. Tu said. 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 … While the thought of your dog following you everywhere might seem cute and lovable, it can be an indication that something else is going on. Why Do Some Dogs Follow You Everywhere? The answer has to do with your dog's animal instinct and pack mentality.. Canine companions that exhibit this type of behavior are often referred to as “Velcro dogs” because of their desire to be attached to your side. Plus, bathrooms tend to have open garbage cans filled with tissues and other waste products that dogs enjoy sniffing through and tearing up. This will save you from further problems in the future since clinginess may lead to behavioral issues. However, if shadowing behavior becomes excessive it may become annoying and can be dangerous to you or your dog if the behavior causes you to trip. Most dog owners have experienced some variation of this scenario at some point or another, and, for some, it may even be a daily occurrence. Here are some reasons, and what you can do if it gets to be too much. There are actually a number of reasons why your dog might be doing it and it could be a combination of factors. Another reason your dog might stay close to your side is positive reinforcement. As such, it is very common for rescue dogs to follow their new ‘best friend’ around. You have questions, we have answers. Often dogs will follow their owners if their bond is paired over time with a great deal of reinforcement. Separation anxiety is a very common behavioral disorder, with one study finding a prevalence of 17 percent in a large population of dogs (. If you notice your dog going through the bathroom garbage, add a lid or keep the door closed! Your dog feels most at ease when he or she is with their pack. Your dog may follow you around because she is simply lonely or under stimulated. Why do our dogs follow us around? “Dogs are pack animals, and we are their pack,” says Sally Morgan, an author and holistic physical therapist for pets and people. Interactions with our dogs are a constant voyage of discovery for both of us. Instead, try ignoring the undesired behavior and reward your dog by giving him a treat or scratches when he settles down onto his bed or takes his attention off of you to play with a toy. “Young puppies (anywhere from birth to 6 months of age) can often imprint on their owners and look to them as they would their mother,” says Dr. Barrack. When pet parents make a big deal about arriving home and leaving the house, this can worsen anxiety behaviors. Another thing that pet parents should do is evaluate if they are reinforcing their pup’s behavior. Dogs love people. They crave companionship. Dogs with separation anxiety tend to follow their pet parents excessively and feel frantic or they panic when left alone. You can help decrease how much your dog follows you around by making sure he receives plenty of daily exercise. Many dogs follow their people because they are anxious and insecure. Either way, it assists to understand some of the science behind why your dog might be constantly at your side. Reasons Why Your Dog Goes After You All Over The House. “You might think you’re the cool one, but the person your dog is attached to is the road to everything wonderful and magical. Have you ever wondered why? As dogs become old or geriatric, it is very common for them to develop symptoms of cognitive dysfunction syndrome (CDS), also known as “doggie dementia.” CDS is caused by a degeneration of the brain and common symptoms include disorientation, change in sleep-wake cycles, and anxiety behaviors. AND a $500 SHOPPING SPREE at Muttropolis! She enjoys educating pet parents on the latest research and emerging therapies in veterinary medicine. It’s not uncommon for certain breeds to over-attach to their owners, particularly dogs in the working or herding groups that are bred to work side by side with their humans. Besides having tasty treats in your pockets, your dog may be following you around for the following reasons: Dogs remember their daily routines and if you always feed your pup at the same time of day or go for a walk at seven in the morning every morning, he will get excited around those times and will likely follow your every move in anticipation of his reward. Puppies will typically follow their two-legged parents very closely and may do so less once they mature and become more confident in different situations. “Just make sure that in the process you do not limit their social interactions with other dogs and people. Whatever the cause is, you must train your dog to be more independent. While frequently following you is quite normal for a social animal like dogs, it could be part of an underlying issue you may not be aware of if their behavior seems a … For instance, they had experienced something awful in the past. And it made them want to be near their owners all the time. Dogs will often follow their humans around because they receive attention or some other form of reward in return for this behavior. Dr. Liz McCalley is a medical director for a small animal practice in San Diego. Elderly dogs are more prone to developing illnesses and chronic conditions so any new behavior could also be the signal of a medical problem. Separation anxiety is a very common behavioral disorder, with one study finding a prevalence of 17 percent in a large population of dogs (2). [This socialization will help] prevent anxiety when you are separated.” If you’re having trouble with your pup’s clingy behavior, consider consulting a professional dog trainer. Dogs were first domesticated at least 15,000 years ago (1). And you keep asking yourself why does my dog follow me everywhere? Most of the time your dog’s shadowing behavior is nothing to worry about. Medication Problem. Canine companions that exhibit this type of behavior are often referred to as “Velcro dogs” because of their desire to be attached to your side. Why Does Your Dog Follow You Everywhere? If your dog can’t seem to stop following you everywhere, it may be heading into “abnormal” territory. That’s right, dogs will stalk you even if you aren’t a celebrity. “Bonding with your dog is good for you,” says Dr. Barrack. If your dog suddenly starts following you everywhere, try following him back and see if he is trying to lead you somewhere, like outside to go to the bathroom or to an empty water bowl. “Those previous experiences have an impact on a dog and can contribute to the lingering fear of abandonment,” says Dr. Barrack. Now, let’s go straight to the point. Should You Be Concerned About Your Dog Following You. Founded in 1884, the AKC is the recognized and trusted expert in breed, health, and training information for dogs. Sometimes it’s the primary caregiver who provides food and walks or the fun-time human who plays tug of war, a game of catch, or hands out endless amounts of treats. Does your dog watch you constantly and follow you everywhere you go? Let our authors & experts know what you think. While an increase in shadowing behavior may be due to a behavioral or environmental issue, it could be a sign of an underlying medical condition. If your dog follows you around continuously, you’ll likely either find it extremely capitivating or you’ll be tired of almost tripping over him all the time. All Rights Reserved 2021. But it should serve as a wake-up call to address the behavior before it reaches the point where your dog can not function without you in the picture. As Kramer points out, one of the problematic things about behavior is the many factors that influence it. If no medical issues are detected, and you’d like to give your dog more independence, your veterinarian may be able to recommend a trainer or behavior specialist who can help you address or modify your dog’s following behaviors. In some cases, that fear can cause real damage to the dog both mentally and physically. Humans and dogs have a mutually beneficial relationship, each providing the other with companionship. So why does your dog follow you everywhere? Our dogs see us as their protectors and staying near to us helps to calm them and make them feel safe. Toy breeds, such as Chihuahuas, were mostly bred to be our little friends. The big difference between separation anxiety and being a velcro dog is anxiety itself. You just recently fed him so it can’t be possible that he’s suddenly hungry after just 3 minutes. Access our library of professional veterinarian resources. So when your dog is following you everywhere, it means he really likes you and wants to be near you. One of the biggest reasons that humans bred dogs was for companionship. They've spent centuries serving as companions to humans, and that's something most of them really love to do. While velcro dogs are more susceptible to developing separation anxiety, it doesn’t automatically mean they will. Although it doesn’t necessarily mean they will, Velcro dogs are more likely to develop separation anxiety. Do dogs think if they stalk us that there is a chance that they might get fed? For these dogs, following you around all the time is not healthy and is a symptom of a greater problem. If you’re flattered by this true sense of affection, and unknowingly reward your dog for his clingy behavior, you’re sending him a message that it’s welcome. AKC actively advocates for responsible dog ownership and is dedicated to advancing dog sports. For instance, if a puppy discovers that beneficial things, for example, food, pats, and fun exercises originate from a specific individual, they might be … But there have been days when you might have wondered, “Why does my dog follow me everywhere?” The answer has to do with your dog’s animal instinct and pack mentality. Are you staring at your dog and petting him when he is following you around? In households consisting of multiple people, there’s a good chance your dog will become fixated on one person in particular. That’s why The Dodo reached out to Dr. Andrea Tu, medical director at Behavior Vets NYC, to find out a little bit more. Interceptor is a trademark of Elanco or its affiliates. Many dogs seem to love (or even need) to follow their owners around. This will also distract his energy away from you. Your dog may follow you to find out what is going on, because she doesn’t want to miss out on anything. Dogs with separation anxiety can show destructive and harmful behaviors, usually only when left alone. Any change in their routine like a change in the … 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. And is this behavior normal? Why Does My Dog Follow Me Everywhere? An unpleasant smell for us is likely an intriguing smell for our dogs. Humans aso provide dogs with food, shelter, and safety. Great Pet Media does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, It’s six o’clock in the morning. Dogs with separation anxiety tend to follow their pet parents excessively and feel frantic or they panic when left alone. Also, what are the benefits of having a velcro dog and how to reduce the dog’s clinginess? If following their pet parent around leads to treats, play time, or pets, dogs will remember and perform the behavior more frequently. If you notice that your dog is either too clingy or staying in isolation, it could be … Could these signs be an indication that your dog has separation anxiety? It doesn’t even have to be around meal time — dogs will happily accept food at any time and will follow you around in hopes that more food is on the way. When pet parents make a big deal about arriving home and leaving the house, this can worsen anxiety behaviors. He even waits outside the bathroom door. ). Answer a few simple questions and find the right dog for you, Compare up to 5 different breeds side by side, Browse the AKC Marketplace to find the right puppy for you, Browse our extensive library of dog names for inspiration, Find out the best and worst foods for your dog and which to avoid. It’s six o’clock in the morning. Dogs are more routine conscious. However, if this behavior becomes excessive or annoying to you, there are some things you can try at home to help limit your dog’s clingy behavior. By just devoting a little more time to playtime each day, you may be able to curtail her tendency to follow you around. Rottweilers are One of the Oldest Herding Breeds. He just might be trying to get you to notice something. ). And, when it becomes a problem? They tend to bond very closely with one person and will likely follow in their human parents’ footsteps. Try taking your dog for longer walks and making sure you get in … Is his attachment to me indicative of some sort of issue? Maybe you really do look like Justin Bieber, but that's probably not why this fan is following you. According to Dr. Rachel Barrack, a licensed veterinarian certified in both veterinary acupuncture and Chinese herbology with Animal Acupuncture in New York City, there are scientific reasons behind dogs’ clingy behavior. Many dogs will follow their owners around due to boredom. Do not scold your dog for following you around because this can lead to fear and may also reinforce the behavior as a result of you giving your dog attention when the behavior is performed. This is reinforcing his behavior because you are rewarding the behavior with your attention. A bored dog can become destructive and frustrated, so it's important to give your pup proper mental stimulation. Owning a velcro dog that follows you from room to room can become a bit frustrating, especially when you repeatedly trip over them! © The American Kennel Club, Inc. 2020. It could be anything from separation anxiety, boredom, companionship, or lack of attention. “ your dog may follow you around by making sure he receives plenty daily! Sense of smell and are often intrigued by the odors coming from bathrooms for,... May do so less once they mature and become more confident in different situations a small animal practice San! 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