Do dogs get jealous? The answer is definitely YES!
In this article, we will tell me what is dog jealousy and why do dogs get jealous. And then, we will show 9 common dog jealous behaviors and teach you how to solve them.
So, let’s check it out!
It is often irresistible to ignore our dogs when they are jealous. When their puppy wants something and does not get it, they begin to act in a certain way to receive what they want. This wish can be your attention, a delicious prize, or your favorite toy.
We often fall into the temptation to give our puppy the attention he so desires, and this only generates that your little four-legged associate that kind of behavior with a prize, be it your attention, a prize, or a toy. It is called positive reinforcement – but it is also possible to reinforce negative behaviors. If your hairy finally gets what he wants, he learns to behave in this way to get his prize.
Dogs always seek our attention in many ways. It can be through a look or a lick, a bark or an annoying cry, even through aggressive behavior.
What Is Dog Jealousy?
Recent academic studies have shown that our four-legged best friend DO have some jealous behaviors like pushing, growling, barking, or even biting. So although we do not exactly know whether our dogs have the same emotions as us, it’s more likely that they would experience jealousy in a way.
The better way to exactly understand dog jealous behaviors is that your dog is protecting and competing with others for what they value, desire, and want most, such as your love, food, affection, and attention in most cases and reality.
Why Do Dogs Get Jealous?
For the dog, everything you gave is all to be cherished, such as attention, food, touch, and even cuddling-it is an instinct. However, one day, when you have changed something, they feel insecure, start acting jealous and seek more attention from you.
In general, if dogs get jealous, it may be caused by varieties of changes:
- New routine
- New pets
- Insufficient attention
- Insufficient exercise
- New people in the home
- New baby or child
- New neighborhood and living environment
Signs of a Jealous Dog:
Since they can not communicate using words, it can be complicated for us to understand what they are trying to tell us.
You must know your dog, its sounds, and other ways to communicate with you to understand their needs. Also, you must establish yourself as the family leader in your home and know how to reward the types of behavior you want your dog to acquire.
Dogs show jealousy in any situation, but these are the most common:
1. Growl and bark:
Your dog will growl and bark at another pet, family member, or friend who approaches or walks by you.
2. Pushy behavior:
Suppose you pay more attention to another dog, your family member, or your friends than your dog, or you have coffee with friends. In that case, it will push them out of the way to get your attention.
3. Stand close to you:
As you meet your friends or other pets, your dog starts telltale whining at your feet, cuddling up close to you, and trying to get in the middle of both, or sit up on its hind legs and try to get your attention. If your dog is jealous, it can be very demanding and demand that you pay attention to it and anyone else.
The aggressive behavior is frequently manifested as biting or attacking other animals or people if they approach something your dog wants.
For example, it could happen when you are sitting on the couch, and your family member or friends walk to you and sit down next to you, or another dog approaches their favorite toys.
This aggressive behavior serves as a warning to a third party and seeks the other away from “what does not belong.”
5. Unusual dog routines:
The jealous behavior of the dogs is not as apparent as we thought. Because they can’t say any words to express their feelings and always use other ways to tell us. So, it’s not surprising if you see your trained dog suddenly pee or poop indoors. It is a way of expressing their jealousy.
6. Doing tricks:
Dogs are clever creatures, especially those trained dogs. The trained dogs have quickly learned that doing tricks, such as lifting the leg, often attracts their owners’ attention and also receive awards for it.
So if you are with your friends and your dog is desperate to get your attention, he may perform tricks to get what he wants: your full attention.
7. Walking away:
Suppose your dog is envious of someone else’s attention. In that case, it may not be necessary to manifest its jealousy violently. When a dog moves away or leaves the room, you are in, and it may mean that you are in a state of sadness and discontent.
8. Excessive grooming:
Indirect behaviors like excessive grooming may be another sign of jealousy. Grooming is one of your dog’s ways of dealing with their worries if they are troubled by a new family member. In some ways, it is an effective way to self-soothe when they deal with new stresses at home.
9. Change in diet:
Another indirect behavior of jealousy is changing daily eating habits like under or overeating. For example, suppose your dog competes with other dogs and people for your affection. In that case, it may become nervous and anxious, impacting its daily appetite.
If you find your dog has those jealous behaviors we mentioned above, you should check for any life changes.
How to Help A Jealous Dog?
1. Better routine:
Dogs are habitual creatures, and regularity is everything to them.
However, one day, if something is absent from their life and as a result of the addition of a new person or other pets, you should give them something else to do at certain times to make them appear as they are still following old routines, such as playing with other dogs, going on a walk, training, or whatever else your dog enjoys. This measurement will reduce their jealousy feeling and behavior.
Suppose they do not get used to the new routine. In that case, it’s probably better to recover to their old way as much as possible, which will make them feel comfortable and lead to better behavior.
2. Jealousy for a new pet or another dog:
The key is to make both of you feel as important to you and strengthen the bond between your two pets. Here are some tips to avoid that jealousy:
- Give attention to your two dogs equally, and don’t give one pet too much attention at the expense of another. Take them out together, pet them, and play with both. It will prevent either of you from feeling isolated and will help build a good relationship between them.
- Best to have at least two of all toys and beds to avoid conflict when your dogs play. It would be best if you kept Food-based toys out of the house unless you supervise them.
- If your dog is protective of their food, feed them in different rooms to avoid them feeling competing and conflicting during mealtimes.
- Walk your dogs together, and there is no better way to connect than being outside and learning to play and socialize with other dogs together.
- Do training sessions with both dogs at the same time. It will make them feel that you are giving them the exact time equally. Make sure you give both dogs prizes at the same time to avoid conflicts over food.
- Always reward your little successes when they act appropriately, like sitting quietly next to each other, giving them attention, and giving them both prizes.
3. Regular exercise and training:
If dogs are not getting enough exercise, such as going to the dog park and playing with other dogs or just taking a walk regularly, they may feel jealous. In addition, the lack of exercise may cause them to become restless and act out.
To make them happy and not show jealousy, you should spend more time taking your dogs outside for exercise and training, even it is just 20-minute sessions.
The daily exercise routine will make them burst up their excessive energy. The obedience and socialization training is good at establishing your leadership for them, which would improve the jealous situation, and train your dog to feel secure in their crate to enjoy their “time out” session.
4. Jealousy for a family member or other people:
If your puppy is jealous of a family member, the problem may be because there is no relationship between them. Some tips for managing dog jealousy about your family member or other people:
- Reward good behaviors, for example, if they manage to keep quiet when you are in the company of other people or a member of your family.
- Your puppy needs to see that good and funny things can happen when another person is present. It will help your dog to associate with other people positively, let your family member prepare your dog’s food as if it were another provider of positive experiences.
- If your puppy growls or pushes people when they approach, you should signal that this is unacceptable. Your dog must be clear about who is in charge. To do this, you can take away your prize, which in most cases, you are. When you show annoying behaviors or when you want to get attention, you must ignore it completely.
5. Jealousy for a baby or child:
The arrival of a baby may be a magical and memorable time for you and your family and be very confusing and overwhelming for your dog. Your dog must need to understand that he must respect your baby as he respects you, nor would your baby be your furry playmate.
Below, you can see some suggestions for preventing your dog’s jealousy towards your baby:
- Prevent your dog from entering your baby’s room weeks before your arrival. In this way, your dog will not feel left out because of your baby’s new addition at home.
- Do not move your four-legged best friend away from the baby. Because this will make your furry feel that they are in competition and that he should feel threatened by him. Involve him in your family life and avoid feeling nervous when they are together. If you feel stressed or tense, your dog may feel it too and may think there is a reason to be anxious.
- Help your baby connect with your dog by compensating and rewarding good behavior. Offer prizes when they are lying next to each other or playing quietly together in the same room. And your dog will realize that good things can happen when he is calm and relaxed around the baby.
- Do not leave your baby and your dog together alone. You will never know how your puppy could react without supervision and could ruin all the effort you put into their training.
- You should not allow your dog to play with your baby’s toys. Your puppy has thousands of bacteria in its mouth that could be harmful to your baby’s health. If your dog takes the baby’s toys because it seeks your attention, remove the toy and wash your baby’s toys with soap and water before they play with them again.