However, when it comes to emotions and dogs, things are a little more complicated than many people realize. Yes, they can feel and understand emotions on a basic level, but that's where it stops. Scientists and researchers often say that dogs have the emotional capacity of a 2.5-year-old child, which puts things into perspective, if you ask us.
When it comes to approval, things are a little tricky. Every dog is different, but one of the most basic things your pup wants from you is approval and love. Now, is this approval in their eyes the same as we view it? That's the million dollar question.
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Signs Your Dog Feels Approval
Your dog wants to please you and will often do anything to be rewarded by you, which is a type of approval, if you think about it. They sit when you tell them, come, roll over, snuggle with you, and behave well to the best of their ability all with one thing in mind - your love and approval.
So how can you tell if your dog is feeling the love? This should be pretty obvious, but many dogs will wag their tails, look at you with those big, puppy-dog eyes, obey your commands, listen to you, and have an overall relaxed demeanor. Keep in mind that different breeds will show these emotions differently, so it is important to observe your dog and take note of when they appear relaxed, at ease, and far from anxious.
Smaller breeds like chihuahuas, for example, are notorious for being a bit more high strung and have a hard time with new people. They may take quite a bit longer to warm up to you and really want that approval, but when the time comes, you will have the most loyal companion for life!
- Wag tail
- Tail up
- Obeying Commands
- Acting Loyal
- Relaxing Around You
History of Dogs Feeling Approval
Over time, what we have come to understand about dogs has evolved quite significantly, which has not only made us better dog owners, but has turned us into companions to these wonderful creatures at the same time.
Science Behind Dogs Feeling Approval
However, it is important not to run away with this and assume your dog has the same emotional capacity that you do. Dogs can feel these basic, positive emotions, but science has shown that one of the strongest emotions our canine companions experience is distress. So while your dog may be working hard to get your approval, this very act could be stressing them out and causing them some level of discomfort. Our dogs are very special, life-changing animals, but it is important to take the time to better understand them in order to make sure you both are happy and satisfied.
Training Your Dog to Feel Approval
When you first bring a dog into your life, it is important for you to take the necessary time to let them settle in and get used to you. In many cases, it will take a few days, weeks, or even months for your dog to trust you completely. This is especially the case with rescues or dogs that come from an abusive home. With this in mind, your patience, understanding, and support are absolutely critical to how and when your dog will feel approval from you.
It is in their nature to want to please their owner or 'master', and this is evident in the way they interact with you and how they respond to your training efforts. While you can't train a dog to love you, you can start by teaching them basic obedience and began to establish a routine. By doing this, you are showing them that you are committed to their greater good and not going to harm them.
By working on basic obedience as often as possible when you first bring your dog home, you will be helping them to better understand you and your intentions. Do your best to come up with a regular routine and show them the ropes of what your life will be like. From there, they will grow to love you and will want your approval every chance they get.
How to React When Your Dog Seeks Your Approval:
Reward them for obeying you.
Be firm yet loving when they do the wrong thing.
Establish a routine to help your dog avoid stress.
Shower them with love!