How to approach an unknown dog?

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Normally when we see a dog we want to get closer to touch it, hug it or play with it. However, each dog has a different personality, so while some are very trusting and sociable, others are more reserved and do not like contact with people they do not know..

If we pounce on any furry without knowing what your reaction will be It can cause your child to get nervous, run away, or become aggressive. That is why at AnimalWised we want to teach you the basic guidelines so that you know how to approach an unfamiliar dog without weighing you down or taking risks.

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Corporal lenguage

Before approaching an unfamiliar dog, it is very important that we know how to interpret canine body language. Dogs are very expressive animals and according to their attitude we can know if It is convenient or not to approach to the.

If you should approach:

  • Has a relaxed and calm posture.
  • The tail remains relaxed, never between the legs or up.
  • Sniff your surroundings calmly.
  • Avoid our gaze and behave correctly.
  • If we get closer little by little and talk to him, he wags his tail.
  • Is interested in people and seeks social contact in a positive way.

You should not approach:

  • Try to run away from you or hide behind its owner.
  • He turns his head and avoids you constantly.
  • Licks and yawns.
  • Has narrowed eyes.
  • Bristle the loin.
  • Show your teeth and growl.
  • His ears and tail are taut.

Approaching an unfamiliar dog

Every time we see a dog, we want to pet it and make friends with it. But although dogs are social animals, it is not always known how to approach an unfamiliar dog and on many occasions we make mistakes. Here are the keys to approach a dog you do not know:

  1. Ask the dog owner if you can come closer. He will know better than anyone if your dog is sociable or, if on the contrary, he is more shy and does not like to be approached.
  2. Approach slowly, without running, giving the dog time to see that we are approaching and not be caught by surprise. It is preferable that we do not approach frontally or from behind, but from the side.
  3. Don't look him straight in the eye for a long time, since the dog can interpret it as a threat to their own safety or that of their owner.
  4. Before approaching, speak in a high-pitched tone, in a relaxed and pleasant way, that does not feel that you are scolding or saying something bad, it should be all positive.
  5. It is important not to invade personal space of the dog, so when we are at a safe distance we will bring our hand closer to him and show him our palms, so that he can smell them and become familiar with us. It is also useful to let them understand that we do not have food or anything hidden. Keep in mind that many dogs, just like people do, do not like to be invaded their space so you should totally avoid jumping on it, covering it over it or touching any part of its body unexpectedly.
  6. If the dog accepts your company, it will approach by itself. and it will start to smell you. At this time you can start caressing him slowly and calmly so as not to exalt him. You can start by stroking around the neck. Remember that if it does not come close you should not force it and that you should never cover it over it.
  7. If you smell quietly, you can bend over to be at their height and to make you feel more comfortable. In addition, you should not put your knees or hands on the ground, so that if the dog has an unexpected attitude, you can react in time..
  8. Never hug him or give him kisses. Contrary to what people think, dogs do not like being hugged, since that blocks them and does not let them escape, so they feel stressed.
  9. Spend kind words on him and caress him gently, remember that although some dogs are very rough, others are very delicate and hard patting on the back is not friendly.
  10. Reinforce positive interactions, how to be calm or allow him to be manipulated and, on the contrary, never scold him or have a surly attitude with him, do not forget that he is not your dog.

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