If you have a shy dog that lacks confidence, your pup probably isn’t getting as much fun out of his life as he should be.
In this guide, we share some top tips and tricks that can help your shy pup put the enjoyment back into his life by becoming more confident.
Crate Train Your Shy Dog
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Your dog will feel more confident and secure if you train him to love his crate.
The crate creates a den-like environment where your shy furry friend can relax and chill out or get away from a busy household when he wants some peace and quiet. Crates come in different types and sizes, making it easy to find the ideal kennel for a French Bulldog, Golden retriever, Cockapoo, or any other breed you have.
Obedience Training Improves Confidence
Dogs are naturally pack animals that feel more confident when they have an Alpha figure to guide them. In the world of a domesticated pet dog, their human owner should perform the role of the pack leader. Part of that role involves teaching your dog to obey simple commands, and obedience training can be a great way of making your dog feel more confident.
Always use positive reinforcement training methods when teaching your dog anything new. A shy dog will lose even more confidence if you lose your patience and begin telling him off for getting things wrong. So, be sure to keep all your training sessions fun and reward-based by giving your dog plenty of praise and encouragement and having a supply of his favorite treats on hand.
Start by training your dog at home, using online tutorials to help you. Once your canine chum is more confident, try introducing external distractions, such as loud music or a friend coming in and out of the room. When you know that your dog will keep focused on you, try training him outside in a safe fenced area so he can’t run away.
Socialize Your Dog
Although Cockapoos are usually regarded as outgoing, fun, lively dogs that love to be the center of attention, some of these pups can be surprisingly shy. That’s generally because the dog hasn’t been socialized properly as a puppy.
A shy Cockapoo probably won’t cope terribly well with typical socialization methods, such as taking him to a busy park or walking along a street where there’s lots of traffic and people passing by. In fact, those kinds of situations can make a dog even more nervous and afraid.
Instead, you need to take a different approach. Try asking someone your dog doesn’t know to sit in the same room as your pet. The person is not permitted to talk to the dog or attempt any kind of interaction with him. All your volunteer needs to do is toss a treat onto the floor for the pup to pick up. When the dog is happy and relaxed with that exercise, have the person stand up and repeat the procedure.
If all goes well, you can ask a few friends to come round and carry out the same process until your dog is relaxed and calm in the company of different people.
Eventually, ask your volunteers to take your Cockapoo out for a walk on his leash.
Play With Your Dog More
A shy dog often spends so much time worrying about stuff that he forgets to enjoy himself!
You can help to get your dog out of that mindset by encouraging him to play new games. Try playing frisbee, tug-of-war, and fetch in your backyard, and if you have a friend with a friendly, well-socialized pup, why not invite them round for a play date?
By distracting your nervous dog from things that bother him and giving him something fun to do instead, you can increase your pet’s confidence.
Throughout this procedure, you must be aware of your dog’s “worry radius.” All dogs, including Doodles and Cockapoos, have what’s termed a “worry radius.” When a stranger enters the dog’s worry radius and gets too close, the dog immediately becomes worried. At first, the worry radius will be quite extensive until the dog becomes more relaxed and his confidence increases. Then, you can make the radius narrower.
If you’re playing games in an unfenced area, we recommend that you keep your dog on a leash.
If done correctly, desensitization training can be very effective in boosting a shy dog’s confidence.
For example, many dogs are afraid of cars passing by. So, choose a quiet road in your neighborhood and take your dog there. Hold your dog on his leash, talk to your pet, and reassure him as a car approaches. Feed your dog a treat to distract him as the car passes.
Keep repeating the exercise until your dog learns that cars are not frightening and begins to associate moving vehicles with praise and treats. As your dog becomes more confident, you can begin walking him in busier areas, armed with a good supply of your pet’s favorite treats!
Establish A Routine
All dogs, including Doodles and Cockapoos, thrive when given a regular routine. Shy dogs, in particular, do best when given a structure to their day.
You can remove all uncertainty from your dog’s day by ensuring that he knows when he will be fed, exercised, and when he will be left alone while you go out to work. In general, dogs that suffer from separation anxiety cope more effectively if they know when their owner is going out and when they will return.
Shy dogs that lack confidence often don’t get the most out of life.
You can help your dog to become more confident and able to cope by following the simple tips outlined in this guide. Establish a regular routine for your pet, take time out to play games and train him, and ask a few friends to help you desensitize your canine companion.
Always use positive reinforcement training techniques, be patient and calm, and your dog will gradually come out of his shell.
Mike is the proud owner of a 7-year-old Cockapoo named Luna. He loves to share stories, tips and information about owning a Cockapoo. With over7 years of experience as an owner, Mike is passionate about helping others own and care for their dog.
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