If you are a dog lover, this might come as a shock, but not everyone loves dogs. In fact, some people downright despise dogs.
Dog lovers are never going to change the minds of everyone. Certain people are going to keep hating dogs no matter what. However, some non-dog-lovers might be swayed if they see that dogs can actually be wonderful animals.
How can dog lovers change opinions? Start by being responsible dog owners and respecting others. Have good manners and teach good manners to your dogs. If dog owners choose not to be responsible and respectful, then it only gives dogs and their owners a bad name.
Most dog lovers can admit that certain dogs and their owners are infuriating. There are some good reasons why some people really don’t like dogs, and it usually comes down to things the owner does (or doesn't do). Are you guilty of any of these offenses?
01 of 10
You Don't Pick Up After Your Dog
It sounds simple, but some people still don’t do it. Please, just pick up your dog’s poop! Stepping in dog poop is disgusting and annoying. Respect your neighbors and help keep your community clean. Pick up your dog’s poop every single time.
Bring poop bags wherever you go with your dog. Consider a convenient little poop bag holder that attaches to your dog's leash. This way you’ll always have bags handy. If you forget or run out of bags, try asking another dog owner for a bag. Worst case scenario, come back with a bag as soon as possible to pick up your dog’s mess.
02 of 10
Yes, dogs will bark. Sometimes the barking is helpful to alert us to danger or to scare off a threat. However, excessive barking is a real problem. Your neighbors do not need to hear your dog barking on and on; this really should be common sense. Your barking dog is noise pollution!
Please don't leave a dog outside to bark at the whole neighborhood. It's not fair to the dog and it disrupts the community. Plus, your neighbors might call the police and you may get in trouble. Bring your dog inside. Work on training to teach your dog when barking is appropriate.
03 of 10
It can be frustrating to watch someone struggle with an unruly dog. It's even worse to be the person who has to deal with someone else's out-of-control dog. When dogs lunge and yank the leash on walks, it can upset other dogs and people (especially those who are afraid of dogs). When dogs bounce around and act hyperactive, it affects everyone around them. When dogs jump on people, it's annoying, uncomfortable, and someone could get hurt.
Is your dog properly trained? Make sure your dog knows how to behave well on walks and around all kinds of people (including kids). While your dog is still learning, take him on walks during quieter times when he is less likely to affect other dogs and people. Cross the street when you see a dog or person coming to avoid an interaction your dog is not ready for.
You should also be certain you have verbal control of your dog before letting him off the leash. This includes fenced-in public areas like dog parks.
04 of 10
Dogs don't belong off-leash in public unless it is permitted by law and it is an enclosed area.
First of all, it's simply not safe to let your dog roam free. Secondly, it's invasive to other people. Your neighbors should not have to worry about your dog trampling their plants, chasing their cats, pooping in their yards, and generally terrorizing them. Sure, your dog may be friendly, but how can other people know that for sure?
If your dog is loose and running through the neighborhood, some people are going to get scared. Even if you are right there with your obedient off-leash dog, it's still a bad idea. You can never be sure of how other animals or people will react to your off-leash dog.
Please keep your dog on a leash in public. If you are in a safe and legal off-leash area, make sure you have excellent verbal control (especially a good recall).Continue to 5 of 10 below.
05 of 10
Your Dog Invades the Personal Space of Others
Not everyone wants to pet your dog (We know–we can't believe it either!). Many people are annoyed by a dog that is jumping up, licking, pawing, sniffing, begging, or otherwise invading their personal space. People will not want to enter your home if your dog accosts them every time they come over. And they certainly won't be inviting you to bring your dog to their own homes.
Teach your dog how to behave around other people, whether at your home or away. Your dog will be welcome in many more places if he is calm, gentle, and well-socialized. Until he has some self-control through training, you would be better off keeping him in the crate or confined to another room when company comes over. Let him stay at home when you visit friends or family until he has mastered training.
06 of 10
Some dogs exhibit destructive behavior. They might chew furniture, shoes, or other items. Some will dig up gardens and flower beds. Destructive behavior may be caused by fear, anxiety (such as separation anxiety), or simply restless energy. However, when your dog destroys property belonging to other people, you have a real problem on your hands.
Have respect for the property of others. If you have a destructive dog, it's best to keep your dog confined when you're not home, especially if you live with other people. A destructive dog should not be brought to other people's homes or yards.
Seek the help of a veterinarian, behaviorist, or trainer who can get to the root of your dog's destructive behavior and offer possible solutions.
07 of 10
You Bring Your Dog to Inappropriate Places
Sorry, but dogs are not welcome everywhere. Unless you have a true service dog, your dog will not be allowed in many places, such as restaurants and stores.
Please don't try to sneak your dog in or pretend your pet dog is a service animal. This only hurts those people who really need their service animals present. Instead, seek out dog-friendly businesses where your dog will be welcomed and allowed to act like a dog.
If your dog is an emotional support animal, there may be more places where he is allowed (like some airlines). Make sure your dog is extremely well-trained before taking him places that allow ESAs. If your dog misbehaves, it may lead businesses to change their policies on ESAs.
08 of 10
Your Dog Is a Brat at the Dog Park
The dog park is not the right place for every dog. Before bringing your dog to an off-leash dog park, familiarize yourself with some basic dog park etiquette. First, make sure your dog gets along well with other dogs. Then, be certain you have good verbal control of your dog.
Please watch your dog at all times while at the dog park. Don't be that person who is on their cell phone at the other end of the dog park while your dog is misbehaving. You must be able to control your dog. Even dogs that normally get along well can get into a fight in the right (or wrong) conditions. Remove your dog immediately if he exhibits bullying behavior or is otherwise not playing nice.Continue to 9 of 10 below.
09 of 10
You Don't Take Responsibility for Your Dog's Mistakes
Accidents happen. Dogs destroy property. They get into fights. Some even bite people. If your dog is involved in an unfortunate incident, it's not the time to lay blame on others. Be honest and accept the fair share of responsibility. You might need to fork over the cash to replace someone's expensive rug or cover another dog's vet bills.
Do your best to prevent incidents, but be prepared to step up if something does happen. The worst thing you can do it to act like your dog is a perfect angel when everyone else knows that the incident was your dog's fault. Plus, if you make someone angry by refusing to accept responsibility for your dog's actions, they might end up taking legal action. Worst case scenario, you could lose your dog!
10 of 10
You Won't Stop Talking About Your Dog
Yes, you adore your dog. Just about every dog owner does. But remember that not everyone wants to hear you go on and on about how your dog "did the cutest thing" or how smart/sweet/silly/amazing your dog is. They might not want to see 57 photos of your adorable pooch. This especially applies to non-dog lovers. Non-parents often feel the same way about people who won't stop talking about their kids. Take a moment to think about the people you're talking to before you tell endless doggie tales.
Or, you might just decide to find a new group of friends who are more dog-centric and who definitely want to check out your dog's photos!
Sargisson, R., Canine Separation Anxiety: Strategies for Treatment and Management. Veterinary Medicine: Research and Reports, 5, 143-151, 2014, doi:10.2147/VMRR.S60424