The Ultimate Guide to Pet Your Dog: Tips and Techniques for a Bonding Experience
Learn how to pet your dog, Most dogs want to spend time with their favorite person, but you can do a few things to make your next pampering session a little more special.
There is a right way to pet a dog; if you know when and where to do it, everyone will be safer and have a better time. Find out step-by-step how to pet a dog the right way.
It would help if you never were rough with a dog, but being extra gentle can make your pup feel at ease. It can also make petting your pet less distracting, which is nice if your pet is trying to fall asleep or relax. Use this method to calm your dog down when upset or anxious. It may be more of a background tool than your primary way to get their attention. Long, gentle strokes are comforting and steady and don’t overstimulate your furry friend.
Be Careful as You Approach
Before petting a dog you don’t know, you should ask the owner first. The dog might be aggressive or not like being touched by strangers. If the dog has no owner, don’t go near it. Look for aggression, anxiety, or fear in the dog’s body language. Let the dog come to you and start the conversation. Wait to go to the dog. This rule also applies to your dog since startling them while sleeping or doing something else may scare them and make them bite.
When you give your dog a good ear massage, and they look like they’re in heaven, you know you’re doing something right. Merrick Pet Care says that the spot behind a dog’s ears can be a compassionate and happy place to rub because it has a lot of nerve centers.
Get Down Where They Are
If you squat down to meet the dog at eye level, it will feel more at ease (but avoid making prolonged eye contact, which they can view as a threat). Start the conversation by getting down low and putting out your fist. This will let the dog sniff you. Use a closed hand instead of an open one because the dog might think your fingers are treats if you use an open hand.
Let Your Dog Initiates
You can ask if you need clarification on how your dog feels (for example, if you’re unsure if they want more scratches or more space). Why not let them start the hugging? You can wait for a nudge or another sign that says, “Hey, human, I’m ready,” or you can pet them for a few seconds to see how they react.
Petting With The Grain
Pet a dog’s fur in the direction it grows. Some dogs with longer hair might like ruffled fur, but short-haired dogs might find it uncomfortable. Gently run your fingers through your dog’s skin in the right direction. You could also give your dog a light massage on the face and back.
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Pick a Neutral Area
Petting a dog for the first time should start on a neutral part of its body, like the chest or shoulders. Do not pet a dog on the top of its head right away. Some dogs might cower or get scared if you reach out or bend over them, so it’s always best to pet a dog on the chest or shoulders from the side first.
Pet Your Dog to The Other Places
If the dog likes being petted in the neutral areas (as shown by a wagging tail or nuzzling), move your hands to the more sensitive areas. Try petting the dog at the back of the neck, the base of the bottom, or where the ears meet the head. When a dog is relaxed, it may fall on its back. But another reason a dog might show its belly is to show submission because it is afraid. Be careful when you pet a dog’s belly. Keep an eye on the dog’s actions and body language to see if they seem uncomfortable. Be careful when massaging sensitive parts of a dog, like its paws, legs, or footpads.
You and the dog shouldn’t feel stressed out when you pet it. Studies have shown that talking to and petting a dog can lower blood pressure. So give them lots of petting. Pay attention to the dog’s body language, and be extra careful if you don’t know the dog.