If your Golden Retriever puppy has been following you everywhere you might want to know why and what you can do about it. In this post, I will show you common reasons why they do it and what you can do to get it to stop.
So, why does my Golden Retriever puppy follow me everywhere? Possible reasons are that it does it naturally, it wants attention, it has separation anxiety, you have been rewarding it or that it is fearful of something.
There are many different possible causes and it might be due to a combination of them. However, there are some things you can consider when figuring out the most likely cause and there are some things you can do about it.
Why your Golden Retriever puppy follows you everywhere
Below are some common reasons why Golden Retriever puppies follow their owners and what would make them more likely to be the reason why yours has been following you.
The cause could be that it has separation anxiety. This is where it does not like being left alone and it gets anxious when it is left alone. This would be more likely to be the reason if your Golden Retriever puppy becomes anxious when you are leaving home.
It might be worth following the tips given in this book on Amazon about dealing with dog separation anxiety.
It wants attention
It could also be the case that it does it because it wants extra attention from you. This would be more likely if it tends to do it when you have not been giving it much attention and if you normally give it extra attention when it does it.
Instead, if you want it to stop, it would help to give it attention throughout the day in the form of exercise, training and by playing with it. But, it would also help to try to reward it when it is behaving the way you want and to use positive reinforcement training to get it to behave the way that you want.
Golden Retrievers were bred to work alongside their owners for hours on a daily basis. The reason why your Golden Retriever follows you around everywhere could be that it is in its nature to want to be around you.
In this case, it would help to give it lots of training such as to sit or stay so that you can get it to do what you want when it does follow you.
You have been reinforcing the behavior
It might be the case that you have trained it to follow you by giving it things it wants when it does it. If you tend to give it things such as toys, treats or extra attention, when it follows you, it will likely do it more in order to get more rewards.
Instead, it would help to reward it when it is behaving the way you want and to train it to behave the way you want with positive reinforcement training.
As puppies, Golden Retrievers are vulnerable to potential threats. It might be the case that it follows you everywhere because it gets frightened on its own and it feels more secure around you. This would be more likely if it tends to do it more when there are things around that might frighten it like people that it doesn’t know or noises such as sirens or thunder.
Things to consider
Below are some things you can consider when trying to figure out why your Golden Retriever has been doing it.
When it started following you everywhere
It would help to consider what else happened when it first started following you since it could be the case that there was an event that caused it to start.
If it started doing it suddenly, it could be the case that it started doing it because you rewarded the behavior or there was a sudden change in its environment.
What is different when it does not follow you
If it does not always follow you, it would also help to consider what is different when it does not follow you.
For example, if it does not follow you around after it has been fed it might be the case that it tends to follow you around because it wants food.
How to get your Golden Retriever puppy to stop following you everywhere
Below are some things you can do to get your Golden Retriever puppy to stop following you.
The option is to give it lots of positive reinforcement training so that it learns how to behave from an early age. This is where you encourage it to behave the way you want and give it rewards when it shows signs of behaving the way you want it to.
It would also help to train it to be less anxious when you are not around you can do so by following the tips in the video below.
Avoid rewarding it
As mentioned above, it could be the case that it has learned to follow you for rewards. It would help to reward it when it behaves the way you want it to and to avoid rewarding it when it does not.
Give it exercise
It would also help to make sure that it is getting enough exercise for its age.
Generally, it is recommended to exercise a Golden Retriever puppy for up to 5 minutes 2 times per day for every month of age. So, if it is three months old it would be recommended to exercise it for up to 15 minutes two times per day (source). It is also recommended for adult Golden Retriever to get at least an hour of exercise per day when healthy.
Avoid allowing it to be near you at all times
If you allow your Golden Retriever to be around you at all times it might be contributing to its separation anxiety. In order to get your Golden Retriever puppy to be comfortable when it is not around you, it would help to avoid letting it be around you at all times.