If your dog has been scared of your boyfriend, this post will show you likely reasons why and what would make them more likely.
So, why is my dog scared of my boyfriend? Likely reasons why your dog is scared of your boyfriend are that your dog thinks he is a threat, your dog had bad past experiences with other men, your dog is unfamiliar with him or that the behavior has been encouraged.
There are actually a number of possible reasons why your dog is scared of your boyfriend and it might be due to a combination of them. However, there are some things you can consider to help figure out the main cause and there are some things you can do about it.
Why is my dog scared of my boyfriend?
Below are likely causes and what would make each of them more likely.
Your dog thinks he is a threat
The cause could be that your dog thinks that he is a threat. This would be more likely if your dog gets scared when anyone new enters your house and not only your boyfriend. In this case, it is likely that your dog will get more comfortable with him over time.
It might also be the case that your dog finds him to be intimidating. This would be more likely if he can be loud around the dog and if your dog also gets scared around other people who act similarly.
Encouraging the behavior
It might also be the case that your dog has learned that the behavior is encouraged. If you tend to give your dog things such as toys, treats or extra attention, when they get scared, they will likely think that the behavior is appropriate and will do it more. Instead, it would help to try to reward your dog when they are not afraid or show signs of not being afraid.
It might also be the case that your dog has had bad experiences with strangers in the past so your dog is now afraid of new people. This would be more likely if you adopted your dog from a shelter.
It could also be the case that your dog is simply unfamiliar with him so is scared. This would be more likely if your boyfriend has not been around your dog many times. In this case, it would be likely that your dog will get more comfortable with him over time.
Below are some things to consider to help figure out the main cause.
If your dog has always been scared of him
If your dog was not always scared of him, it would help to consider what else happened when the behavior first started. If it did start suddenly, it would be more likely to be due to an event that occurred such as if you started arguing with each other or if he was intimidating with the dog in some way.
If your dog is not always scared
If your dog is not always scared of your boyfriend, it would also help to consider what is different when your dog is not scared. For example, if your dog only gets scared when your boyfriend is in your home, it could be the case that your dog is uncomfortable with him being in your dog’s territory.
How to get my dog to be less afraid of my boyfriend?
Below are some options you have when dealing with the behavior.
Avoid encouraging the behavior
As mentioned above, it might be the case that your dog has learned that the behavior is appropriate. It would help to try to avoid rewarding your dog when they are scared and to try to reward them when they are not scared or when they show signs of not being scared.
Give it time
If your boyfriend has not been around your dog much, it would be likely that your dog will become more comfortable around him over time.
Give your dog a safe area to go to
It could also help to give your dog a safe area to go to when your boyfriend is around. Examples could include a crate or a certain room.