Dogs make great companions and protectors. Just because they protect us does not mean they are not capable of being scared of things.
Some dogs can be scared of a range of weird things like dishwashers, vacuum cleaners, and even ceiling fans. In this article, we will explore the reasons why dogs might be scared of dishwashers.
So, why is my dog afraid of my dishwasher? Let’s look further into some reasons why your dishwasher makes your pup run for the hills.
Why is my dog scared of my dishwasher?
Below are likely reasons why your dog gets scared of the dishwasher.
The first reason is that the noise the dishwasher makes is scary to your pet. Dogs have very sensitive hearing and can be frightened by loud noises. The dishwasher’s noise may startle them or even scare them. This would be more likely to be the reason if your dog tends to get scared of other loud appliances as well.
Another reason is that the dishwasher’s movement may scare them. Dogs are naturally skittish and may not like the way the dishwasher moves across the floor. This movement could make them feel uneasy or scared. This would be more likely to be the reason if your dishwasher tends to vibrate a lot when it is turned on.
Finally, some dogs may be scared of the chemicals that are released from the dishwasher. Dishwashers are known to produce carbon dioxide, which can potentially scare your pup. The chemicals that are released may cause pain in your dog’s nasal passages and respiratory tract, leading them to feel nervous.
Encouraging the behavior
A part of the cause could be that your dog has learned that the behavior is warranted. If you tend to give your dog things such as toys, treats or extra attention, when it is afraid of the dishwasher, it will likely have learned that the behavior is warranted so will do it more.
Remember that some dogs may be scared by a combination of these factors. No one knows your dog better than you do, so try to understand why they might be afraid of the dishwasher.
How to get my dog to be less afraid of the dishwasher?
Below are options you have when getting your dog to be less afraid of the dishwasher.
Positive reinforcement training
One option would be to give your dog positive reinforcement training. This is where you reward your dog for behaving the way you want it to. To use positive reinforcement training to get your dog to stop being afraid of the dishwasher, you could:
- Open the door of the dishwasher and give your dog a treat for not being afraid
- Close the door of the dishwasher and give your dog a treat again for not being afraid
- Turn on the dishwasher and give your dog a treat if it is not afraid
- Continue giving your dog a treat every few minutes unless your dog starts being afraid
Over time, your dog should learn that it gets rewards if it is not afraid when the dishwasher is turned on. Of course, you would also give your dog less and less treats each time, until you can just give your dog a treat when after the dishwasher has finished and your dog has not been afraid at all.
The next time you turn on the dishwasher, ignore your dog and leave them alone in another room or in their crate. This should help them become less anxious when they know that there is no cause for alarm.
Put your dog in a room where it cannot see or hear the dishwasher. This can help them become less afraid of it over time. You could try taking the dog out for a walk immediately after turning the dishwasher on as well.
Some dogs may actually enjoy playing with the bubbles generated by the machine. Keep an eye out for any quirks your pet may have towards dishes but always keep them under supervision.
Avoid encouraging the behavior
As mentioned above, it might be the case that your dog has learned that the behavior is rewarded. It is important to try to avoid giving your dog rewards after it has started being afraid. Instead, it would help to try positive reinforcement training as mentioned above, and to get your dog to stay in a different part of the house so that it does not hear or see the dishwasher when it is turned on.
Remember that these tips may not work for all dogs, so be patient and understanding with your furry friend. If the problem persists, you should consult a veterinarian to rule out any underlying health concerns.
Why is my dog suddenly scared of the dishwasher?
If your pup is suddenly frightened by the dishwasher, there may be an underlying health problem. It’s always a good idea to consult with a professional to make sure that they are not in pain or suffering from some other issue.
A vet can rule out any heart disease or respiratory problems, which could cause distress when exposed to dust and chemical substances. If all is well with their health and it is just a case of extreme anxiety, then you should continue practicing positive reinforcement and desensitization until the dog gets over its fear.
However, it would help to consider what else happened when your dog first started being afraid of the dishwasher, if your dog started doing it suddenly, it could be due to things such as if you got a new dishwasher, your dog hurt itself when the dishwasher was turned on causing a negative association, you started using the dishwasher at a different time or your dog learned that the behavior is rewarded.
Is my dog scared of the dishwasher?
Maybe your pup isn’t actually afraid of the dishwasher but rather fears what the noise represents: cleaning time.
Try leaving your pup with a squeeky toy or other treat to keep them occupied while you do the dishes. By giving your dog a positive association with dishwashing time, you can help ease their anxiety.
How loud is a dishwasher to a dog?
The sound of the dishwasher may actually seem quite loud to your pup. To them, it may be similar in volume to you shouting very close to their ear.
This is why they may become startled by the sudden noise. Try setting up some speakers near your dog with white noise or another sound that they are not afraid of to help get them used to loud sounds. Many breeds are naturally over-excitable and nervous, so even the slightest change in routine can make them uneasy.
Do dogs have an emotional response to dishwashers?
Some breeds are more prone to anxiety than others, but research has suggested that our canine friends do have an emotional response when exposed to new experiences. Dogs are known for being loyal companions who often mirror our emotions, so it’s not surprising that they may become scared when we are too.
It is important to remember that each dog is different and may take a different approach to overcome their fear of the dishwasher. With patience and some effort, you can help your pup feel more comfortable around this everyday appliance.
Can a trainer ease a dog’s fears of the dishwasher?
A professional dog trainer can help with many issues, including fear of the dishwasher. They may use desensitization techniques like exposing your pup to white noise, music, or another sound that they are not afraid of at close range to help them overcome their anxiety.
Using positive reinforcement, like giving treats or pats when your dog is calm around the dishwasher, can also help them grow accustomed to this everyday appliance.
Many dogs become frightened by household appliances because they don’t understand them. A strange object with loud noises may frighten your pup even if it seems like it is quite familiar. It can take patience and time for any pet to adjust to new surroundings.
If you have another pet in your home such as a cat, it’s important to be extra patient when introducing any new appliances. A dishwasher can seem like an unknown threat because of the loud sounds and vibrations it makes.
What other appliances scare dogs?
Other appliances that can scare dogs include vacuum cleaners, blenders, and even the washing machine.
Each dog will have their own unique set of fears, so it’s important to be patient and understand your pet’s personality when working to ease their anxiety. With some time and effort, you can help your pup feel more comfortable in their home environment.