If your dog won’t leave you alone, you might be wondering why and what you can do about it. This post will show you a number of possible causes and what you can do to get it to stop. 

So, why won’t my dog leave me alone? Possible reasons why your dog won’t leave you alone are that it wants something from you, it has some separation anxiety, it is fearful of something or that it has learned that the behavior gets rewarded. 

Since there are a number of possible causes, it would help to consider what would make each of them more likely. Once you have a good idea of the main cause, it should become a lot easier to get your dog to stop doing it.

Why your dog won’t leave you alone

Below are a number of common causes and what would make each of them more likely to be the main reason.

It wants something from you

The cause could be that it is waiting to get something from you. This would be more likely if it only bothers you when it has not already gotten things such as food or exercise. In this case, it could help to start feeding it and giving it exercise at the same time daily so that it learns when it can expect to get fed and exercised. 

It wants attention

The cause could be that it is trying to get extra attention from you. This would be more likely if it does it more when you have not been giving it much attention for a while and if you tend to give it extra attention when it does it.

Instead, it would help to give it attention throughout the day by training it, exercising it and playing with it. However, it would help to avoid rewarding it with extra attention when it behaves in an undesirable manner.  

Encouraging the behavior

It could also be the case that it has learned that it gets other rewards when it won’t leave you alone. If you tend to give it things such as toys or treats, when it won’t leave you alone, it will likely do it more in order to get more rewards. 

Separation anxiety

The cause could be that it has some separation anxiety. This would be more likely if it tends to become anxious when you are leaving home or going to bed at night. 

Fearfulness

The cause could also be that something has been causing it to be fearful. This would be more likely if it has started following you around suddenly and if it does it more at a time when it might be fearful. Things that could be causing it to be fearful might include fireworks or another pet.

Boredom

The cause could be that it is bored and looking for ways to stimulate itself. This would be more likely if it tends to bother you when it has not been able to get exercise and if stops doing it after getting exercise. It would help to ensure that your dog is able to get the daily amount of recommended exercise for its age and breed.

Nature

Dogs were bred to work alongside humans. Due to this, it is to be expected that your dog will look to you for direction and that it will cause it to follow you around at times. This is why it would help to give it lots of positive reinforcement training so that it learns what you expect from it.

Things to consider

Below are some things to consider when figuring out the main reason why your dog has been doing it.

What else happened when it first started doing it

If your dog has started doing it suddenly, it would help to consider what else happened when it first started doing if. If it did start doing it suddenly, it could be due to things such as learning that the behavior gets rewarded, a change in its daily routine such as not being fed at the same time or something causing it to be fearful. 

What is different when your dog won’t leave you alone

If there is a certain time that your dog tends to bother you, it would also help to consider what is different about the timing. For example, if it does it more before it has been fed, it would be more likely that it is doing it because it is waiting for food.

What body language it shows

It would also help to consider the body language it shows when it does it. If it shows signs of being anxious such as pacing, crying and making itself appear smaller, it would be more likely to be due to something causing it to be anxious or fearful. Whereas, if it shows signs of excitement, it would be more likely to be due to things such as wanting exercise or food.

What to do about your dog not leaving you alone

Below are some things you can do in order to get your dog to stop bothering you.

Avoid encouraging the behavior

As mentioned above, it might be the case that it has learned that the behavior gets rewarded. Instead, it would help to reward your dog when it behaves the way you want it to but to avoid rewarding it when it does not. 

Redirect its focus

Another option would be to try to get it to focus on something else when it starts bothering you. Things that you could get it to focus on would be laying down in a certain spot or you could give it a toy it likes.

Positive reinforcement training

Positive reinforcement training involves rewarding your dog for showing signs of behaving in a way that you want it to.

To use positive reinforcement training to get it to leave you alone, you would reward it when it does not bother you but it normally would and stop rewarding it when it starts bothering you.

Ensure that it is getting the right diet

It could be the case that your dog has been doing it due to being hungry. It would also help to ensure that it has been eating the correct foods and that it has been eating the correct number of calories since.

Feed it and exercise it at the same time daily

It could also help to feed it and give exercise at around the same time daily. The reason for this is that it might not be leaving you alone because it does not know when it will get fed or exercised so it’s following you to make sure that it gets it.

Give it attention throughout the day

It would also help to give it attention throughout the day so that it is less likely to seek attention from you. Ways to give it attention would be to play with it, exercise it and train it. 

Try ignoring it

As mentioned above, it could be the case that it has been doing it because it is looking for extra attention. It would help to give it attention when it is behaving the way you want it to but to avoid rewarding it when it does not unless necessary.

Limit reasons why it might be anxious or fearful

It would also help to limit reasons why it might be anxious or fearful. Some things to do could include giving it access to a quiet room and feeding it, exercising it and letting it pee before leaving it for a long time.

Get help

If you can’t figure out why your dog has been doing it or you can’t get it to stop then you could try getting the help of a dog behaviorist in your area. By doing so you will be able to see how to get it to stop and why it is doing it.

Why won’t my dog leave me alone all of a sudden?

If your dog has started doing it suddenly, it would be more likely that something happened to cause it to become fearful when you are not around such as someone mistreating it or getting another pet. It could also be due to things such as getting injured or a change in its diet.

This post may contain affiliate links. Petdogowner may be paid a commission from the companies mentioned in this post. This has no effect on the price that you pay and we are very grateful for any support.

Most Recommended For Dogs

Best Fresh Dog Food

Our favorite: Ollie Dog Food - it's good because it tailors the food to your dog's specific needs Get 50% off your first order with this link.

Best Dog Treats

Our favorites: N-Bone Puppy Teething Ring (on Amazon) - Great for puppies. American Journey Dog Treats (on Amazon) - Great for adult dogs.

Best Dog Training Program

Our favorite: The Dunbar Academy Training Program - If you want a happy and obedient dog, this is one of the best online dog training programs available right now. You can get the first month free using This link.

Author

I created and currently manage Pet Dog Owner, the website you can go to when you have questions about your dog's behavior. It is my hope that you find Pet Dog Owner to be a helpful resource. It is also my hope that it will help you to improve your relationship with your dog. You can read more about me and my website here.