Updated at: 08-01-2022 - By: petstutorial

If your schedule has changed and your pup is now at home all day without his best friend to play with, snuggle next to and bark at, he’s probably been sleeping all day. The moment you walk in the door, he goes from super bored to super excited. He hasn’t seen you for what seems like forever to him, and he wants to play fetch, receive ear rubs, belly rubs and head pats. And he’s going to make sure he gets everything he wants, so he’ll follow you around, especially if you don’t have the time to give him lots of attention when you walk through the door. Sit at your computer and he’ll lay by your feet. Prepare dinner and he’ll act as the chef’s helper. He may also whine and bark to make you notice him.


Fear and Discomfort

Dogs seek out what comforts them when they’re scared or uncomfortable. In many cases, that’s a spot under your bed, behind the couch or something similar. But your pup might see you as his ultimate security blanket and flee to your side when he hears or sees anything that frightens him, such as a loud noise on the TV or a thunderstorm rolling through. Anything that causes discomfort, but not necessarily fear, can also result in the same sort of clinginess. Examples include an ultrasonic bark deterrent that’s malfunctioning and picking up non-barking sounds such as a deep voice, malfunctioning anti-bark collars and illnesses.

Separation Anxiety

If you come home to a furry troublemaker who ransacked your house by getting in your trash, peeing on your floor, ripping up the carpet, tearing into the couch or acting generally destructive, separation anxiety may be playing a role. The second you come home, your little guy won’t leave your side. This differs from just wanting attention because you’ll also be cleaning up the mess he made while you were gone. He gets extremely anxious when you leave. He remains very worried until you come home, and then he basically attaches himself to you. He might even seem clingy if you leave to get the mail or pick up the newspaper from your porch.


If your pup sticks to your side because he’s bored, the obvious fix is more exercise, such as daily walks, fetch and running free in an enclosed area at least a few times a week. In the case of fear and separation anxiety, counterconditioning him to associate something positive — such as treats — with what he fears will tone down his, “I have to run to mom or dad” response. Severe fears and separation anxiety may need the help of a qualified dog trainer or medication from your vet. As for discomfort, avoid leaving ultrasonic bark machines on while you’re home and remove all electric collars. All too often these devices pick up outside noise as barks and cause discomfort when your pooch is quiet. If he seems in pain, sick or has symptoms associated with cognitive dysfunction syndrome, take his furry rump to your vet for a checkup.


Why Is My Dog Displaying Needy Behavior?

Some breeds are naturally more inclined to be needy dogs.

This is due to traits that were bred into them, yes some dogs were intentionally bred to be needier than some of their counterparts.

So chances are, you may just have a needy dog breed.

Many working-class, hunting and herding dog breeds were bred to pay close attention to their masters, needing to always be on alert for verbal cues, and on the watch for body language in order to effectively serve their purpose.

To the same tune, most toy breeds were bred to be lap dogs.

Despite being bred for different purposes, the end result is the same, a dog breed that is more inclined than others to be where its master is at all times.

If your dog has never been needy but has suddenly become needy environmental changes are usually to blame.

A big change in day to day life or even a subtle one can leave a once independent pooch feeling clingy and anxious.

These changes can be things you may not have even noticed or don’t really considered a change.

Dogs are naturally creatures of habit and some are sensitive enough to be uprooted by the smallest of interruptions in their routine.

The Best Methods To Eliminate Needy Dog Behavior

There are many ways to handle needy dog behavior, but not all of them are effective, or safe.

When dealing with a needy dog the most important factors are always going to be consistency and rewarding only the behaviors you want your dog to exhibit.

A reward doesn’t always have to be a treat, even a pat on the head, or words said in a certain way can assert to your dog that you’re pleased by his behavior.

By not rewarding negative behaviors your dog will begin to associate good behaviors with good things and be more likely to leave the bad ones behind.

Never, ever yell at, or hit your dog for his behavior.

It is likely that your dog won’t even comprehend why you’re yelling, or hitting him and it will only increase his stress and add to the behavioral problems, creating new ones.


The Reality Of Needy Dog Behavior

There is no immediate fix for a needy dog, it takes a lot of work and a lot of patience. In the end, the hard work will pay off. You will have a happier dog and a happier life with your dog.

If you do choose to go this route, be sure to do your homework and get one that is experienced with needy dogs. This ensures the behaviorist will be experienced enough to have the skills to effectively help you and your dog.

Don’t just go with the cheapest one, or the one that claims to have the most experience. Ask questions, look up reviews, introduce them to your dog and see how your dog responds to them.

If you have to hire a dog behaviorist, you want to be sure you’re getting your money’s worth and your beloved pet is getting the best help he can get.

Do you have any awesome tips, tricks, or methods of dealing with needy dog behavior that we haven’t covered? If so, let me know in the comments below…

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