More Than Love
Building a Strong Bond with Your Dog
It’s easy to fall in love with your dog the first time you meet them. But a bond is something that grows and deepens over time. Unlike love alone, having a bond with your dog is all about a strong connection. It’s far more than loyalty or obedience; it’s about trust, understanding, and support.
So how do you know if you have a strong bond with your dog? They often provide clues, such as:
- Making eye contact
- Checking in with you, even in new and off-leash environments
- Being happy to see you
- Seeming calm and relaxed when you’re around
- Wanting to be near you
- Snuggling with things that smell like you, like your shoes or socks
- Listening and responding when you speak
- Seeking your physical affection
As you can imagine, it can take time for a deep relationship like this to develop. And, even if you have a bond, there are still things you can do to make it even stronger. The best part? All of these strategies are fun, simple, and let you spend more time with your dog – a surefire way to build trust, love, and confidence.
Training sessions are a great way to connect with your dog. They encourage you to focus on each other and help improve dog-human communication, which fosters teamwork. Whether you work on old skills, try to teach new ones, or focus on tricks, training is a great way to provide your dog with mental stimulation.
What’s better than a little playtime with your dog? Mix it up by trying some tug, fetch, or little hide-and-seek. An added bonus? Asking your dog to sit and wait while you hide is a fun way to add a little training to the fun, too!
Remember, many dogs don’t enjoy hugs, but there are other ways to provide physical affection. A dog who seeks out snuggles, pets, or leans on you is definitely feeling a strong connection. You can build on this even further by having regular grooming sessions or gentle massage.
But the best part of honoring, reinforcing, and strengthening your bond with your dog? It’s good for both of you and can deepen even the most loving of relationships.