There are many reasons a dog will cry out when he sees other dogs. Maybe he’s trying to greet the dog, he’s scared of the dog, or he’s protective and competitive over you. All dogs have distinct personalities and different ways of behaving.
When you’re taking a walk or when a dog walks by your house, your dog may whine or cry. In extreme circumstances, your dog may even pull on the leash, start barking loudly, or growl.
Since no one wants a noisy or bothersome dog, you’re probably wondering why your dog does this and if there’s anything you can do to put an end to it.
Although there are many reasons dogs cry when they see other dogs, it’s simple to fix with proper training.
Should You Be Concerned?
Don’t worry too much about your dog crying when he sees other dogs. This is a very common issue for dog owners, and one animal professionals see over and over again.
That being said, there are some things you can do by yourself to teach your dog to not cry or whine when they see other dogs.
These things include going to a veterinarian or dog behaviorist, using positive encouragement, and ignoring your dog whenever they’re whining at other dogs.
Why Dogs Cry When They See Other Dogs
There are many reasons your dog may cry or whine when they see other dogs. Some of these reasons are more likely than others. Also, these explanations vary in difficulty on how to solve the issue. Let’s look at why your dog cries when they see other dogs.
1. Appeasement Behavior
Appeasement behavior is when a dog uses submissive gestures to let other dogs know they have no intention of fighting with them. In other words, it helps diffuse situations when your dog is feeling threatened or anxious.
Whining is one of these appeasement behaviors. Other common appeasement behaviors are taking on a submissive posture (tail tucked between legs and eyes averted), licking their lips, scratching, exposing their stomach, and yawning.
These behaviors may seem strange for humans, but your dog is using them to avoid conflict.
If your dog cries while hiding behind you or cries and tucks their tail between their legs, there’s a good chance he’s using appeasement behavior to appear less threatening.
2. Excitement & Greeting
The most common reason your dog is crying around other dogs is because they’re trying to say hello. Dogs are very social animals. They love to interact with other dogs as long as they’ve been properly socialized with them.
Whining can be appeasing behavior, as mentioned previously, but a lot of dogs use whining as a way to say hello.
The next time your dog whines, look at their body language. If they’re crying out, wagging their tails, and trying to approach the other dog, then your dog is trying to make a friend.
3. Fear Of Harm
Another reason dogs cry is because they’re afraid of other dogs. If you know your dog has been attacked or abused in the past, this is the most likely reason.
Dogs can have PTSD or be traumatized, just like humans. If your dog is very anxious around other dogs, get your dog treatment and help socialize them with friendly dogs.
Yes, dogs get jealous and competitive. If your dog whines when you encounter another dog, it may be their jealousy that drives them to cry out.
When dogs get jealous, they may also growl, bark, or put themselves between you and the other dog.
When your dog whines around another dog, do you start petting them? If so, then you may be encouraging this behavior. Your pet will associate crying with your attention. As a result, they’ll resume whining or even increase their crying.
How To Stop Your Dog From Crying Around Other Dogs
If you believe your dog may be crying because of one of the reasons above, then you’re probably wondering how to stop it. After all, no one wants a dog that’s always crying and lunging towards other dogs.
Here are some ways to stop your dog from crying around other dogs.
1. Stop Allowing The Behavior
This sounds like an obvious piece of advice, but a lot of dog owners miss this step. When your dog starts whining or crying, ignore it. Don’t look at them. Pay absolutely no attention to your dog.
This may sound a bit harsh, but it works. Eventually, your dog will learn that crying won’t get them attention, so they’ll stop doing it.
Of course, this depends on your dog’s personality. If your dog is young, they may not realize that you don’t want them crying at dogs. All they can think about is the fact that they see another dog.
If ignoring your dog doesn’t seem to work, try one of the other solutions below.
2. Start Using Positive Reinforcement
Some pet owners punish their dog when they don’t do something right. This is negative reinforcement, and it’s not the best way to teach your dog not to cry when they see other dogs.
This can actually make your dog aggressive since they may associate seeing other dogs with being punished.
Instead, try positive reinforcement. Every time your dog doesn’t whine around a dog, give them a treat. Your dog will soon associate not crying with a treat. Eventually, with enough practice, your dog will stop crying when they see a dog.
3. Meet Calm Dogs
Sometimes dogs who seem excited cry out at other dogs because they are anxious. This could be especially true if your dog hasn’t been frequently exposed to other dogs.
The next time you go to a dog park, find calm dogs your dog can play with. Once they realize other dogs are no big deal, they’ll stop overreacting every time they see another dog. Once your dog becomes used to calm dogs, then your dog could try playing with more energetic dogs.
4. Go To A Dog Behaviorist & Veterinarian
If the above tips aren’t working, then it’s time to go to a veterinarian or a dog behaviorist. A dog behaviorist is not the same thing as a dog trainer. A dog trainer teaches the dogs to respond to commands while a dog behaviorist tries to understand why a dog behaves the way it does.
For example, if your dog always whines or cries out when they see other dogs, then an animal behaviorist will try to understand why from a psychological point of view.
A dog behaviorist will discover why your dog cries when they see other dogs and what the best method is to teach them to stop.
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