I always wondered why Leo was such a nervous mess when people came over. I never gave much thought to it, but he really does get anxiety when people he doesn’t know come over. For my final blog post I am going to talk about why some dogs get nervous in large crowds.
In an article called “Early Life Experiences and Exercise Associate with Canine Anxieties” by Katriina Tiiara, et al. I learned in the article a wide variety of reasons that dogs act a certain way. To start, she mentioned whether it was a “social or unsocial fear”(Tiiea, K et. al, 2015). For Leo I definitely notice the social fear more than the unsocial, so that’s what I hope to dive into the most. It mentions how events early on in life often have the biggest impact on the dogs behaviors later. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with him or him being a shy dog, but, I am just curious to dive into factors that could explain his nature. For Leo I think that is possible due to not walking him as much as I should have. But, I still think him being in a pandemic for a good amount of his younger years would cause him to exhibit such behaviors. Not having socialization with people outside his close family circle probably caused him to be very attached to family and family only. So, when things opened back up and people started coming over again it must’ve been a shock seeing a bunch of people he didn’t know.
In the study they also found that dogs who lived indoors primarily had higher scores for anxiety and social fearfulness. Unfortunately, he does not like going outside and with Texas heat I can’t put a lot of blame on him. Nobody’s fault, but I think that can definitely have an impact on his comfortability with outside people. However, with more age he has gained a bit more confidence around others as long as you’re there with him. Very proud of him and hope that others give their dogs proper socialization, so they can grow comfortable around others. Overall this article was a great help and a good read if you notice your dog has social anxiety, or general anxiety towards sounds and objects.
Tiira, K., & Lohi, H. (2015, November 3). Early life experiences and exercise associate with canine anxieties. PloS one. Retrieved November 10, 2022, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4631323/