BEHAVIOR & TRAINING

How to Get a Dog to Like You: The Secret to Forging an Everlasting Relationship

dog loving its owner
Wyatt Robinson
Written by Wyatt Robinson

Sometimes we forget that each dog has a unique personality and feelings. As we forget, we start believing that bringing a dog into our house will mean an instant love-bond. Sometimes it does happen. However, sometimes you’ll just find yourself frustrated because nothing you do seems to get through to the dog and you can’t create a bond. You need tips on how to get a dog to like you.

First, don’t get disheartened. This process might take time, but it will be worth the effort, so get encouraged and keep the best disposition at all times. This apparent obstacle could turn into a great challenge with outstanding results. You’ll look back on this moment and laugh with your dog later on!

In this article, we will explain to you the best ways to get a dog like you and we will show you how to approach this relationship. This is a full article that will lead you to achieve your goal: get a dog like you. Plus, remember we mentioned that each dog has a unique personality? Well, a dog’s level of friendliness may also be affected by the breed, hence why we will start this article with a discussion on the friendliest vs least friendly dog breeds.

The Friendliest vs Least Friendly Breeds

You might have a friend who is, usually, the friendly person who gets in touch with everyone. Everybody likes them, everybody remembers them. You like them too—that is why you’re friends.

On the other hand, you might have another type of friend, who’s not so friendly or perhaps just less sociable. You like them too, because you know they have a golden heart.

This situation could be compared to dogs’ personalities. Different types of breeds usually exhibit different personality traits. Why is this so? When dog breeders started appearing, they wanted to breed dogs to emphasize one feature or another. This is why there are dogs that need more training, others that require more exercise, and a long list of other characteristics.

#1: Top Five Least Friendly Dog Breeds

unfriendly husky

Let’s start with the dog breeds that will pose a challenge if you want to get to know them, but it’s all worth it in the end. Don’t get discouraged or scared. Just remember that approaching what is sometimes called “a difficult breed” might require more caution and more effort. It’s never impossible.

  • Rottweiler: At the top of the list, we have Rottweilers. They are known for being loyal. However, they are stubborn, and if they are not properly trained, they won’t think twice about attacking a stranger. But let’s say this dog is a puppy or a trained dog. How do you make them like you? Keep reading because we will tell you how. Now, let’s continue with the list.
  • American Pit Bull Terrier: The thing here is…they are really Hot and cold and hot again. So be careful when you’re approaching them. Why? What happened? The American Pit Bull Terrier was originally bred to be a fighter. That’s why.
  • Siberian Husky: Almost everyone likes a fluffy Husky. But even if they look like teddy bears—wolf version—they might sometimes get a little bored, and that’s when the situation turns tricky. They need a lot of exercises and daily training.
  • Bullmastiff: Beautiful and really stubborn, this is the Bullmastiff, a massive dog breed. They are not especially friendly with other dogs, so if you’re thinking about bringing your Chihuahua to the reunion, you might want to think twice.
  • Chinese Shar-Pei: The Chinese Shar-Pei is a really territorial breed and has a hard time socializing with other dogs or animals in general—perhaps even with you!

#2: Top Five Friendliest Dog Breeds

friendly labrador

Now that you know what the least friendly breeds are, let’s get started with the list of the friendliest ones. Here we have the heart of the party.

  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel: They are not only cute looking, but they are also great companions. They are kind and patient with children, and even though they like playing, they also love to cuddle.
  • Labrador Retriever: You have seen this dog. In fact, it is very likely that they are the ones who just want to approach to you, lick your face, and play around. They are flexible, somehow comical, and very caring.
  • Poodle: Poodles are not only one of the smartest dog breeds, but they are also patient, great with young children, and are always around to engage in family activities.
  • Shih Tzu: They are incredibly smart, but not only smart. This golden-hearted breed is also friendly with dogs, cats, rabbits…you name it. They are friendly with young kids and are active, but at the same time, very patient. And fluffy.
  • Boxer: If you love short-haired friendly dogs, this might be for you. They are not only incredibly social but also really active. So, if you love hiking and meeting new dogs and people, this dog might become your best fellow.

Finally, remember that each dog is an individual. Although dogs that belong to the same breed have inherent similarities because they were bred to be that way, it doesn’t mean that all dogs that belong to the same breed are the same. There will always be personal quirks to each dog.

Tips on How to Get a Dog to Like You

Let’s get down to business. Now you know which are the friendliest breeds, but also which are the most territorial and temperamental. You might wonder: how to get even the least friendly dogs to like you?

We have great tips to make you more skilled in terms of socializing with dogs!

#1: The Most Important Tip

loving a dog

Dogs are living creatures. Respect them, love them, and understand that they might just need a little bit of time to get to know you—and you might also need a bit more time to get to know them.

#2: Be Fun

This one is also important. Have fun with your dog. They are your friends! They want to walk around, have fun, and get challenged. If you usually like sleeping the whole day away, having a dog could be the best excuse to go out and enjoy the sunlight.

If your dog approaches you and they look like they are in the mood to play, go ahead and play. Dogs usually like running, being chased and chasing, and playing fetch. Engaging in a game is by far the easiest way to socialize with a dog and get them to like you.

#3: Feed Them and Groom Them

feeding a dog

A healthy diet is vital, not only for your dog’s general health, but also for their general mood. Grooming is also a great way to create a loving bond and is sometimes a necessity depending on your dog’s breed.

If your dog isn’t eating properly, or if your dog keeps scratching himself like mad due to dirt or even fleas, they need more attention. Give that to them, and they will surely reciprocate.

#4: Positive Reinforcement

Appropriate training is vital. It encourages your dog to learn and stay active. On the other hand, it is important for you too. Basic commands like sit, stay, and heel will improve your communication and therefore your relationship.

Additionally, your dog will be more social and less dangerous for themselves and society in general. Positive reinforcement includes treats, commands, etc.

#5: Give Them Space

petting a dog

If you see a special fluffy cute dog, your first instinct would be to try and touch them. But don’t do it. When you approach, do it slowly. Let the dog lead the way. If they feel nervous or scared—or aggressive—go slower. Stop. Breathe. Give them space until you notice they are receiving your good vibes.

The worst case scenario is when you want to pet a dog, and they just don’t react lovingly. When you want them to love you, but they don’t love you back. If you try everything but the dog doesn’t seem interested or just seem aggressive towards you, respect their decision. Don’t approach—give them space and love them from afar.

#6: Learn the Canine Language

It is true that there is a way in which dogs can communicate with humans. The more exposed you are to this language, the better you’ll become at it. Of course, you’re not going to start sniffing around; rather, you need to observe your dog’s body language.

Understanding the language in which dogs communicate will make you able to communicate better with them and create a meaningful bond.

#7: Three-Second Trick

petting a dog's head

What is the three-second trick? It’s about counting and making sure that the dog is enjoying your snuggles. Start petting them for three seconds (shoulders are always a good start) and stop for another three seconds.

If the dog leans towards you, great job! Keep going with your love.

#8: Know the Right Way to Approach a Dog

If you really want to pick up that tiny dog or a puppy, try first to be on their eye level. Bend your knees. If you seem really tall, it is normal for dogs to get scared.

A good way to create a warm and welcoming atmosphere is to sit down, for example, and let the dog come to you.

#9: Know the Don’ts of Approaching a Dog

dog sniffing

For many furry friends, eye contact might seem rather threatening, even if you do your most “in-love” face or give them your best “puppy dog eyes.”

Plus, avoid speaking in a loud voice. Speak in a calm, deep voice. This will gain their trust.

Third, make sure you don’t do any sudden moves. Unless you know this dog, or they are your dog, this could seem like a threat and the dog might get aggressive towards you, or try to run away for help. Be confident, slow, and tender.

Fourth, save the head pat for last. It can wait. First let them sniff you, go around you, or lick your hand and decide whether they want to have contact with you or not. At the beginning of this meaningful relationship you’re about to create, a head pat is a no-no.

Finally, don’t forget to bring treats. This is an easy one. Treats are for dogs what chocolate is for some humans. So having treats might be, well, an easy step to go faster in the process of bonding.

All the above can help socializing with a dog an easy task. But remember to also trust your guts. If you feel something is off, believe in yourself and stay away. If you feel you can keep going and start playing, for example, go for it! As we said, at the end of the day, just try to have fun!

Wrap Up

dog hugging its owner

How do you bond with others? With some of them, it is just automatic—a click. With many others, if you want to create a bond and a meaningful relationship, you have to put in the effort and work towards building the relationship.

Having contact with any living creature requires sensitivity, skill, and love. The relationship between you and your own dog or your friend’s dog requires respect, compassion, and understanding. With that and the tips above, the dog will surely recognize your efforts and start to reciprocate your love.

In the end, it is all worth it because bonds with dogs are forever. These loyal creatures will stand by you through thick and thin once you’ve earned their trust. You would have gained a friend for life who doesn’t judge or demand—just love you for who you are!

Here we have shared with you the main and most important tips to get a dog to like you. Have you tried them? Don’t forget to share and comment! Also, check out our article on how to cook chicken livers for dogs. Treats are an essential part of approaching a dog to become their friend, and chicken livers make a healthy, delicious treat for dogs.

About the author
Wyatt Robinson
Wyatt Robinson

Wyatt Robinson had a great 25-years career as a veterinarian in United Kingdom. He used to be a member of British Veterinary Association and worked in 3 pet hospitals in London and Manchester. He is shining when he sees his pets healthy and full of energy and it is his duty to help other dog owners to keep their best friends full of life.

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