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There’s a really damaging and common myth that comforting a scared dog will make them feel worse. I’ve heard lots of people repeat this - even very caring and considerate dog lovers - but it just isn’t true.

I think the idea behind this is that showing the dog their fear is justified will reinforce it somehow. Many people suggest that it’s best instead to totally ignore a scared dog - I don’t really understand that logic at all if I’m honest.

Of course, we don’t want to be screaming and rolling around on the ground when something scares or upsets our dogs, but offering calm reassurance and comfort is a very different thing from over-empathising or overreacting.

Fear isn’t a behaviour - it’s a feeling. Dogs, like us, don’t always have control over the way they feel. So, if your scared dog sees you consistently disregarding their emotional cues, they won’t seek comfort from you in future and they won’t see you as a source of safety. This can damage your bond with your dog. Please don’t do it!

This post says it all so well 🐾

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