Declaring July 5th as the Dogs Independence Day.
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My name is Petros Dertsakyan. I am an experienced pet parent and a huge dog lover.
Dogs are the most popular pets worldwide, and one of the most beloved household pets. According to a GfK survey done in 22 countries, 33% of the respondents had dogs as part of their families. On a global scale, that’s a huge number!
Throughout the past few decades, our attitude towards dogs has been changing. There is a strong movement towards humanizing our pets. We are increasingly treating dogs with the love and respect we give to other family members. They are pretty much like our kids!
This kind of interaction has led to an unhealthy dependence of dogs on their pet parents. Naturally, they depend on us for food, water, shelter, health, exercise, protection, love, etc. Of course it’s a great feeling, but if not properly balanced, this easily leads to an over dependence with significant downsides. Dogs instinctively crave a certain degree of independence; a need to satisfy some of their ancestral instincts from their wolf cousins, which we humans hinder. Sadly, this creates a situation that can have a negative impact on their physical and mental well-being.
Over time dogs develop strong bonds with their pet parents, which in most cases will result in separation anxiety, that can really affect dogs’ psychology. They can become clingy, and as cute as it might seem to have your fur baby wanting to be attached to you 24/7, this could have bad consequences for your dogs’ well-being if not handled correctly.
Having contemplated this deeply, I came to the realization that dogs need a certain degree of independence that we deprive them of. For a dog to be happy and healthy they need to feel confident and independent.
We can reinforce independence in our dogs through training, socialization, exercise, positive daily routines, as well as make them feel safe. Giving your dog these things will allow them to be more relaxed and confident, which in turn will result in them being more open and curious. It will promote an environment where they will take more risks with things they might otherwise be afraid of and will make their brains and souls to be more relaxed.
There are little things you can do every day to empower them to be independent: leave the door to their crate open and create comfortable atmosphere to give them the sense that they are making their own decision go in there, use treats and toys to entice them to go in; let them brush their own teeth; get them puzzle feeders, introduce a stuffed animal as a comforting toy, or a toy that can act as a distraction when you aren’t there, helping reduce anxiety. And the list goes on…
Join me in initiating and celebrating Dogs Independence Day on July 5th by finding out all that you can do to enable your dog to be the most independent dog on the block!
Our mission is to collect 100,000 signatures to be able to submit this petition to WH/Congress, so July 5th to be declared Dogs Independence Day.
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