Proper Etiquette For Greeting Someone Else’s Dog

Q: What’s your first instinct when you see a dog?

  • Walk away
  • Stand still and patiently wait for the dog to approach you
  • Stay calm and ignore.
  • Jump in straight away screaming “aren’t you the cutest puppy ever”.

Well I think like me, most of you all are guilty of the 4th scenario. We all go a bit cray for furry little dogs. However, for your own protection and for the wellbeing of the dog, please take a moment to learn how to properly greet someone else’s dog.

Ask for permission– Always ask for the owner’s permission before reaching to pet the dog. This is important because the owner can warn you if the dog is aggressive, in training, too shy or not comfortable with random people.

Avoid eye contact– Humans and dogs communicate differently. While humans view eye contact as a sign of trust and focus; from a dog’s point of view it is either domineering or threatening. So the best way to approach is to keep your side towards the dog, which is more friendly and comfortable in the dog’s eye.

Let the dog approach you first– Although it’s tempting to hug them right away, always let the dog approach you in his/her terms. Once the dog sniffs and appears to be okay with you, go ahead and calmly pet them.

Proper Etiquette For Petting– Don’t pet the dog on the top of their head, no one likes that not even us humans. Pet them under the chin (they love it) chest area and on the sides. If the dog starts to get uncomfortable/nervous, then calmly back away and move along.

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