Improve Your Dog’s Self-Confidence

March 2, 2019
Dogs have different personalities and needs, and some of them may even be insecure. Today, we'll show you how to improve your dog's self-confidence.

An insecure dog may be unkind towards other people and he may act aggressively. He might also be shy and become depressed. Because of this, it’s important to improve your dog’s self-confidence so that he can be a sociable and happy dog. 

There’s no question that the best way to improve your dog’s self-confidence is through games and exercise. When the dog is learning things through these activities, his confidence improves. 

So, here are some games that you can play with your dog that will boost his self-confidence.

Games to boost your dog’s self-confidence

Playing games will boost your dog's self-confidence.

First, your dog should learn how to relate well to others. That’s the lesson behind this first game.

The friend game

For this game, you’ll need a friend or companion who already knows the animal, and who the animal feels comfortable with. In this activity, we’ll use positive reinforcement and silence. You should also have your dog’s favorite treats with you.

Your companion should stand about 20 feet away from you while you’re holding your pet on his leash. When you shout ‘greet,’ your pet should go to your friend. Then, without touching your pet or saying anything, your friend will give him a treat.

Call your dog back to you, and repeat this game several times. After you think he’s got the hang of it, let your pet go free. When you shout ‘greet,’ see if your dog will go to your friend just like you taught him to do.

At first, if he does, your friend should give him a treat. Then, he can start to talk to the animal affectionately and, if the dog reacts positively, he can play with him. Once you do this with one companion, you can try it with other friends and family.

When an animal feels rewarded and loved by others, his confidence and self-esteem will improve. In turn, he’ll become much more sociable.

Food hunt

Just as with humans, completing a task and achieving goals will also improve your dog’s self-confidence. That’s exactly what this game of hiding food will do.

First of all, choose a portion of food that your pet loves. Let him smell it a bit, but don’t let him eat it! Then, leave your pet in another room while you hide different pieces of the food around the house. When you’re finished, let him loose to search!

We’re sure that once your pet finds all the pieces, he’ll be happy and confident. Do this exercise from time to time to boost your dog’s self-confidence. 

Give me your paw

A dog playing with his owner.

In addition to improving your dog’s self-confidence, this exercise will also help with his obedience training. However, you have to keep in mind that positive reinforcement is essential to achieving good results.

Therefore, it’s important to give your pet a treat or a piece of food that he likes every time he obeys the order ‘give me your paw.’ That way, it’ll be easier for him to do it later without any reward. And, on top of that, he’ll be a confident and happy dog for having achieved something positive.

However, even though games are very useful, you shouldn’t overdo it with them. Overwhelming your animal will cause more problems. So, if you want to improve your dog’s confidence, first choose which activities you want to try with him. Then, make sure you’re doing them with discretion and balance. 

Remember, the goal of these games is to have a happy, sociable, self-controlled, and obedient dog. Regardless of the activities you want to use, you shouldn’t shout at or scold your animal. Positive reinforcement always works. Use it with patience and a smile.