Dogs have a reputation for being loyal companions of humans. They spend most of their time pleasing and guarding their owners and love to follow their commands. But sometimes, a dog may show aversion towards its owners and start ignoring them.
Finding your dog disregarding you completely can be disheartening, to say the least. Many dog owners want to know what has brought this change in the behavior of their dogs. They wonder, “why is my dog ignoring me?”
There can be a number of reasons why your dog may have started being oblivious to your presence or not following your commands. In this article, we have listed all the common reasons why a dog may neglect you and what you can do to tackle this issue.
So, without further ado, let’s dive in and find out the possible reasons behind this behavior.
What Does It Mean When Your Dog Ignores You?
It is not that hard to notice when your otherwise friendly and loving dog starts to ignore you. He would not come to you when you call him and would not follow any of your commands. This can be because of a medical condition, but it is also very much likely that he has behavioral or training issues.
But before you jump to any conclusion and change your training method, it is important to consult a vet and discuss this issue. A vet would examine your dog and would let you know if there is a medical reason behind your dog’s behavior.
Why Is My Dog Ignoring Me? 5 Potential Reasons
As mentioned above, there can be medical as well as behavioral reasons when your dog starts ignoring you. So, here we will be taking a closer look at all the potential reasons why a dog may be disregarding you.
1. Medical Reasons—A Ruptured Eardrum
If you find your dog has suddenly started ignoring you, has balance issues, or seems scared or surprised, it may be suffering from hearing issues. A ruptured eardrum can make it hard for your dog to hear. An eardrum is a thin membrane separating the middle ear from the inner one. This membrane aids in hearing, so if it is ruptured, it may lead to hearing loss.
In such cases, your dog is not disregarding you, but in fact, he cannot hear you. This medical issue is also accompanied by other symptoms such as head tilting, ear rubbing, and pain in dogs. There can also be a discharge coming from your dog’s ears.
Infections of the middle ear, a head or an ear injury, changes in atmospheric pressure, or loud noises can lead to eardrum ruptures.
2. Psychological Reasons—Depression
Another possible reason your dog doesn’t listen to you can be depression. If a dog is depressed, he may lose interest in things he used to enjoy before. He wouldn’t want to interact with you, participate in playtime, or eat anything. Additionally, your pooch would sleep more and hide from you. These signs show your dog is depressed, and that is why he may ignore you. Thus, it is important to identify the possible factors that may be contributing to making your canine pal depressed.
If there are no visible changes in your dog’s life, such as moving to a new place or the addition of another pet to the home, the dog may be suffering from some disease. Medical conditions such as cancer, diabetes, or kidney failure may affect a dog’s mental health.
3. Training Reasons—Lack of Proper Training
It is very common for a dog to ignore you or lose interest in you if it is not properly trained. Early and proper dog training can make your dog obedient and follow your commands. For example, to effectively treat train your dog, you should give a treat within three seconds when your dog carries out your command or finish a task successfully.
This will help your dog to associate a treat with his obedient behavior. However, it needs to be kept in mind that too many treats can be unhealthy, so you should also learn some other effective ways to train your canine pal without treats.
4. Conditioning Reasons—Improper Punishment
A dog doesn’t always show their best behavior, and there may be times when he misbehaves. Thus, when your canine pal misbehaves or doesn’t obey your commands, you shouldn’t punish him or talk harshly. This way, your dog may associate your voice or your command with negative consequences. Thus, it is important to remember that whenever your canine pal misbehaves, you shouldn’t punish him inappropriately.
5. Lack of Attention
Dogs are loyal animals, and they crave their owner’s attention. But many a time, owners cannot give them proper attention. They don’t play with their canine fellow because they are busy. Leaving a dog alone for a long time and not giving him proper attention can make him sad and depressed. This results in a disregard towards their owner.
Thus, if you want your dog to be happy and healthy, it is important to give him time and attention. Set out a specific time from your busy schedule for your dog, play with him, and take him out for walks. This will keep your pooch happy, and he wouldn’t ignore you.
Why is My Dog Ignoring Me? What Can I Do?
As we have tackled your query, “why is my dog ignoring me?” we will now talk about the measures you can take to help prevent such behavior. Below, we have discussed what needs to be done when you struggle with a dog that doesn’t listen to you or shows disregard.
- First things first, you should closely observe your canine pal and notice the changes in his personality. If your dog seems interested in other things but does not respond when you call him or seems confused or startled, he may be suffering from hearing issues such as hearing loss. In such cases, you should consult a vet and get your pooch checked for any serious issues.
- As we have discussed above, your canine friend may ignore you if he is depressed or sad. For this, you can try spending more time with him and give him more attention. This will help to make your dog feel happy, and he will slowly get back to being joyful and thriving.
- You should also try to change your training style if you suspect your pooch is oblivious to you. Aggressive training can lead to associating your commands with negative feelings by the dog, so he may start avoiding you. Thus, training should always be done in a light-hearted and fun manner so that your dog takes it as a game rather than a chore.
- Lastly, if your dog has started disregarding you, it may be because you don’t give him proper attention and time. To solve this problem, you should take more time out and give him attention. You should take him out, play with him, and let him release his pent-up energy, so he doesn’t become frustrated.
Final Words: Why is my dog ignoring me?
Still not sure and wondering, “why is my dog ignoring me?” you can seek help from a professional dog trainer. They can teach you how to effectively communicate with your canine pal. This way, you will also be able to bring the necessary changes to your training style, so your dog listens to you and follows your commands.