Has your dog been hiding under a piece of furniture or in an isolated corner? While this change in behavior could happen overnight, it might also signal a deeper problem. So how do you tell the difference between a temporary concern and normal behavior? In this article, you’ll find out why your dog is hiding and what you should do about it.
Hiding because of a traumatic event
Dogs are sensitive to their environment and the atmosphere around them. Some events may upset their behavior and cause them to hide to protect themselves.
Your dog may feel the need to find a safe haven after a traumatic experience. While the word “trauma” may sound intense, it covers many everyday realities that can frighten your pet. For example, the sound of fireworks, the roar of a vacuum cleaner, or the roar of a thunderstorm are all stressful sounds that your dog might be trying to get away from.
Their instincts push them to hide as a matter of survival. If you are tying to get your dog to stop hiding when they are traumatized, it is counterproductive to take them away from their sanctuary. Allow your dog to take refuge under the couch or in a closet, as long as they are comfortable there. However, it is important to identify the cause of this trauma to prevent the situation from getting worse.
Our tip: Hire a dog trainer to help your dog deal with their trauma using a systematic desensitization process.
They are protecting themselves from your mood swings
After a difficult day or during a period of intense stress, our tone of voice can sometimes become louder or more authoritative. Even unintentionally, our attitude can cause dogs to change their behavior. Your dog be trying to get away from these negative emotions and trying to escape from you to avoid being confronted with them again.
Our tip: No one is perfect and everyone can be unhappy or angry from time to time. However, the key is to be aware that your behavior may upset your dog and make effforts to not act that way again in front of them.
They are scared
Are you thrilled about a new plant that you bought for the living room or your latest furniture purchase? Your dog may not feel the same way about it. When dogs are scared, they prefer to hide rather than face their fears. If your dog suddenly starts hiding, it may be because something in their environment changed. The arrival of a new pet can also be quite upsetting and stressful for dogs.
Our tip: If your dog is afraid of an object, you can either get rid of it or remove it from their sight. If your dog is scared because you have adopted another pet, it’s best to hire a dog behaviorist to help calm your dog’s anxieties.
They lost their bearings
Dogs are easygoing and adaptable pets. With that being said, this does not that they are never disturbed by sudden changes in their living environment. This could be from the arrival of a new family member or from moving. In an effort to protect themselves, your dog might create a little haven of peace where they can isolate themselves. To help your dog through this transitional period, it’s essential that you pay extra attention to them so that they don’t feel left out.
When your dog moves into a new home, it’s important to make them feel at home as soon as possible. Even though your dog may need time to get used to the new place, you can reassure your dog by providing them with familiar objects that remind them of their old home. For example, you can keep their favorite basket or blanket. Laundry can wait until your dog is settled into their new home!
Our tip: Before you move in, let your dog take a tour of the property, so that they can feel more comfortable there and make the place their own.
Is my dog hiding because of their personality?
It’s not always relevant to find a traumatic event to understand your dog’s need for isolation. It may be your dog’s personality that causes them to seek refuge.
You dog doesn’t like affection
Some pets love being the center of attention, while others are less outgoing and affectionate. If a member of the household is showering your dog with so much attention that it’s becoming a bit suffocating for them, your dog may feel the need to stay away. Rather than force your dog to endure an avalanche of hugs, respect their personality and privacy.
Is your dog usually fond of scratching and petting? If your furry friend suddenly rejects your affection, it’s best to consult a veterinarian. Your dog’s need to hide might be a cover for their physical pain, which only a professional can diagnose.
Our tip: If your dog isn’t very affectionate, you can make your moments together positive by playing games together.
Your dog needs solitude
You’re in the middle of a petting session when your dog suddenly decides to take off. There’s no need to worry, your dog may just need to rest. Don’t chase your dog to their hiding place because your dog may show their fangs. It is very important to understand and respect your pet’s limits. If you have young children, it’s important to teach them that your dog need’s personal space.
Our tip: Dogs need it to be especially quiet when they are sleeping. Disturbing them during their sleep may run the risk of them seeking peace and quiet elsewhere and ending up isolating himself more and more frequently.
When should I be alarmed?
The need to hide is not necessarily a warning sign. It may be a temporary, even benign concern. Instead, it is the abruptness of the change in your dog’s behavior that should raise the alarm. Dogs also isolate themselves when they are feeling ill. In addition to the need to hide, some unusual symptoms may be a sign of a deeper health problem, such as a loss of appetite or sudden hair loss. Consult a veterinarian as soon as possible.
There is also a difference between a dog that hides temporarily and an apathetic animal that hides in a corner. If your dog hides in a corner and doesn’t move, it may be because they are at the end of their life. Some dogs will seek out their owner’s presence, while others will prefer to find a place to hide. Support your dog through this difficult time with lots of love and attention. If your pet seems to be in pain, help them by going to the veterinarian.
You might also like reading this article: Separation anxiety in dogs