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Stop! You Could Be Ruining Your Dog's Trust Without Realizing!

Stop! You Could Be Ruining Your Dog's Trust Without Realizing! | Premier Pups Blog
Published Friday, July 21, 2023 by Elena R.

Today, we're going to talk about something very important: ruining your dog's trust. Trust is like a special friendship between you and your dog. It's like a secret handshake that only you two know. But sometimes, we can accidentally ruin this special trust. Let's learn how! 


owner and dog sharing a moment of trust and affectionJust like you trust your best friend to share your favorite toys, your dog trusts you too. This is what we call a dog-human relationship. But, trust is like a seesaw, it goes both ways. You trust your dog, and your dog trusts you.  
Sometimes, without meaning to, we can ruin our dog's trust. It's like accidentally breaking your friend's favorite toy. Your friend might be sad and not want to play with you for a while. The same thing can happen with your dog. 

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Common Mistakes That Ruin a Dog's Trust 

dog avoiding direct eye contact indicating a lack of trust or discomfort

Now, let's talk about some things we might do that can ruin our dog's trust. 

  • Forcing your dog to do things they don't want to do often: Imagine if someone made you eat broccoli every day, even though you don't like it. You wouldn't like that, would you? It's the same with dogs. If we force them to do things they don't like, they might not trust us as much. 
  • Forcing your dog into situations they don't like: Imagine if you were scared of the dark, but someone kept turning off the lights. That wouldn't be nice, right? Dogs feel the same way when we put them in situations they're scared of. 
  • Taking their things away frequently: How would you feel if someone kept taking away your favorite toy? Not very happy, right? Dogs feel the same way when we take away their favorite things. 
  • Not listening to their body language: Dogs can't talk like we do, but they can show us how they feel through their body language. If we don't pay attention to what they're trying to tell us, they might feel like we don't understand them. 
  • Not being an advocate for your dog: Being an advocate means standing up for someone. If we don't stand up for our dogs when they need us, they might feel like we're not on their team. 
  • Ignoring your dog's needs, desires, or genetic predispositions: Just like you have things you need and want, dogs do too. And just like you might be good at some things and not so good at others because of who you are, dogs have things they're good at and not so good at because of who they are. If we ignore these things, our dogs might feel like we don't really know them. 
    RELATED: Why Is My Dog Shaking? 

The Impact of Negative Reinforcement on Ruining Your Dog's Trust 

owner showing affection to their dog trying to rebuild trust after a misunderstandingNow, let's talk about something called negative reinforcement. This is like when you got a time-out for not cleaning your room. But sometimes, being too strict or overly corrective with your dog can ruin their trust. 

Imagine if you got a time-out every time you made a small mistake, like spilling a little water while drinking. That wouldn't be fair, right? It's the same with dogs. If we're too strict or use harsh methods of discipline, we can ruin their trust.  

It's like telling your dog they're in trouble all the time, even for little things. This can make them very sad and scared. 

RELATED: How To Crate Train A Puppy 

Rebuilding Trust After Ruining Your Dog's Trust 

positive reinforcement training session between a dog and its ownerDon't worry, just like a broken toy, trust can be fixed too. Here's how we can rebuild our dog's trust after ruining it: 

  • The Importance of Patience in Rebuilding Trust: Just like it takes time to clean up a messy room, it takes time to rebuild trust. We need to be patient and give our dog lots of love and kindness. 
  • Giving Your Dog Plenty of Space: Imagine if someone kept following you around, even when you wanted to be alone. You wouldn't like that, would you? Dogs need their space too. Let's give them some alone time when they need it.
  • The Role of Consistency in Regaining Trust: Consistency is like always brushing your teeth before bed. When we're consistent, our dogs know what to expect from us. This can help them trust us again. 

Remember, everyone makes mistakes, but we can always fix them. And the most important thing is, we love our dogs and they love us. So let's keep learning and growing together. 
RELATED: Week One with A New Puppy: See What to Expect 


playful interaction between a dog and its owner strengthening their bond and trust

We've learned a lot about ruining a dog's trust today. Trust is a special friendship between you and your dog. But sometimes, we can ruin this trust by mistake. When that happens, it's important to say sorry and try to fix it. 

We also learned that we can rebuild trust by being patient, giving our dogs space, and being consistent. And remember, it's okay to make mistakes. The most important thing is that we love our dogs and they love us. 

So let's keep learning and growing together, and let's always try to be the best friends we can be for our dogs. After all, they're our best friends too. 

Scroll down to see FAQs about a dog's trust!

Elena R.

About The Author

Elena is a leading expert in the field of dog behavior, care, and training, with over a decade of experience in writing about dogs. As a published writer and lifelong dog enthusiast, Elena currently shares her home with three beloved canine companions. She is dedicated to staying up to date on the latest advancements in dog care and training, ensuring that her articles provide readers with accurate and valuable insights. With her extensive knowledge and passion for all things canine, Elena's contributions to the Premier Pups community offer both expertise and authority on a wide range of dog-related topics.
Elena R. - Author Photo

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is dog trust? Dog trust is like a special friendship between you and your dog. It's when your dog knows they can count on you, just like you can count on your best friend.

How do you know if a dog trusts you? When a dog trusts you, they might wag their tail, lick your face, or follow you around. It's like when your friend smiles at you or wants to play with you.

What makes dogs trust you? Dogs trust you when you're kind to them, play with them, and take care of them. It's like how you trust your friend who shares their toys and helps you when you're sad.

What is good about dogs trust? Trusting dogs are happy dogs! When dogs trust you, they feel safe and loved. It's like how you feel happy and safe with your best friend.

Are dogs naturally trusting? Some dogs are naturally trusting, just like some people are naturally friendly. But trust also needs to be built, like building a tower with blocks.

Do dogs like being hugged? Some dogs love hugs, but some don't. It's important to pay attention to how your dog feels. If they seem happy and relaxed when you hug them, they probably like it.

How do dogs sleep if they trust you? Dogs who trust you might sleep close to you or even on their backs. This is because they feel safe with you.

Do dogs know I'm sorry? Dogs might not understand the words "I'm sorry," but they can understand when you feel sorry. If you've made a mistake, you can show your dog you're sorry by being extra kind and loving.