Is it wrong to humanize a dog? Tips to avoid anthropomorphism

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humanized dog

We love our furry and we love to cuddle them. In fact, it is not strange that we speak to them like a son. But be careful, because an excess of affection can be the origin of a real problem.

Do you want to know why a dog should not be humanized? Well, let’s see what canine anthropomorphism consists of and how you can avoid it.

Index of contents

  • 1 How does a humanized dog behave?
  • 2 Tips to avoid humanizing a dog
  • 3 How can a dog be dehumanized?

How does a humanized dog behave?

Anthropomorphism is to attribute to a dog characteristics, habits or emotions that are exclusively human. Yes, he also feels joy, fears, reasons, remembers and has a very special chemistry with us.

However, holding him all day like a baby or dressing him like a princess can make you lose your own identity and that you end up feeling frustrated, anxious, and insecure.

humanized dog

This emotional imbalance tends to lead to certain behavioral problems. The most common are:

  • Excessive barking
  • Shreds at home
  • Aggression towards other dogs or people
  • Depression

The truth is that humanization in dogs is an increasingly frequent phenomenon in our society and has a very detrimental effect, since prevents them from having a full life. Therefore, we must correct not only what they do, but especially the way we have to treat them.

That does not mean that we have to ignore them, or neglect their needs. The key is to achieve a balance: show them all our love, but without forgetting that our canine friends do not reflect or interpret what is happening around them as you and I do.

Tips to avoid humanizing a dog

In order not to fall into this common mistake, there are some very useful tips to avoid humanizing a dog. Especially these three recommendations:

  1. Let it behave like a dog: Preventing him from socializing with other furry and suppressing his instincts is not a good idea: it will make him fear contact with others and he will not know how to interact. This confusion and fear can make him violent.
  2. Find out what the needs of your breed are: There are dogs that, by their very nature, need to run, sniff, or explore their environment more than others. We recommend that you document this and that you encourage activities that make you happy and help you relieve stress.
  3. Don’t fall for fads like canine tattoos: He thinks that he cannot choose and that this type of practice can cause totally unnecessary pain, discomfort or infection.

The ideal is to take into account the problems caused by humanization beforehand, so as not to experience its consequences. But the question is: if I have already fallen into anthropomorphism … am I still in time to rectify? The answer is: yes, but you must take it seriously and make a great effort for the good of your furry.

dog in arms

How can a dog be dehumanized?

The first step in beginning to dehumanize a dog is to recognize that it is we who have fostered his bad attitudes, by treating him as if he were a child.

With this point clear, the next thing will be to correct what we do not do well and re-educate you so that you can recover your identity.

Some examples of how to do it:

  • Stop dressing him up and putting dresses or decorations on him. If they are not strictly necessary for identification or protection reasons, it is best not to do so.
  • Start setting limits and remember them. It is important for the dog to understand that it cannot continue to act like a human, eating at the table or sleeping in bed.
  • Don’t keep overprotecting him , to the point of never letting him leave the house for fear of getting sick or getting dirty; Don’t stop me from doing something because I think it’s “too small” or “too clumsy.” This can make you increasingly frustrated and depressed. Let him experience for himself and face the problems or obstacles that come his way.
  • Dogs know how to clean themselves , so it is not good that you become obsessed with their hygiene. Continuous baths, anus cleaning and the use of human colonies so that it does not “smell like a dog” are unnecessary. Believe us, living in an aseptic bubble does you no good.

With responsibility and patience, you will surely have a much healthier bond with your dog friend. You just have to show him how important he is to you, while still respecting his own nature.

If after a while you see that the situation does not improve, seek the help of an expert in canine behavior. A professional, especially in extreme cases, can accompany you in the process of canine dehumanization. Do you dare to accept the challenge and avoid falling into anthropomorphism from now on? Your furry will surely feel much better.