Pyramid of basic needs of a dog

Spread the love

Happy dog

Adopting a dog is a fun adventure, but it also involves responsibilities. As the owner or master, it will be up to you to cover the basic needs of your dog. Food, grooming, veterinary care, exercise are some of the main ones, but there are also emotional needs that you must satisfy.

What does a dog need to be happy? Today, these items are measured through a pyramid created by trainer Linda Michaels. We show you the important aspects that it points out.

Index of contents

  • 1 Nutrition and feeding
  • 2 Exercise and games
  • 3 Rest
  • 4 Shelter and house
  • 5 Cleanliness
  • 6 Medical attention
  • 7 Security, love, trust and compression
  • 8 Socialization and play
  • 9 training
  • 10 Cognitive development

Nutrition and feeding

The base of the pyramid focuses on meeting the basic biological needs of the dog. Providing quality food to your dog is one of the most important steps in its development. Either I think dry, wet or a homemade dietIt must be adapted to the age, breed and physical conditions of your dog.

Food frequency and portions also vary with the size and stage of the dog’s life. Good nutrition affects your health and your physical appearance.

It is important that you constantly offer a container of fresh water. Clean the bowl daily and change the water. During the summer, avoid that it stays in places with a lot of sun.

Exercise and games

Physical activity is part of the life of a healthy dog. Not only does it allow you to maintain your ideal weight, but it also contributes to your happiness and strengthens the emotional ties with your masters.

Many breeds require daily outdoor exercise, as they are more active in character. In case of not having it, these breeds develop behavior problems.

To daily exercise abroad, stimulation needs to be added at home. Games are a great way to do it. Chasing the ball, hiding prizes and intelligence games are perfect for entertaining your dog and spending time with him.

Related content  How many puppies does a dog have? According to size and race



As important as play and food is rest. Your dog needs 12-14 hours of sleep a day. Typically, you spend 8 to 9 hours resting at night, and dole out the rest during the day.

Now if your dog is having trouble sleeping or barking all night, you need to find out the cause.

Shelter and house

Shelter and home are also part of a dog’s basic needs. This means that your canine friend requires a home to live. In addition, you must provide a space in your home that is only for him.

In the defined area, the dog needs to have a comfortable bed, warm in winter and cool in summer. This space should be quiet and allow you to rest, but without isolating it from family life.

  • What are the best dog beds?


Hygiene is also part of any dog’s healthy life. The frequency of the bath corresponds to the amount of exercise the animal performs. However, it is recommended to do it at least once a month.

In addition to the bath, cut your dog’s nails when required and check their ears for accumulations of wax. Getting your puppy used to brushing teeth will allow him to take better care of his teeth.

Similarly, the dog’s belongings and the places where it plays should be cleaned frequently.

Medical attention

One or two visits a year to the vet is the minimum that your dog needs. Keep track of deworming and vaccination dates, and stick to the schedule.

In addition to this routine checkup, see a specialist when you discover symptoms of illness in your dog. Lack of appetite, fatigue, vomiting and diarrhea, bleeding, lumps on the skin, bad breath, wrinkles, wounds, etc., there are endless signs that indicate a health problem.

Security, love, trust and compression

The next layer of the pyramid designed by Linda Michaels corresponds to the emotional needs of the dog. Biological compliance is important, but your dog requires more than food and shelter to be happy.

Related content  I think vegan for vegetarian dogs

Safety is related to the protection your dog must feel inside the home. If he is comfortable, you treat him well and he is not exposed to annoying situations, such as excessive noise, he will feel calm.

The emotional bond is also important. Playing with your dog, petting him, talking to him with affection and spending time with him are activities that will help create a beautiful relationship. Dogs don’t trust all people, so it behooves you to become their best friend.

Understanding the dog is also wanting it. Many times, their reactions are mistaken for not knowing the body language of dogs. Knowing what things like lifting the leg mean is essential for a good coexistence.

Helping your dog adapt to the home and protecting it from situations that scare it, such as fireworks, will make it very happy and grow healthy.

Before any change in behavior, remember to go to your vet. If your dog is nervous, stressed, or shows fear, there is a reason for that.


Socialization and play

Socialization is an important part of any dog’s physical and emotional development. Consists in allow interaction with other people, dogs and pets; In this way, your dog will learn to relate to them and make new friends..

It is recommended that socialization be started as a puppy. In adulthood, a poorly socialized dog develops behavioral problems, such as aggressiveness, nervousness, and destructive behaviors.

Taking him to the park, going for a walk and inviting people home are ways to contribute to this process. Furthermore, these activities strengthen the bond between you and your pet. This level of the pyramid corresponds to the social needs of the dog.


Linda Michaels also defines kind training needs. These refer to educate your dog according to positive reinforcement, which provides better results than other types of training.

  • How to Educate a Dog Using Positive Reinforcement
Related content  How old does a dog live? Complete info according to breed and size

Despite belonging to another species, dogs have lived with humans for thousands of years. This is possible thanks to the learning of orders and norms that allow a harmonious relationship; Herein lies the importance of training.

Adult dogs and puppies can receive canine training, although it is recommended to start within a few months of life. Ba
sic instructions allow the dog to follow you, answer your call, and stop when prompted.
. This is essential to take him for a walk outside the house, as he will come to you when you consider that he is in danger.

Positive reinforcement is offering rewards during training. Under this system, the dog repeats a behavior to get the reward. The prizes can be some dog treats, pieces of meat, cheese or fruit, as well as pats, caresses and phrases of encouragement. Done properly, you can stop offering grocery prizes as training progresses.

During this process, you must be patient and respect the dog’s learning rhythms. If you don’t know how to start training him, you can attend classes at an academy or hire a dog trainer.

Cognitive development

The last level in a dog’s basic needs pyramid includes meeting cognitive needs. Physical exercise is essential for your pet, but it also requires activities that develop his intelligence and pose challenges for him..

One way to meet these needs is acquire intelligence games for dogs. There are all kinds of items, but the goal is for the dog to learn that, with some action, he will get a reward. These games are cheap and you can buy several for your dog.

  • Intelligence games for dogs

The most popular is the Kong for dogs, but there are also boards, games to search and find, among others.

Also, walking around new places stimulates your dog’s intelligence and curiosity. At each site there are different smells and textures, this will make you want to explore and have a lot of fun. These are the basic needs that you must satisfy so that your dog is happy.