Does your dog adore you more than all the treats in the world?! You can totally tell right?!; When you walk through the front door and they are SOOOOO HAPPPPYYYY TO SEE YOU!; When you settle down at home at the end of the night and they curl up as close a possible to you; When they look at you lovingly from under the dinner table. But do you ever wonder if they know just how much you love them too and are you finding ways to show them?
In the same way that our relationships require time and attention to give and receive what all parties need, our relationships with our dogs also important to maintain our bonds with them. Now, I am definitely NOT an expert and am in no way trained in dog behaviour, but in addition to the romantic doggy date that you have planned with your four-legged loved one, watching them to see what they value most, could be a great way to identify what will give them an extra sprinkle of delight this Valentines.
ACTS OF SERVICE
If they're eager to please, these dogs probably do not require many treats or words of encouragement to respond happily, because pleasing you is reward enough. Maybe your dog is a working dog or is happiest when they have a role or job in your household? Either way, our dogs serve us daily by being our constant companions. Go that extra mile to do something that you know they will love in return…homemade doggie cookies? Come home early from work? An extra long walk?
If your dog would often choose toys over treats to curl up and chew, you may have gifter on your paws. Show your pup a little bit of love in return by gifting them with a little something, something when rewarding and reinforcing positive moments. You'll not only be able to incorporate a high reward to your training methods, but you'll be providing them with a little moment of happiness. Totally worth it right?
WORDS OF AFFIRMATION
If your pup is a big responder to a cheerful, high pitched tone, why not take the opportunity work on some training to give your furry bestie lots of opportunities for praise in all of the right moments? If your dog loves nothing more than hearing how good they’ve been, that tail will be wagging away for hours. Not only will you feel good whilst making your dog feel good, but you'll be strengthening those commands that you regularly work on.
Waking up to a doggie bum in the face is not always ideal, but it could be their own way of keeping as close as possible to you. After all, we all need a sense of security sometimes! If you think this is the case, a little bit of lap time in the evening and a good ol' scratch behind the ear could be exactly what the vet ordered. Schedule in that evening Netflix and chill night, just so you can give them a chance to be near you the way that they are most comfortable with. Even give them a relaxing groom, if pamper sessions are top of their list of favourite past times. Make sure you read the signals your dogs are giving you though. They may not be ready for a full on cuddle sesh or may just not enjoy getting up close and pawsonal for long periods of time.
If you regularly turn around to find a your pooch has snuck up on you, they probably just want to be around you. You are their absolute world after all! Make some time to just BE with your pooch if you think this is what they love the mostest. Those long walks on the dog beach or an extra long game of tug or fetch are good for both of you for so many reasons.
I'm a big fan of 'the little things' in life that bring you so much joy. I guarantee your dog already does a million and one 'little things' daily that make you giggle and light you up. Even if you're freaking out about the hole they've dug in the living room now, it's a story that you will cherish as much as the photos you have of them. So love them and show you love them as much as they love you. Happy Valentines Day and a big thank you for reading
Your Pawtographer from Smalls & Talls x