Zack Keithy, our author, has been a certified veterinarian technician for over 6 years (contact him here). The articles written here are based on his expertise and experience, combined with a review by our expert vet reviewers. Learn more about us here.
Bringing your dog out on walks is a great bonding activity, and sometimes your friends or family might want to take over this duty too.
Alas, they won’t walk with anyone but you and your partner only, and you hope to change that.
After all, socializing your dog is an important part of its growth, and others love it too!
Well, this can happen in new puppies where they are highly attached to their owners, or it could be an older dog who has been treated badly by other people and now just doesn’t trust anyone else!
In this post, let’s learn more about this behavior and how you can get your dog to open up to other people too.
- Why Does My Dog Only Want Me (or Both of Us) to Walk Him? 7 Reasons
- How Do I Get My Dog to Walk With Other People?
- Do Dogs Only Get Attached to One Person?
- What Dog Breeds Are More Likely to Bond With a Single Person?
- In Conclusion: Dog Will Only Walk With Both of Us/One Person
Why Does My Dog Only Want Me (or Both of Us) to Walk Him? 7 Reasons
Your dog might only walk with one person or both of you for a number of reasons.
Some are simple, others, not so much, and will require more time to make your dog feel comfortable opening up.
1. Lack of excitement
We all know dogs love to play and some dogs especially love their walking time.
However, if the person bringing them on the walk does not exhibit the same kind of energy, your dog might lose interest quickly.
This is especially true if the walker has a calm demeanor and doesn’t interact with your dog much.
If this is the case, try finding someone else to walk with you who can provide more excitement to get your dog engaged.
Doggy says, you might like this too: Dog Obsessed With the Water Hose?
2. No confidence
If your dog is not confident, it may be hesitant to get out of the house or stay around other people.
This can cause them to feel uncomfortable and scared during walks and might even lead them to try and run away.
You should take time before each walk to build up their confidence so that they will feel more secure in their environment.
Doggy says, you might like this too: Chihuahua Peeing in the House [What Now?]
3. Something along the route
Your dog might have experienced something unpleasant during the last walk and is feeling extremely uncomfortable doing it again.
The problem could be caused by walking along a busy street, near construction workers who might be loud and frightening or passing by a house with unfriendly dogs.
If this is the case, try walking them somewhere else where they have never been before and see if that makes a difference.
This will be especially obvious if your dog refuses to walk in a certain direction.
4. Bad experience
When your dog is young and still learning about the world, a bad experience can have a lasting impact on its behavior.
For example, if they were once bitten by another dog and now avoid all dogs in general, that’s understandable.
If you see this happening, try to figure out what the cause of the bad experience was.
Doggy says, check this out too: Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Peeing in the House [Solutions]
5. Afraid of strangers
Some dogs are naturally afraid of strangers, especially if they have had bad experiences with them or just never learned that people are a good thing.
This can be hard to break, but try getting your dog used to being around new people.
Make sure that when you take him out in public he is comfortable meeting new faces and feeling safe while doing so.
You may need to introduce them slowly over several sessions until they are comfortable with one another.
6. Overly attached
A dog that is overly attached to you can lead to separation anxiety.
This often happens when a dog is left alone for long periods of time and becomes very anxious when its owner leaves the house.
They may become destructive or have other behavioral problems as a result of this anxiety.
Some dogs are so attached to their owners that they don’t know how to act around other people and animals.
7. Instinct to guard your home
Certain dogs have a strong natural tendency to want to protect their owners and home, which it regards as their territory.
If you are away and you are enlisting the help of friends or family to walk your dog, it might not want to go on walks with them due to its desire to protect its dwelling.
This is more likely to happen in dog breeds such as German Shepherds and Doberman Pinschers.
Doggy says, you might like this too: Why do Chihuahuas burrow?
How Do I Get My Dog to Walk With Other People?
There are some ways that can help your dog be more receptive when it comes to walking with other people.
While we may think that training our dog is the key, we also need to remember to pass on some tips to the person performing the duty.
After all, we cannot expect everyone to know how to handle our dogs, right?
Follow these tips to ensure a higher chance of success.
Train the walker
Sometimes, it could be as simple as teaching the person walking your dog what to do.
As we are not there to ensure things go smoothly, they need to know what to do and not impose their own way.
Importantly, inform them not to show any negative behavior such as yelling, panicking, or pulling on the leash.
These are all going to make your dog less interested in going on walks with them.
First of all, make sure you have the right collar and leash to do the job!
An ill-fitting collar will make your dog very uncomfortable and not willing to wear it. Get this step right and you are halfway there.
Next, you need to understand the basics of leash training (it’s really easy) so that you give it confidence and teach it discipline.
Bring toys along
A walk can mean an opportunity for your dog to relieve itself outside, but there is not a lot of satisfaction to that. Maybe it’s just a 5 to them.
But what if you up the fun and bring along their favorite toy such as a ball for them to chase (on a long leash obviously)?
This makes the walk infinitely more fun and exciting which will make them more willing to get out.
Ensure that you have a bag of your dog’s favorite treats when they are out for walks with a new person.
This should not be used as a lure to get them walking, but rather to reward good behavior such as keeping up properly with the person.
Instead of handing over the duties of dog walking to another person right away, get them to go on walks with you and your dog.
This way, your dog gets acquainted with your friend or family member and will associate them with positive memories.
This will make it infinitely easier the next time this person wants to walk your dog alone.
Get professional help
In some cases where your dog is still not cooperating, you might need to engage a dog behaviorist to get to the bottom of the matter.
There might be some other underlying issues that we simply cannot detect right away.
Doggy says, consider reading this too: Why does your dog skip when walking?
Do Dogs Only Get Attached to One Person?
It’s fairly typical for some dog breeds to be utterly dedicated, attached, and loyal to “their person.”
Puppies in particular have a tendency to form bonds with the person who pays them the most attention, gives them food, and takes care of them on a daily basis.
Although they may be friendly with various family members and friends, they always regard that one relationship as being the most important far beyond all others.
What Dog Breeds Are More Likely to Bond With a Single Person?
German Shepherds, Chow Chows, Vizslas (are they good guard dogs?), and Akitas are just a few dog breeds that are sometimes referred to as “one-man dogs.”
Take note though, a dedicated owner, dedicated bonding time, and lots of affection are all necessary for a devoted, one-person dog.
Without it, they can feel anxious and engage in harmful conduct.
In Conclusion: Dog Will Only Walk With Both of Us/One Person
If you find yourself having thoughts like “my dog will only walk with me”, it is really not something too uncommon.
Most of the time though, this behavior can be improved with some training and a lot of patience.
By socializing your dog, you will be able to get it to open up to your family and friends and enjoy long walks together!
You’ve made it to the end, but I hope it’s not the end of our journey. We want to hear your voice! Share your thoughts, problems, suggestions, or anything related to your dog in the comments section. And don’t forget to join our newsletter today too.