Why are dogs so unpredictable when greeting strangers and people they know?
Stopping your dog from peeing while greeting
I’m a Veteran’s Day baby. And for my birthday, my mother gifted me with a T-shirt set that said “The Boss” on the human shirt and “The Real Boss” on the dog’s shirt. As adamant as I am about pet training, there are times when my four-legged, unemployed roommate gives me a run for my money.
She’s the type who will let me give her a pedicure (pictured above) but will repeatedly ignore me hissing at her to stop laying on the waterfall back of my couch. She’s the type who will let me sling her over my shoulder but will throw a grumbling/growling tantrum if I try to eat peanut butter without her. She’s the type who will sit and stay on command but still sneak and eat foreign objects off the ground if I’m not looking. In other words, she’s a handful—and bossy.
There is one other thing about this dog that makes her even more of a boss than me—she is very, very, very territorial about who can enter my home. I didn’t ask for a watchdog nor did I train her to be one, but I damn sure got one. From leaping into my windows to barking at anyone too close to my entrance doors, I can pretty much wave goodbye to hiring a stranger on Rover or Wag! without several meet-and-greets.
What throws me off more about Junee (my Hound mix) is sometimes she’s even unpredictable to people she does know. The most peculiar instance was on Friday, this past Veteran’s Day. Junee’s reaction to seeing my mother enter the front door was to beeline around the room, bark like mad and parole the front door so my mother couldn’t move closer into the living room.
I was both confused and then worried. Was my dog going to bite my mother, the same woman who scooped her up two weeks after the puppy arrived home? My mother stood still and watched Junee calm down enough to sniff her feet. After one sniff, Junee looked at my mother again—much closer underneath the cap she was wearing—squatted down and peed on the floor. (My dog has not peed on my floors since August of 2021.)
It didn’t take me long to figure out why this reaction was both normal and abnormal.