Why Can’t My Dog Give Me Personal Space?

Why can’t my dog just give me personal space?

You drag yourself home at the end of the day, hoping to crash on the couch, except Fido is there with a welcome home party.

He wants all your attention, and he wants it now.

So, why can’t he just give you a few minutes to chill?

Good question.

Fortunately, there are easy answers and easy solutions!

Why Can’t My Dog Give Me Personal Space?

Dogs show their happiness at seeing you again by their excitement.

They are very social animals who love being in groups and look for a leader. In the home environment, you are the pack leader.

So, why can’t your pack give their leader a little personal time? Read on to find out!

1. Dogs have no concept of time.

It does not matter if you are gone for 5 minutes, 5 hours or 5 days. Your dog misses you! To him, you have been gone forever.

When you walk through that door your dog is beyond relieved and ecstatic to see you.

You might have been out in the world, but to your dog, you are his world. He has been patiently waiting for you to return. He might even have been anxious about you returning.

The first thing you should do when you return home is to spend time with your dog. I always do this with my dog. It really helps to reassure her that I am home and I missed her too.

I think it’s her way of letting me know she missed me.

After I spend some time petting her and talking to her she is more likely to settle down. Then I can continue with whatever it is I wanted to do -sit on the couch, check email, plan dinner, etc.

It may seem counter-intuitive, but by spending time with your dog as soon as you walk in the door, she will be comfortable letting you have some personal space.

It will build her self-confidence.

2. Abandonment issues

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As sad as this may sound, some dogs suffer from abandonment issues. This can happen for a number of reasons.

Some dogs have been left behind when owners move. Some may have been abandoned when an owner decided a dog was too much work.

In this case, you should be very careful with your dog’s feelings. This type of dog will most certainly have self-esteem issues and will need gentle reassurance.

You may find your dog waiting outside the bathroom for you or needing to lean against your leg. She may be constantly touching you by rubbing against you.

It is important to realize that in this case, your dog needs your reassurance that you will be there.

My dog is a rescue from a shelter. And before I got her someone else adopted her and then brought her back a few weeks later.

I realize that my poor dog probably is most afraid of being left behind or sent back again.

I find it helpful to let my dog know that I’m there. I do this by putting her on her leash, even when we are inside the house.

This helps her feel reassured that she won’t be abandoned.  When she is reassured it helps her to be calm and more likely to not act up.

3. Dogs need a job

Dogs are working animals. They like to keep busy and have a goal to accomplish. If your dog is not giving you personal space, he may need to have a job.

Giving your dog something to do will help redirect their energy. This is a positive way to help your dog focus on something other than yourself.

It will help your dog’s self-confidence too if they have something to do. Chewing a bone or figuring out a puzzle toy are 2 great activities for your dog.

4. Teach a “back” command

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It is possible to teach your dog to “back” away from you. This can be done using treats and positive reinforcement.

Once you teach your dog “back” and they have mastered it, it will be a good tool for you to use.

Dogs need to know who the leader is and will look to the leader for direction. That is you.

This command will help you control your dog when you walk through the door and you need a minute to yourself.

Your dog will love this command because he will have a direction from his leader to follow.


Dogs are truly man’s best friend. They will love us unconditionally and are always there to make us smile.

It is important to remember that dogs have feelings too. It will help us to understand their behavior if we remember that.

When we are gone, they miss us. They may be afraid of being abandoned. They want to know what their purpose is supposed to be.

If we spend a few minutes reassuring them when we return home, they will appreciate it. When we redirect their focus and give them a job to do, they will find their purpose. If we teach them commands, they will be reassured knowing we are in charge.

These suggestions will help you and your dog to have a happy relationship.

Does your dog have issues with giving you personal space? Share your experiences below!

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