A whopping 3,500 dog parents responded to the survey, revealing many fascinating trends. According to Wag!, not only would 80% of dog parents trust their dog’s reaction to a love interest, but, “Taking your pooch out could help you find your fur-ever love—with 68 percent of singles saying they’ve been flirted with while walking their dog.” Moreover, three out of every 10 dog parents have deliberately used their dog to attract a potential love interest, attempts that were 84 percent successful. (1)
Wag! goes on to say that “More than 16 percent of married dog owners said they would choose to celebrate their pup’s birthday over their spouse’s…1 in 5 dog owners have let their dog eat off their plate during a date…1 out of 4 people said they met a love interest at a party thrown for a dog.” (1)
Help Your Partner Like Your Pet Better
Not everyone is quick to dump a date because their dog didn’t click well with them. Just in case you find someone you really like who also doesn’t happen to get along easily with your dog, here is a step-by-step process to help that bond between your dog and love interest blossom before you throw in the relationship towel:
1. Confine your pooch to a separate space before your date arrives, then ask your date to settle in and get comfortable.
New people over at the house can trigger some unwanted behavior from even the sweetest of dogs. Barking, growling, running, jumping, and more are all-natural dog reactions to a new person. In order to help reduce unwanted behavior, put your dog in a separate room until all the excitement of a person entering your home has died down. Ask your guest to sit, get comfortable, and let your dog make the first move.
2. Let your dog greet your date on their own accord.
Whether your dog loves new people or hates them, you should ask your date to wait to speak or touch your dog until your dog instigates it. This doesn’t mean you should allow your dog to bark or jump on your guest, but you should let them make the first approach.
3. Let your date offer your dog some treats.
Your date can offer treats to your pooch by hand or drop them on the floor nearby to help build interest and trust. If both your date and your pooch are up for it, ask your date to make your dog do some tricks to earn their reward.
4. Don’t reward signs of shyness, fear, aggression, or rudeness.
Barking, biting, growling, and running away in fear shouldn’t be rewarded with food, pets, or praise. Signs of aggression shouldn’t be tolerated as they could be potentially dangerous. If a dog is showing signs of timidness, then don’t approach them or force them to be social. Be patient with the relationship and keep repeating the steps!
Not everyone is going to be a dog lover, but some people who don’t like dogs simply haven’t been exposed to them or have possibly been exposed to a dangerous dog. Be patient, don’t force interactions, and remember that no one will ever love your dog quite like you do.