Is it Wrong to Treat a Dog like a Baby?

By Josie F. Turner, Journalist specialized in Animal Welfare. Updated: April 23, 2018
Is it Wrong to Treat a Dog like a Baby?

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You always need to accept the full responsibility of meeting the physical, psychological and social needs of any pet before welcoming it into your home. In fact, your pet should always be made to feel like "one of the family".

However, it can be disadvantageous for your dog when you treat it like a human, as this is at odds with its natural instinct and can negatively affect its behavior. This Animal Wised article will address the question "is it wrong to treat a dog like a baby?"

Similarities between dogs and humans

Firstly, it's important to know the similarities between us and our canine friends. These similarities should be acknowledged in the same way as the things that set us apart. Only by doing this will we avoid making the serious mistake of humanizing a dog or treating it like a baby.

Dogs are social animals just like us, meaning they need to live in a group in order to survive and reach a state of full well-being. Their sociability means that they don't tolerate solitude very well, much like us humans.

Another amazing aspect of the sensibility of dogs is that they also respond very positively to music as a result of their sensory acuteness. Something which had already been observed previously, hence the famous expression "music hath charms to soothe a savage beast".

Is it Wrong to Treat a Dog like a Baby? - Similarities between dogs and humans

Differences that must be respected

Just because we share similarities with dogs, it doesn't mean we should treat them as exact equals. By doing so, we will not be respecting their instinctive nature and drives.

Dogs have a great ability to detect stimuli because their senses are much more finely tuned than our own. They are completely instinctive, and it seems very difficult for humans to understand this.

It is a serious error to project into dogs emotions that are not in their nature, such as revenge. No dog disobeys or causes a small crisis at home due to it seeking vengeance. By simply respecting the similarities and differences between dogs and humans, you will be able to create a relationship which is beneficial and productive for both parties.

Is it Wrong to Treat a Dog like a Baby? - Differences that must be respected

Treating a dog like a baby is a very serious mistake

Even if your pet is still a puppy, you need to be very careful not to treat it like a baby. For example, when you repeatedly invite a puppy to climb all over you (as lovely as this might be at the time) you must consider if you'll want it to do so when it is an adult. You must understand that dogs require order and a steady environment.

The absence of limits and a lack of discipline is a direct cause of dogs suffering from behavioral disorders, and even acting aggressively. Complications deriving from a lack of discipline can be very serious.

Very differently to babies, dogs need an active routine which must include exercise, walks, obedience training and socialization. You need to understand that dogs have their own nature which includes sniffing urine, drooling and acting in ways which aren't very conventional for us humans. It's completely possible to understand that dogs are not human beings and still give them love and care. Put simply, you should treat your dog differently to how you would treat a baby.

Is it Wrong to Treat a Dog like a Baby? - Treating a dog like a baby is a very serious mistake

Tips to enjoy a happy and well-balanced dog

Avoid the main errors of humanization and show your dog the right attitude to feel happy in the household:

  • Don't pick your dog up; this can cause a great feeling of insecurity.
  • The love that you give your dog should always have limits and discipline.
  • Your dog's physical requirements are not the same as your own. As the owner you should make sure its needs are met, including giving it daily physical exercise.
Is it Wrong to Treat a Dog like a Baby? - Tips to enjoy a happy and well-balanced dog

If you want to read similar articles to Is it Wrong to Treat a Dog like a Baby?, we recommend you visit our Facts about the animal kingdom category.

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