One of the best things about owning a dog is how excited they are to see you after you have been away. No matter how bad your day was, returning home to a dog showering you with love and affection makes everything better.
But what if you come home and your dog is indifferent? Why would your dog not be excited to see you when you get home?
There are several reasons your dog may not be excited to see you. Dogs are highly sensitive, and their lack of excitement could be a sign of underlying problems. Your dog could be sick, hurt, depressed, scared, or stressed.
This post will take a closer look at the potential reasons behind your dog’s lack of excitement when they see you after a while. Let’s get started.
Possible Reasons Your Dog Doesn’t Greet You With Excitement Anymore
Dogs are usually loving and excited to see their humans and especially if you have been apart for some time. If you notice your dog’s enthusiasm towards you declining, it could point to an underlying problem.
Dogs are likely to be indifferent towards their owners for the following reasons:
- Your dog may be sick or injured.
- Your dog may be depressed.
- Your dog may be stressed or anxious.
- It may be a reaction to your behavior.
- Your dog may be scared or intimidated by you.
1. Your Dog May Be Sick or Injured
If your dog is usually happy to see you, whether it’s first thing in the morning when they wake up or when you arrive home after a day’s work, and you notice that excitement has suddenly stopped, the first thing to consider is if they are injured or unwell.
Pay attention to any other changes of behavior in your dog, such as they have lost their appetite, have mobility issues, have lethargy, or have been suffering from vomiting or diarrhea.
If you notice any of these symptoms take your dog to the vet so that they can be treated appropriately.
If you are in financial difficulty and are worried about vet bills, this website has some helpful resources for charities to help you pay your bills.
(If you don’t live in the US, you can use Google to find similar help in your country).
2. Your Dog May Be Depressed
Another thing that could suddenly affect your dog’s behavior and excitement towards you is depression. Dogs are sensitive and emotional and can easily become depressed if distressed.
The death of a family member or a beloved family pet can take a toll on your dog’s mental health. They could also be depressed because a loved one has moved away or there is a new addition to the family resulting in less attention on them.
In this situation, all you can do is give your dog extra love and attention. Spend more time doing things they like to do, and they should slowly start getting back to themselves within a few weeks.
If their depression does not lift after a few weeks, it is worth taking them to the vet, or this video also has some useful advice:
3. Your Dog May Be Stressed or Anxious
Dogs also withdraw and become distant when they feel stressed or anxious. The addition of a new family member, whether a newborn baby or a new family pet, can leave your canine companion stressed out and unhappy.
Your dog might also experience anxiety due to environmental changes like moving to a new house, a different feeding or walking routine, or a changed work schedule (more hours at work).
Allow your dog time to adjust and limit your changes to their routine and environment. You should also spend more time with your four-legged family friend to make them feel loved and safe.
4. It May Be a Reaction to Your Behavior
Even when you are not formally or intentionally training your dog, you can encourage certain behaviors without realizing it.
It might be that when you come home sometimes you are stressed or grumpy and your dog has picked up on this and learned to be detached when you walk through the door.
5. Your Dog May Be Scared or Intimidated by You
As much as you might hate to admit it, your dog might not be excited to see you because they are scared or intimidated by you.
Maybe you take sole responsibility for disciplining him or discipline him more than the others in your family. Or perhaps lately, you’ve been yelling at him.
Sometimes dog owners do this without noticing, but it is vital to pay attention to our behavior and monitor its influence on our dogs. Dogs are pretty smart and can understand instructions without the need to yell.
Shouting will only strain your relationship with your canine companion, denying you the love and affection that comes with a strong bond.
Alter Your Behavior To Encourage Your Dog To Be Excited
Luckily, getting your dog excited to see you is relatively easy. If you’ve ruled out your dog being hurt, sick, depressed, stressed, or anxious, you need to make minor tweaks to your behavior and change how you interact with your dog.
Start by considering the energy you give your dog. Are you happy and affectionate around them? If you are aloof and distracted, your dog will likely respond in the same way.
Focus on positive reinforcement like rewarding the behavior you like with treats and toys rather than using negative actions like yelling or using a negative tone. If your dog is scared of you, it might take a bit of time for them to trust you again and feel comfortable around you.
Spend time doing the things your dog likes and build a routine that he will be excited about. For example, if your dog loves going on walks, take them for a walk as soon as you get home. They will associate you coming home with a fun activity that they are excited about.
Some Dogs Show Affection in Different Ways
Not all dogs are the same, and if your dog has never seemed excited to see you, it does not mean they don’t love you. If they aren’t afraid of you or exhibiting any of the behaviors listed above, it could be that they show their affection in other ways.
Some dogs show affection by making eye contact, bringing you their favorite toy, leaning or rubbing against you, or by carrying around a pair of your shoes or clothing.
Final Thoughts On Your Dog’s Lack of Excitement When You Return Home
Dogs are, by nature, loving and affectionate and are usually excited to see their owners. If your dog isn’t excited to see you, it could point to an underlying problem like your dog being sick, hurt, depressed, or even being afraid of you.
If you think there might be something medically wrong with them, take them to the vet. Otherwise spend more time bonding with your dog and making sure they have a happy and fulfilling life.