Why am I so attached to my dog? (14 signs)

In this article, we will answer the following question: Why am I so attached to my dog? We will also present to you 14 signs that you may have an unhealthy attachment to your pet, and give you the reasons behind that.

Why am I so attached to my dog?

Loving our pets to the point of considering them part of our family, taking care of them and seeking their well-being is undoubtedly a good and normal thing. But some people can cross this threshold, turning these beings into substitutes for personal relationships and humanizing them to the extreme. Is it difficult for you to detach yourself from your pet?

People are not only attached to their dogs, but are also attached to their cats.

Let’s agree that paying close attention to the animals that share your home is not a bad thing; Quite the contrary and very welcoming is that you take care of them properly.

The problem arises when your dog, your cat or the little animal you have chosen to have becomes the centre of your life: the only one who loves you understands you and accepts you as you are.

The fact that you cannot detach yourself from your pet can be interpreted, then, as a compensatory mechanism – either psychological or emotional- that most of the time is generated unconsciously and that is reinforced as time passes, reaching to hinder relationships with friends and family.

If you cannot detach yourself from your pet, there is something that is not working well in the way you are relating to it and that you must solve both for your good and for that non-human being that keeps you company.

Not just children, but even some adults get too attached to their stuffed animals. They don’t really get as to why they feel this way.

Some reasons why you are too attached to your dog

Among the reasons why a person has an excessive attachment to their dog, we can point out several difficulties to interrelate and communicate with their peers. For example:

  • Shyness
  • Complexes
  • Unsafety

Furthermore, they are beings who, among other things:

  • They need to be accepted
  • They suffered a disappointment
  • They feel lonely.

It is also common to find, among those who cannot detach themselves from their companion animals, people who did not have children or who suffered a significant loss at the emotional level (family, friends, partner).

14 Signs you are attached to your dog

Most of us feel a great bond with our pets because they are the ideal companions that will never leave us. But there are some people who love their dogs too much, those furry balls full of love that simply take care of brightening our days.

It is amazing that they can feel each of our emotions and help us be happy. Here are the 14 signs that you have a disordered attachment to your dog.

1. You have cancelled several plans due to your dog – Social interaction sounds somehow exciting, but you also have the dog that fills you with love and that needs you to be by its side. You will spend more time with your dog than with other people.

2. You show its photos as if they were a child’s – When someone starts showing you a video of how their two-year-old started walking, you immediately take out your phone to show how totally adorable your dog looks by doing tricks while going for the ball or in the cute selfie session that you both shared. 

Obviously you feel like everyone needs to see it, including those mothers who want to show off their little babies. After all, your dog is like a cute baby to you.

3. You worry too much when you’re out of town – It is essential for you to get a babysitter or a hotel for dogs, that is the only way you could go on a trip. You know that this way you can make video calls and make sure it’s okay while you’re away.

But of course, when the call automatically ends you feel like your heart is breaking into a thousand pieces and you definitely end up in a sea of tears.

4. You swear they have opinions too – Sometimes when they are watching television and a scene appears where the employee suggests a fish instead of a dog – since it is almost the same thing – your dog barks too loudly and that is why you think he has his own opinion about this world.

5. Your dog goes to the spa more than you – It may seem ridiculous, but your dog needs a good bath, a haircut, ear cleaning and a nail cut. He definitely deserves it, even if it’s really expensive.

6. You have kicked some guys out of your bed just because it is the place where your dog sleeps –“Uum, no… there is no place for you here. He sleeps next to me, so we don’t have room to include someone else.”

7. You feel jealous if your dog pays more attention to other people – You immediately think: how dare you go with a stranger? I have fed him every day of his life! It really feels like a betrayal to you that someone else dares to pet it.

8. Your vet’s name is first on your agenda  – You go crazy if something happens to your dog and you can’t call him fast. Any sign that shows something wrong is a sign that you have to call the vet. You really panic when he doesn’t answer your calls, he doesn’t understand that your dog can die because he swallowed a piece of shoe!

9. You would never consider calling it “our dog” if you are in a relationship. – There is no “our dog” in this relationship. If the relationship ends there will be no visitation rights. It’s your dog – There is nothing more to say about it.

10. You have better conversations with your dog than with other people – He has the cognitive ability to understand everything you are rambling about. He may not speak, but he has helped you solve a few epiphanies about your career, your future, or life with a simple bark. It is a connection that no one can understand.

11. You refuse to apologize for your dog’s misbehaviour – The barking is not annoying, it does it because it is just how she expresses itself. Your dog’s insane compulsion to finish off any pair of socks is not a bad habit, it’s just very peculiar. It is not horrible while rolling on the grass, it does it because it feels really good!

12. You could take it everywhere if you could – It is a pity that not all dogs can enter different places. It would be much easier to go to breakfast if he could enter a restaurant. You still refuse to buy a dog stroller, but could you … we understand you will not buy one, we really understand.

13. The other dogs are the ones that start the problems, it is never yours – There is no such thing as your dog bullying others, he could never be a bully. It only barks because the other barked first. He is trying to be friendly.

14. You consider your dog your best friend – It has been there for you through thick and thin. Friends can come and go, but their love is truly unconditional. You know that when you get home you will be greeted with a wagging tail and a big lick that you call a kiss. He is simply the best, that is why he deserves everything. You will never find a person who is as good as a dog.

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FAQ on Why am I so attached to my dog

Why do we get so attached to dogs?

We get attached to dogs because we take care of them and we receive love and companionship from their side. It is perfectly normal to get attached to your dog.

Can dogs get attached to each other?

Yes, some dogs can get attached to each other, they can even form true friendships with other dogs – especially if they live in the same household. Just like us humans. 

Do dogs know they are loved?

Yes, dogs know they are loved, appreciated and cared for. Many dogs and their humans have a very special connection!

How do dogs get attached to their owner?

Dogs get attached to their owner by spending time together, playing, training, taking walks and just following them around. 

Conclusions

In this article, we answered the following question: Why am I so attached to my dog? We also presented to you 14 signs that you may have an unhealthy attachment to your pet and gave you the reasons behind it.

The fact that you cannot detach yourself from your pet can be interpreted, then, as a compensatory mechanism – either psychological or emotional- that most of the time is generated unconsciously and that is reinforced as time passes, reaching to hinder relationships with friends and family.

If you cannot detach yourself from your pet, there is something that is not working well in the way you are relating to it and that you must solve both for your good and for that non-human being that keeps you company.

If you have any questions, comments or recommendations, please let us know!

Further reading

One Hundred Ways for a Dog to Train Its Human, by Simon Whaley 

Things My Dog Has Taught Me: About being a better human, by Jonathan Wittenberg 

The Goodness of Dogs: The Human’s Guide to Choosing, Buying, Training, Feeding, Living With and Caring For Your Dog, by India Knight

How to Speak Dog: Mastering the Art of Dog-human Communication, by Stanley Coren  

The Human Half of Dog Training: Collaborating with Clients to Get Results, by Risë Vanfleet 

What we recommend for Relationship & LGBTQ issues

Relationship counselling

  • If you are having relationship issues or maybe you are in an abusive relationship then relationship counselling could be your first point of call. Relationship counselling could be undertaken by just you, it does not require more than one person.

LGBTQ issues

If you are dealing with LGBTQ issues then LGBTQ counselling may be a great option for you. Maybe you are confused as to your role and identity or simply need someone to speak to. LGBTQ counsellors are specially trained to assist you in this regard.

References

Psychologytoday.com – How Emotionally Attached Are You to Your Pet?

Theveterinaryexpert.com – Are we too attached to our pets?

Petsworld.in -7 Reasons Why You Are Emotionally Attached To Your Dog

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