It was a rough day for you, and you had lost your temper and hit your dog because of the mess that he had created in the house. You deeply regret your act thereafter and wonder if your dog will ever forgive you for hurting him?
Could that make him defensive and negative towards you?
Let’s find out from this post.
Do Dogs Ever Forgive Their Owners?
The mental ability of dogs is similar to that of a toddler, so they do NOT experience complex emotional states, such as guilt and forgiveness.
With that being said, you will wonder why when you scold your dog, he will try to hide from you the next time a similar situation happens?
This is because he had associated a certain happening with an unpleasant experience and that event would be in his memory.
So, when that trigger happens, he will naturally try to avoid that unpleasant experience.
In other words, if you scold or punish your dog for a certain accident, you will find that he will try to stay away from you in fear of getting punished again when the same accident occurs again.
As long as that accident doesn’t happen again, your dog will be in his usual self and love you as usual.
Hence, your dog won’t hate you if you discipline him. He will only associate that with either fear (punishment) or happiness (positive reinforcement).
There’s no hatred, so you don’t need to worry about your dog forgiving you.
Do Dogs Have Feelings?
Dogs possess many of the same emotions as humans, including love, loyalty, fear, anxiety, sadness and pain which is why they’re good companions for humans.
They, however, do not experience complex emotions such as resentment, hatred, remorse, or forgiveness.
With that being said, dogs can’t feel hurt in a “direct” manner, but fear or anger can be instilled in them, particularly when they are repeatedly abused.
Random yelling for no particular reason and without any connection to specific behavior can result in a dog that is overly anxious, nervous, or hostile.
Persistent yelling at your dog about an accident can also make him associate that event with fear and anxiety.
Can Dogs Remember Being Hurt by You?
In short, yes. They can remember hurts of some sort. They in fact associate that uncomfortable experience or happening with the pain they felt.
If you were to physically and emotionally hurt a dog, it would be quite common for them to associate the pain with you and that installs fear in them when they see you.
It’s for this reason that you should never hurt your dog. They will associate you with the harm they have suffered if you do that.
You should pay special attention to this when you are training your dog. Remain calm and do not lose your temper when your dog makes a mistake.
How Do You Get Your Dog to Stop Hating You?
Dogs do not harbor hatred for humans. They will only be afraid of their owners if they have been treated badly.
It may simply be that your dog is afraid of you if you recently acted angry toward him.
A dog showing fear may curl up, retract his ears, tuck his tail, lick his lips, or tremble in fear. Be on the lookout for these signs to determine if your dog is scared of you.
It’s your job to make your dog feel safe and secure by being a good owner. Make your dog feel that you are the one that is providing him with his basic needs (food and shelter) and that you care for him.
To accomplish this, you are going to make him acknowledge you as his Alpha, the one to whom he must be submissive, and thereby teach him to obey.
Start by making sure you treat him well and take care of all his daily needs, such as food, play and sleep. Give him lots of attention and love and be involved in his daily activities.
If your dog has an accident, don’t yell or scream at him for it. Instead, use a calm voice to correct his undesirable behavior immediately. This will keep him from getting stressed and avoid developing fear of you.
Always praise him when he follows your commands such as “sit”, “down”, “stay”, “wait”, “come” and “drop it” faithfully. Make use of treats to motivate him to obey you.
Your training should be consistent and firm, but not harsh. Make your dog feel that the training process is rewarding, and he will keep going.