What do dogs fear the most in life? Of course, it varies from dog to dog, but dog phobias do exist!
You may have noticed your dog getting a little shaky when you take him to see the vet. You may have found your dog hiding in a narrow, dark place when there are fireworks outside! They may appear brave from their loud barking and howling sound, but your dog is probably barking in fear!
Types of Dog Phobia
We have listed the most common dog phobias and dog fears!
#10 Fear of veterinarians
This is a pretty common fear for dogs.
Let’s face it, bad things happen at the vet! You may take your poor dog to the vet because of some sickness or injury or for a checkup or a vaccination! Dogs are smart, and all it takes is one visit for them to start associating with the vet.
The strange smell of antiseptics and bleach may be an additional fear factor. Also, the unfamiliar environment with different people handling your dog may sound quite intimidating to your pooch.
But it’s probably the sting of the syringe when they receive their immunization which is the scariest moment for dogs. Not to mention, they may fear an unfamiliar person sticking a thermometer in their rear end!
#9 Fear of objects
Some dogs may fear noisy and strange smelling objects.
Vacuums, blowers, lawn mowers, and similar noisy manmade machines send many dogs off running.
A dog’s hearing power is far more acute than that of humans. What sounds like a slight rumble to us is a crashing noise for them.
Some dogs will become aggressive, while others will simply curl in their tails and leave. Either way, fear is the key factor here.
Some dogs fear strange or strong-smelling objects, such as candles and liniment bottles, among others.
#8 Fear of strangers
Just like us, dogs are far more comfortable with the familiar!
Dogs that are not used to the company of many people may have this type of phobia and fear strangers.
Dogs that fear unfamiliar people are probably used to being alone with their humans or have not been properly socialized.
This fear is also prevalent in dogs that may have had a bad past. For these dogs, human beings are unpredictable, and therefore fearful!
Only love and gentle encouragement can help overcome this.
#7 Fear of men
The fear of men is not common in well-balanced, well-loved dogs, but sadly, it is quite prevalent in formerly abused dogs.
Dogs that have this fear should be slowly introduced to men. This should be done carefully since scared dogs have a tendency to be aggressive when they perceive they are being provoked.
#6 Fear of cars
While most dogs are always up for a car ride, some others fear to ride in cars or being anywhere near them.
Some rescued dogs may have acquired the fear from an accidental hit by a car. Some dogs are fearful of cars either because of a lack of exposure or getting car sick.
It is possible to overcome this fear using treats and praise while luring them in or near cars. Also, make sure your dog’s first car ride brings them lots of fun!
#5 Fear of stairs
Some dogs are afraid of stairs.
There could be a number of reasons for this. Your dog may have had a bad experience, for example, falling off stairs. Perhaps your dog has never been exposed to stairs before. Unfamiliar things are scary for some dogs. It could be a physical problem. Reluctance to go up or down stairs could indicate that it is painful for your pooch to do so.
To overcome this fear, you can try rewarding your dog with a treat every time they take a step or put a treat on each step, so that your dog can pick them up as they take every step!
#4 Fear of being left alone
Experts say that a dog’s biggest fear is the fear of being left alone. They fear that you will leave them and never return. Most dogs thrive in the company of their humans. Laidback, well-balanced dogs cope when left alone, but many dogs suffer from separation anxiety- the fear of being left alone.
Such dogs tend to become destructive. They may also bark excessively when left alone.
#3 Fear of water
It is a complete misconception that all dogs love water! Some dogs absolutely hate it, and many are so afraid that they won’t go anywhere near it!
A dog that is afraid of water may have had a bad experience when they were younger or may simply not know what it is.
Gentle encouragement is required to overcome this dog phobia!
#2 Fear of rain and thunderstorms
The sound of raindrops hitting the ground is strange and scary for some dogs and the accumulative noise of raindrops falling around a dog is even worse.
If dogs find the sound of the rain frightening, thunder is absolutely terrifying! Astraphobia is very common in dogs, though the degree may vary from one dog to another. A dog’s hearing power is so acute that the loud strikes and crashes can be almost deafening.
Some dogs are only mildly afraid, while others shiver and tremble in absolute fear.
#1 Fear of fireworks
The fear of fireworks tops the list – this is probably the most prevalent fear in dogs!
The loud and unpredictable noises that fireworks make leave most dogs trembling in fear.
During fireworks, make sure that you keep your dogs in a room where they will feel safe. Dogs with a severe firework phobia may need anti-anxiety medications or a sedative.