What's the best way to introduce yourself to a new dog?
As a dog sitter, one of the most important things you will need to do is introduce yourself to the new dogs that come into your care. This process is crucial because it sets the tone for the rest of your time together and helps ensure that the dog is comfortable with you.
Here are some tips to help you successfully introduce yourself to a new dog.
Take it slow
When you first meet a new dog, it’s important to take things slow. Don't rush into petting or playing with the dog right away. Let the dog approach you first and get comfortable with your scent.
Treats are a great way to get a dog’s attention and make them feel more at ease with you. As a dog sitter, it’s always a good idea to bring some treats with you to the meet and greet, such as a ziplock bag of kibble. Offer a treat to the dog slowly and let them come to you to take it.
Keep your body language relaxed
When you approach a new dog, it’s important to keep your body language relaxed and non-threatening. Stand upright, but not too stiff, and avoid leaning over the dog with direct eye contact. Doing this can be intimidating to some dogs.
Avoid patting the dog right away
While you may be tempted to pat the dog right away, it’s important to wait until they are comfortable with you. Let the dog sniff the back of your hand first, and if they relax and wag their tail, slowly reach out to pat their head.
Avoid overwhelming the dog
If the dog seems scared or nervous, it’s important to avoid overwhelming them. Don’t try to force them to interact with you. Instead, take things slow and let the dog set the pace.
Make the introduction positive
As a dog sitter, it’s important to make the introduction as positive as possible. Give the dog plenty of verbal praise and treats. Staying positive and calm lets them know that you are there to take care of them.
Repeat the process
If the first introduction goes well, it’s important to repeat the process several times over the course of your time together. This will help ensure that the dog stays relaxed with you and that you maintain a positive relationship while dog-sitting.
In conclusion, introducing yourself to a new dog is an important part of your job as a dog sitter. By taking things slow, using treats, keeping your body language relaxed, avoiding petting the dog right away, avoiding overwhelming the dog, making the introduction positive, and repeating the process, you can successfully introduce yourself to a new dog. Doing so will help ensure that your time together is comfortable and enjoyable for both of you.