Does your dog follow you everywhere you go? If your pup is always stuck to your side, you have what is commonly called a velcro dog. The name comes from the hook-and-loop fastener used to hold fabric together. These dogs always want to be with their people, and depending on the breed, they can be very protective. Although some people get annoyed with how needy velcro dogs are, this clingy behavior is natural and with some breeds, desirable.
Top 9 velcro dog breeds:
Any dog can display velcro dog behaviors, but there are dog breeds who have a solid reputation for their velcro tendencies. Here are the most affectionate dog breeds:
Affectionate dog behavior explained
Dogs breeds with a velcro personality were developed specifically to be close to their people. Some of these dogs were bred as companion dogs and attentive to people’s feelings; other breeds were created to work side-by-side with humans. For these dogs, clingy behavior is a breed-specific trait and is desirable. This is something to consider before getting a dog. If you want a more independent companion, these dogs are not the breed for you. A true velcro dog is confident and well socialized, but given the option, he’ll always choose to be close to you.
Our dog breeds section gives insight into finding the right dog for your lifestyle.
Velcro dogs and safety hazards
If your dog always wants to be with you, it’s wonderful, but it can also pose a safety issue. If you find yourself tripping over your dog who is literally underfoot, create a training plan to keep both you and your dog safe. Here’s how:
- Teach your dog to go to his bed or another designated area that is out of the way.
- Lure him there with a treat or toy.
- Then, reward your dog with praise and treats for being on his bed or designated spot.
- Repeat these steps until your dog can go to his bed on cue.
The goal is for your dog to see his bed as a rewarding place, so you won’t trip over him while you’re cooking or moving around your house.
The difference between velcro and anxiety behavior:
Velcro dog temperament is not the same as a dog having separation anxiety, insecurity or feeling uncomfortable on his own. Dogs with velcro dog syndrome prefer to spend time with their people, but they are also perfectly capable of being alone. Dogs with anxiety become distressed or uncomfortable when alone. For anxious dogs, connect with your veterinarian to see if there is an underlying medical issue. Work with a dog trainer who utilizes positive reinforcement techniques to help your dog learn new coping skills. Similarly, if your dog suddenly starts sticking to you like velcro and that isn’t his normal temperament, it could be an indication that he’s in pain or has some other underlying health condition.
If you notice a change in your dog’s temperament schedule an appointment with your veterinarian right away to determine if there is a medical cause for the behavior changes.
Autor Sassafras Lowrey, MFA, CPDT-KA, CTDI