How to build confidence in an insecure dog?


It probably lacks confidence if your dog covers, pees submissively, or hides between your legs when something worries it.  It could use some boosting—scolding the dog for urinating, shooing the dog away if it hides between your legs, or forcing the dog into uncomfortable situations are not helpful ways to assist the dog. You can train and nurture dogs using this “holistic” method. This method covers “How to build confidence in an insecure dog.”

 Harsh tactics of behavioral inhibition are ineffective if there is no underlying mention of emotions, and extreme measures of behavior suppression are useless.  

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These pets require inside-out assistance. In other words, you need to increase their self-assurance so they can stop showing signs of dread in public. With these suggestions, your dog will feel more at ease, and the world will appear less frightening.

The underlying feeling will not change if you fear spiders, scream when you see one, and then get slapped in the face for it. You may now have two fears: the fear of spiders and getting hit on top of that!

Some dogs are incredibly cautious and insecure, yet many are gregarious and energetic. Dogs, like people, can struggle with confidence. These dogs require tender, encouraging feedback to boost their self-esteem. Gaining a dog’s confidence will improve its overall wellness and quality of life.

You may increase your dog’s self-assurance in various ways to help him feel more secure. Let’s start with the fundamentals of why your dog can lack confidence, then take a look at some workouts for boosting self-assurance and positive reinforcement training methods you can employ to assist your best friend.

Fundamental Dog training to Build Confidence in an Insecure Dog:

To teach your dog the fundamentals of obedience, it’s usually a good idea to start with some dog training.

Take some snacks with you every time you go for a stroll to keep your dog interested. Work on boosting your friend’s confidence while employing some simple commands. He’ll feel more confident and less timid as he completes what you ask.

It’s crucial to keep in mind that patience is essential while training scared canines to gain confidence. There is no need to rush. Observe your dog’s own pace. It won’t happen overnight. So be realistic about your expectations.

Teaching your dog, the “look at me” cue, which may be used in conjunction with the sit and stay commands, is brilliant. It will assist in keeping your dog’s focus on you if a frightening someone or object approaches.

Clicker training is a terrific approach to getting your dog’s attention. Use one of those hand-held clickers to produce a noise at this point to attract the dog’s attention right away. You can then give the dog the sit and stay command and praise when the dog looks at you to let the dog know the dog did an excellent job.

When your dog approaches to sniff your open palm, show it to him, click, and give him plenty of praise along with a treat. Once acclimated to it, click and say something like “touch” while he touches your palm to “label” the behavior.

“Touch” and ominous circumstances:

Once you’ve had a few practice sessions, you can ask him to “touch,” When he does, make sure to compliment him again. Once he masters this action, you may start associating it with frightening objects that make your dog fearful. You can successfully transform that nervous, emotional response over time into a beneficial experience.

Why is my dog scared of everything?

 You might have a fearful dog for a variety of reasons. It’s likely that the dog is genetically predisposed to being cautious or has already had a negative experience.

However, your dog may lack confidence due to poor socialization as a puppy. Puppies typically start socializing between the ages of 3 and 14 weeks. They will gain confidence if exposed to new settings and experiences without any terrifying events occurring.

On the other hand, if your dog learns that the world is dangerous and unsettling, he is more likely to grow up to be a nervous and timid dog.

Take an Inventory of What Exactly Your Dog is Afraid Of:

 I learned from my work at an animal shelter that no two terrified dogs are the same.

Some dogs appear to be curiously terrified of all people, while others break down at the sight of a select few people. A dog may occasionally be afraid of stairs or slick surfaces, but other times they may perceive the entire world as a haunted house.

Finding out what worries your dog is the first step in helping it acquire confidence. I strongly advise talking to your veterinarian about behavior medicine if your dog appears to be genuinely afraid of the wind and her own shadow. Helping pets who are constantly terrified is too challenging.

 Dog Confidence Building Exercises:

 Particular activities and training methods can help your dog become safer and more confident, learning to trust the world more. Unwanted behavior should never be controlled using severe training techniques or aversion-based training equipment like prongs, choke collars or shocks. The softer specimens may be intimidated even by a loud voice.

The underlying fear is frequently at play when your dog exhibits violent behavior.

See Also : 7 Low-Maintenance Dog Breeds.


Athletic challenges, when appropriately introduced, can boost your dog’s confidence. Agility is a sport that includes jumping over barriers, running through tunnels, climbing A-frames, and walking on objects with strange footing and shaky surfaces.

A dog’s obstacle course initially inspired it. The dog enjoys overcoming difficulties and must constantly pay attention to changing his speed and balance.

Clicking exercises:

Your dog’s confidence can be increased through clicker training. shapes like “free shaping” and “generic shaping.” Train your dog to think creatively, which will figuratively “open up” your dog.

 Soon, your dog will be able to attempt to offer behaviors. He will pick up new ways to communicate in his environment. Free shaping is also advantageous due to the dog’s inability to make mistakes.

Playing the game “101 things to do with a box.” The best part is that if your dog is frightened of strangers, you can teach it to target strangers’ hands and how to engage with them positively by targeting them.

Study to Earn:

This technique also called “say please,” might help uneasy dogs establish a habit. Some dogs appreciate having a schedule for the day. If your dog is a working dog breed, he may want structure and regularity. By teaching him to sit before meals, opening doors, and putting him on a leash, you may prepare him for better impulse control.

Trick Instruction:

Get the beer from the refrigerator now. Get the mail now! Activate the door! Play the piano now. Trick training is enjoyable and can significantly enhance your dog’s confidence because it allows them to engage with the outside world and complete tasks.

He might also like performing in front of them if you include an audience who will compliment and reward him for the display!

Simple Obedience:

It’s true—basic obedience can boost your dog’s confidence. How? By teaching your dog to sit, you are giving him something else to consider and demonstrating that he does not have to choose how to behave on his own. Your dog will also be thrilled due to the praise and prizes because he will feel like he accomplished something correctly.

Tips for interacting with people:

 Keep in mind that you are your pet’s best spokesperson.

If a stranger approaches your dog and you don’t think they’re ready to meet, it’s always acceptable to say no. To avoid a confrontation, you can move in between the other person and your dog. It offers you the opportunity to explain why you require more room politely.

Here are some other suggestions for reducing your dog’s fear of people:

Give your dog some time to adjust people to build confidence in an insecure dog.

  • Tell people not to approach your dog, and then let them decide whether they want to. A dog is more likely to come to people securely if it adjusts independently.
  • At first, avoid making direct eye contact. 
  • A dog may feel threatened or intimidated by direct eye contact. Observe the ground or the side.
  • Get close to dogs at their level. Squat or take a seat on the floor. 
  • Don’t stand too close to a dog.
  • Reduce the distance for a safe interaction by throwing rewards. Toss one treats at a time from a crouching stance. It enables your dog to approach at its own pace while also receiving a prize. Wait till they take a reward from your hand before interacting with them.
  • Pet them on their chest or under their chin. Try to refrain from touching their heads; most dogs dislike it!
  • Before taking your dog to public places like the dog park, a friend’s house, or a restaurant or brewery that welcomes dogs, develop trust with them.
  • Your dog will regress if you subject them to a stressful scenario. Go slowly and give the dog time to develop the dog’s trust and confidence.


Like you wouldn’t force a human encounter, if your dog is timid or afraid of other dogs, don’t push it.

On walks, for example, interactions with other dogs are sometimes unavoidable. You can give yourself some room by crossing the roadway to the other side or leaving the route.

Don’t get discouraged if your dog displays aggressive behavior against other dogs, such as growling, lunging, or barking.

 Dogs and their owners can learn new skills to boost their confidence while using a leash in classes like Reactive Rovers at the Animal Humane Society. This two-part training session will teach you practical training advice before putting it into practice.

Remember that the key is to move slowly and work with your dog as they grow self-assurance. Success is attainable.