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  • Writer's pictureMimi Jacobson C.P.D.T


I really need to share this with every dog lover, dog walker, dog trainer, and dog handler out there. We have an epidemic in the dog world right now too, and I would like to call it 'Dog Covid Victim Syndrome'. So what am I talking about? What is DCVS? There are many dogs out there that are just simply SCARED. Terrified to go out or do anything. I have not seen this in almost 18 years in this field, and it breaks my heart. ​

But it does make something very clear to me, that I have been pondering for a while now. We truly are the mirror to our dog’s behavior. We have all feared this virus. But why is it our fault?

Well, we thought because we stayed at home now, getting a dog would be a great idea. In all honesty we never thought the lockdowns would last this long, but after a year or more of this lockdown, who would have thought it would have such lasting effect on our dogs?​ We were afraid of getting too close to others in fear of getting naturally our dogs fear other people.

We were afraid to go out and had to social distance and naturally they are now afraid of going out, all the faces that stare down on them and talk to them, and worst of all...get close to them. ​Where did that mask go?

So, what should we do?​

Let’s start with dealing with our own fears. When we are around the dog, practice some deep breathing and calming our energy. Focus on our approach to others and practice calm energy, and stand tall, oozing confidence. Help our dog cope with the anxiety by not coddling and petting the dog in that scared state of mind, and simply just be there and breathe.

And for goodness sake...don't sound like a dying mouse when you communicate with the dog. It makes you sound weak. A calm, slow and low voice is very helpful to put a scared dog at ease.

Learn to read their body language, so you know what state they are in. Set rules and boundaries so they are given the direction they are starving for, so they more quickly can understand how they fit in this world of ours.

Being the pack leader in your dog’s life is essential, as it removes any responsibility the dog thought it had for your life, the family’s life and the dogs own life. They feel secure and safe, loved, and respected. Now you will mirror that behavior in your dog.

There is no greater feeling than being loved, respected and

followed by your dog.



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