Enlightened by Dogs Podcast

EBD221 Dog Advocacy and Social Pressure – Let’s Do Better

EBD221 Dog Advocacy and Social Pressure - Let's Do Better

Throughout her career, Kathy has been in many different social situations with her dogs. Whether out in public, at the vet, or on a long hike, these social interactions can pose a few problems when people want to say ‘hi’ to your dog or treat your dog in ways you wouldn’t usually.

In these situations, it’s crucial to remain a calm, confident role model, stepping in as your dog’s voice to reassure them and provide them with comfort.

In this episode of Enlightened by Dogs, Kathy shares two uncomfortable situations she and her dogs have found themselves in. She dissects these interactions, what made her and her dogs uncomfortable and provides top tips for dog parents on how to best deal with these kinds of encounters.

Tune in to the episode to hear Kathy’s advice.

To revisit one of Kathy’s latest, very special episodes about Maya, head to EBD219 – Maya, The Gift that Keeps on Giving.

In this episode:

  • How to comfort your dog in challenging situations
  • Why showing people calmly where they stand is key
  • How to be the parent and advocate your dog’s needs


“When dogs are not eager to engage like this, it’s always best to let them make the first approach on their own.”

“If you’re a dog professional and you’re advising dog parents to socialize and desensitize using outdated ideas, I hope that you reconsider.”

“It’s okay to feel social pressure and still be the advocate that your dog needs you to be anyway.”

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3 Responses

  1. I loved this podcast! I wish I had the confidence tongo against those ‘social pressures’ 8 yrs ago when I wanted to do agility with my dog! I guess in the end I advocated for him by quitting, but it was hard to stand up to the experienced dog owners in the club and tell them we weren’t coming back.

  2. Elaine, I had an experience like that as well. I just took my dog and left. And he did nothing wrong. I tripped over a tree root and fell as he was walking ahead of me, and they assumed I wasn’t in control of him. Bunch of snobs anyway so no great loss.

  3. Another great podcast Kathy
    Thank you, it’s always to get a tender like this to keep on track
    Sue and Charlieboy 🐾

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