Every dog is different. They have different personalities and characteristics that make them unique and necessarily who they are. As a pet parent, you know precisely how your dog behaves on certain occasions and how he reacts to different situations. However, sometimes dogs start to act differently. Their behaviour seems strange. They might even hide.
While there may be several reasons as to why your dog is hiding and acting strange, we have tried to list the most common situations where dogs tend to behave this way. Let us examine all the different causes and hopefully find a solution.
Your Dog Might Be Sick
The most common cause of acting strange and hiding is sickness. Dogs usually prefer to be alone, out of sight when they feel under the weather. The reason for this is that they are vulnerable when they are physically weak. This is a great danger for them in the wild as predators can easily hunt them down. Therefore, instinctively, dogs feel the need to hide when they are ill to protect themselves even though they are safe at home.
Observe your pup for a while and see if there are any symptoms of illness. For pet parents, it is usually quite easy to understand if their dog is not feeling so well. Lack of appetite, low energy, fever and lethargy are some of the symptoms that you can look out for. If you decide that your dog may be ill, consult your veterinarian immediately.
Your Dog Might Be Traumatized
If you recently adopted your dog and if the dog has a history of abuse, it is quite normal for such a pup to be afraid of many different things. A certain behaviour of a pet parent, gestures and angry tone of voice can easily make a traumatized dog afraid. In such cases, dogs tend to go into hiding. If you can figure out what triggers such a reaction, you can either eliminate the trigger or get professional help.
If your dog doesn’t have a history of abuse, any negative event that happened recently could have traumatized your dog. This traumatic event can simply be a fight with another dog or something that potentially hurt your pup. If your dog’s situation doesn’t seem to get better, we recommend getting professional help.
Loud Noises are Usually Scary
A number of things around the house or in the outside world can be quite scary for dogs. Loud noises are especially very alarming for them as they are sensitive to loud noises as well as bright light. Most dogs are known to fear fireworks since they are very loud and unpredictable. Some dogs may be okay once fireworks are over; however, for some dogs the fear continues for days or even weeks. They might become afraid of any loud noise after such an event.
Thunder is another loud noise that scares dogs. If there is a storm outside and there are thunders and lightning, your dog might be hiding somewhere for protection. In addition to hiding, he might be whining, pacing, or panting as well. If this is the case, let your pup hide and stay near him to make him feel safe and protected.
Your Dog Might Not Like Strangers
Some dogs are naturally very cautious and alert when it comes to strangers, while some have difficulties in socializing with others. Whatever the case may be, if your dog starts to act strange and hide when you have strangers in the house, you can assume that strangers are the trigger.
Instead of forcing your dog to socialize with strangers, let him be for some time. If socializing is generally a big issue for your dog, then it might be a good idea to get professional help.
Your Dog Might Be Stressed
Stress is not something that only affects humans. It also affects animals. There can be a lot of different reasons as to why your dog might be feeling stressed. However, the common cause of stress in dogs is change. “The only constant in life is change,” said Heraclitus.
Even though humans are aware of this fact, dogs may find change to be threatening. They do not understand when things start to shift in their lives. The only solution that they can find is to hide.
Big changes, such as moving to a new house is a common cause of stress. However, small changes can also affect dogs negatively. If you have recently moved furniture around the house or thrown away a favorite toy or bed, your dog might be stressed out because of it. Therefore, it is a good idea to make changes slowly for dogs to adapt to.
Not getting enough exercise, socialization, or attention can also cause stress and anxiety in dogs. Observe your pup, think of all the changes that might have happened recently to find the cause of stress and act accordingly.
Your Dog Might Want to Be Left Alone
Just like humans, dogs sometimes simply want some peace and quiet. If you have been giving a lot of attention to your dog recently, he may want some privacy and alone time for himself. If you have kids or if you had guests with kids, this may have been also a draining experience for your dog, especially if he is not used to it. Give him some space, respect his needs, and he should be fine in a short while.
Conclusion: Why Is My Dog Hiding and Acting Strange?
There can be different reasons as to why your dog is hiding and acting strange. It is essential to observe your dog and think retrospectively to find what may have triggered such a reaction. Your dog may be sick, traumatized by a certain event, afraid of loud noises and strangers, stressed out, or he might want some time alone.
Once you have found the cause, you can either try what we have recommended, or you can consult your veterinarian if the case seems dangerous.
In any case, approach your pooch with a loving and caring attitude, do not force him to do something he does not want to do. Let him know that you are there for him no matter what happens and get professional help if needed.