In detail

Why don't dogs like postmen?

As soon as your four-legged friend hears the postman coming, is he playing crazy? You are not alone in this. "Why do dogs not like postmen?" Asked many dog ​​owners. Find answers to these questions and how you can teach your overzealous guard with the cold snout to accept the "stranger" here. This bulldog puppy still has to practice keeping watch: While waiting for the postman, the little dog fell asleep in the mailbox - Shutterstock / WilleeCole Photography

There are several reasons that come together when dogs don't like postmen. Strictly speaking, the four-legged friends have nothing personally against the postman - their reaction is based on a misunderstanding. Since postmen come by every day but are treated differently than guests, dogs consider them intruders.

Dogs don't like when postmen enter their territory

Especially dogs with a strong guard and protection instinct see it as their duty to drive the postman away. After all, these strangers invade their territory every day without being asked. Dogs do not understand what these supposed intruders do. They only perceive that these strangers are different from visiting.

Guests usually come into the house, are warmly welcomed by the caregiver's caregivers and are obviously welcome. Postmen or pizza suppliers, on the other hand, stop at the front door, do business, and leave. The four-legged friend prefers to beware of these people.

Some dogs are afraid of the postman

In addition, dogs are often afraid of the postman. Although they had successfully driven the intruder off by barking the day before, he is coming back. This irritates and unsettles the animals. In addition, the parcels and letters that the postman brings bring a strange smell to the dog, which can increase his insecurity. He cannot classify the situation correctly, he is not comfortable with it. As a precaution, he reacts aggressively to keep the apparent danger away.

Can dogs smell the postman's fear?

Conversely, many postmen are afraid of dogs. As a result, they emit a certain smell that dogs can perceive via pheromones (fragrances). The postman's fear can spread to anxious or nervous four-legged friends. Furthermore, the postman may show behavior in his fear that provokes the dog or awakens his hunting instinct. For example, if the postman looks the animal in the eye or tries to run away from the dog as quickly as possible.

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Misconduct is determined by positive reinforcement

Your dog's aggressive behavior towards couriers and Co. is not to be trifled with. If it is not interrupted as early as possible, it can seize up and get worse. This is due to the phenomenon of positive reinforcement. It not only helps in dog training to impress desired behavior on the dog. It can also make dangerous behavior a habit. Your dog's goal is to drive the postman away by barking. That seems to be working because the postman is leaving. The animal does not know that the intruder has left anyway.

Now the "enemy" comes back the next day and the dog is amazed. As a precaution he barks a bit louder and - lo and behold - the postman disappears, the dog has reached its destination. So his aggressive behavior is rewarded. Since the unwanted stranger keeps coming back, the animal thinks it has to become clearer and clearer. At worst, one day he starts biting the postman to drive him away.

How dogs and postmen can become friends

The sooner you break this spiral, the better. Once aggressive behavior has rocked up enough to become dangerous, only problem dog therapy can help. It is easiest to teach your dog from the start that the postman is welcome. Introduce them to each other when the postman brings you your letters and packages. To do this, you can agree with your postman to have a treat or toy for the dog outside, which the postman will bring and give to your four-legged friend. In this way, your dog links the postman to something pleasant and learns that it is worthwhile to receive them in a friendly manner.

You can also teach your dog the command "Off to the basket". Over time, he also learns to wait quietly in his seat when the doorbell rings. If your dog is afraid of the postman and therefore barking at him regularly, conditioned relaxation also helps. You can also generally strengthen your dog's self-confidence by socializing it with other dogs and strangers in the dog school. Then he reacts more calmly to the postman.