Ensure that the household is offering a pleasant and secure environment. It's most likely impossible to find a happy, well-adjusted dog in a house that is chaotic and loud. Some elements that can make a Poodle insecure include: foot traffic near his food and/or resting spot, yelling, loud TV's or music blaring and not having a comfortable area with a bed and toys to retreat to if things are overwhelming.
Evaluate how much time you actually spend interacting with your Poodle. This breed bonds quickly with his owners and is not typically a dog that is happy just 'being'. If a Poodle is essentially ignored due to owners being busy, this feeling can build up until it really affects the dog's behavior.
Setting aside time for two daily walks plus even just 10 minutes twice per day for one-on-one interaction such as playing fetch can make a dog feel satisfied with his 'social life' and be more at peace when he is left to his own devices. Even just speaking out loud to your Poodle can make a big difference.
If a Poodle is Clingy with Only One Owner
Problems can arise if a Poodle tends to cling to just one particular person, having an overly close bond but is then distant with others in the house. This is not that uncommon and this sort of behavior usually manifests if that one person is the main caregiver. This breed can make quick attachments and then cling to the person who they first established a relationship with.
In cases like this, you will want to start to include other family members in the daily activities related to the Poodle, even if the dog ignores the others at first. Humans should take turns feeding a Poodle and this should be done in a way that teaches hierarchy. For anyone who does this task, the dog should be given the 'Sit' command before the dish is placed down. When a dog truly learns that his meals depend on all people in the house, he will be often begin to see them in a different light, having a more balanced bonding, not clinging to just one person.
Taking the Poodle for a walk, brushing him, giving a bath and giving treats are also tasks that everyone should share. There are many instances of a Poodle being exceedingly clingy with one owner but that same dog ends up being super close and loyal to the other once care tasks are shared.
Sudden, Intense Clingy Behavior
There are several issues that can cause a Poodle to suddenly act extremely clingy.
Having been startled- If a dog has had a scare or has otherwise been emotionally jarred, he will often then stay very close to his owner, cling to their side and may act scared long after the event is over. What scares a dog into acting this way can vary, though with many dogs this will be either a very loud noise (including thunderstorms) or an encounter with an aggressive dog.
Most Poodles will cling for a while; however will gradually return to normal behavior anywhere from minutes to several hours.
- If a Poodle is consistently bothered, this may cause him to be clingy whenever he is free from that situation. Common cases include a young child that may be handling the Poodle incorrectly (pulling his tail
, picking him up improperly, swinging the dog, etc.) or another pet in the house that is harassing the Poodle.
If this appears to possibly be the case, steps should be taken to stop this sort of treatment. Children must be taught proper care techniques and if another pet is bothering a Poodle, intervention will be needed including possible separation until they can learn to get along.
- When a dog is not feeling well, he often does one of two things: He may become very clingy, always wanting to stay by his owner's side and not be alone or he may retreat. If a Poodle that is normally very self-sufficient and happy is suddenly overly clingy, a health issue should always be considered.
Developing Issues of Clinginess with Senior Dogs
Older, senior Poodles may start to become clingier as age-related issues begin to develop. This includes health issues
and also includes both decreased hearing and vision. A Poodle may be feeling vulnerable and depend on his owners more as he grows older. With both hearing and vision, simple things such as approaching from the side and flickering lights before entering a room can help.
Senior dogs are also very set in their ways and any changes to the environment can cause a state of unrest; a Poodle may react to new people, a new pet or even a change in furniture placement by acting clingy.
If at all possible, limit changes in the household. You will want to reassess an older Poodle's sleeping area, toy collection and diet to make age-appropriate modifications.
Never assume that any notable changes in behavior are normal and simply a part of 'old age'. Sudden mood swings
including clinginess may be related to health issues that can be resolved or controlled with proper treatment.