I have heard many owners say “my dog is scared to death of flies” over the years. Flies are not just another species of bug that caught your dog’s attention, but a real source of fear for your pooch. If you have a dog that is afraid to death of flies, here are some helpful hints on how to help them during their terrible time.
With these tips and lots of understanding from owners, I hope my article can help you find success with your own insect-fearing pup. Your dog will be free from its fear in no time!
Reasons Why Dogs Becoming Fearful of Flies
1. Dogs do not like the buzzing
The buzzing noise of a fly annoys some dogs, especially those who are hyper-alert.
This often seems to happen for dogs without a history of being attacked by bugs, but it can be the result of a frightening experience with flies in the past.
The noise will appear to make the dog more alert and increase the hair-trigger sensitivity of its nervous system.
2. They think they are bees
The shape and color of flies are also like that of bees. Some dogs may think they’re bees and thus scary for them. If your dog believes that it is a bee, then you should know that it is time to teach them otherwise!
In order to do so, you will need to first get your dog used to the shape of a bee. Then, catch some flies and place them in front of your dog so that they can observe their movements.
They should get used to the movements of the flies and the direction they are going. This will help your dog learn how to be more relaxed around the flies.
3. Flies jump at them
Flies jump at dogs either very fast or very slow, so this scares some dogs to go away. When flies jump at dogs, it’s a sign of an attack.
This can cause a lot of anxiety for any dog, and that’s why some dogs try to go away. A good way to help your dog is by finding something to wave around or throw at the fly.
Flies are not interested in going near anything that moves very fast, so this makes it difficult for them to jump at your hands or face. Try waving a piece of cloth or even a piece of paper.
4. They move quickly, and in unpredictable directions
Flies jump quickly, which makes them very hard to catch. Most dogs have a very short attention span and are easily bored.
The dog tends to get distracted by every little thing, so flies might be another reason why your dog is scared of flies.
5. Dogs like to chase, but flies run away
As a result of their jumping motion and unpredictable movement pattern, they can’t be caught by dogs.
When dogs try to catch flies, they go unpredictably from one place to another,[the dog] doesn’t know where [the fly] might have gone because [the dog] doesn’t know how far it has gone.
Therefore, it seems that dogs cannot catch flies. This can cause them to feel disappointed, frustrated, and even scared when encountering flies.
6. Flies can be annoying when around food
Some dogs are scared of flies because when the fly goes on the dog’s food, the dog thinks that a fly is going to eat it.
This will make your dog feel anxious and scared. which is why some dogs feel afraid when the fly comes near their precious food. Your dog wants to guard its food against the danger of being eaten by the fly.
7. They hurt because they can sting you or bite.
Flies will bite or sting in order to feed on the dog’s blood. Some dogs think that this is painful and scary for them. This is very true for those dogs that are hypersensitive to pain.
The greater abundance of stinging and biting flies in a location, the more likely they are to affect your dog’s behavioral traits and mood.
Some dogs have a strong tendency to react to these conditions.
8. The fly lands on their face or paws, which the dog interprets as a threat
Because some dogs see flies as scary, they avoid being close to them. However, if a fly lands on their body, it looks like the fly is about to attack them and this makes some dogs scared of them even more.
9. Dogs learn to associate flies with discomfort or even pain
As flies attack, they can hurt the dog. So, if a fly lands on your dog’s ears or legs, they will scratch those areas in an attempt to get rid of the fly.
This means that some dogs are scared of the insect as they associate it with pain.
10. Some dogs have poor eyesight
Many dogs have poor eyesight, so they rely on their sense of smell and hearing to understand what’s happening around them.
So, if your dog lacks this sense, he won’t be able to see flies landing on his fur and that makes him feel nervous.
11. Some dogs are nervous by nature
Some dogs were born nervous. If you adopted a puppy with a genetic predisposition to being anxious and fearful, you may have found yourself with a dog that’s scared of flies.
So, having looked at some of the many reasons why your dog could be scared of flies, let’s see what you can do to help resolve the issue.
Ways to Help Your Dog Get Rid Of Their Fear
1. Reassure your dog by pats and hugs to let him/het know that the fly will not cause harm.
Your dog might feel more secure with some positive reinforcement.
When a dog shakes, his/her body is telling you that he/she is frightened and does not want to be touched by the fly in any way.
2. Use dog-friendly sprays
Strive to keep your dog as comfortable as possible. There are products such as citronella spray which dogs do not react badly(or at all) to.
These can be purchased at most pet stores.
I recommend you to use them because they are good for your dog’s body as they do not cause any harm. They will also keep the bugs and flies away from the dog without causing stress because they smell bad for them.
3. Stay calm when he is scared
No one likes to be around someone who is anxious and nervous. If your dog is scared, try to keep calm and act as normal as possible.
4. Teach him that flies aren’t dangerous
To do this, you will need to expose your dog to the fly in very small doses.
I recommend you to use a towel with a few flies on it while talking to him in a soothing tone of voice as if you were reassuring your dog and telling him that there is nothing wrong.
In this way, you are making our dog used to the presence of flies without scaring them.
You will have to do this for a few days or even weeks depending on the case but give your dog time because he will feel better soon enough!
5. Use anti-anxiety medication if needed
Depending on the situation, if you think it will help your dog, you can use anti-anxiety medication.
I would recommend you to talk to your vet about this before giving it to your dog as there are many different medications that could be used depending on the case.
6. Use herbal remedies and aromatherapy oils
These are natural remedies that might help your dog to feel better. Lavender, chamomile, peppermint and lemon balm are some of the oils which can be used.
In this way, you can create a relaxing atmosphere around everything in order for your dog to feel more comfortable.
7. Talk to your vet
Vets will have different opinions depending on each individual case so ask them if they have any thoughts and ideas.
It is also good to talk to them not because you want an answer but because it will help you find what is wrong with your dog.
8. Teach your dog to walk ahead of you
This one sounds a little bit strange at first but after thinking about it, it will make perfect sense.
If your dog gets scared, he/she might run in front of you and be on the spot of the fly instead of staying by your side where he should be.
You can do this by putting a hand on his or her side when going out and giving him/her commands such as sit, stay, come here and then walk slowly up to the spot where the fly is so everything will be okay.
If it does not work at first, do not despair! Try again later.
9. Create positive associations with flies
Increase exposure by going to parks and beaches where there are more flies. This way, your dog will learn that flies aren’t dangerous because they are everywhere.
This is a great step forward for your dog’s recovery!
10. Don`t punish them for showing fear
If your dog is scared of the fly and you want him to get used to the sight, you can do this by rewarding him when he looks calm with the flies with a reward such as a rusk or piece of meat.
Thus, these are the 10 most important things to remember when your dog is scared of the fly. If you do this, I am sure that your dog will get used to them soon!
Dogs are sometimes frightened of things that seem silly to us, but they are just trying to tell us something.
When your dog seems afraid of a fly or other type of insect make sure that he is not in pain and then help him regain his confidence with some positive reinforcement and affection.
The tips in this article will help you with this process.