Dogs make for great companions at home. They help people improve their mental health. For instance, through a dog’s companionship, a pet owner will have a better mood and become less stressed.
There is a debate among some pet owners on whether dogs should stay outdoors or indoors. Conventionally, dog owners with a deep attachment to their fur friends keep them inside as they’re considered family. Others may argue that dogs should be kept outside to make them happier. Dogs can play whenever they want outside and have a view that will keep them amused.
While dogs should spend some time outside, keeping them outdoors and not letting them inside the house is more harmful than beneficial.
Different dog breeds have different dispositions. Some breeds tend to be friendlier than others, more trainable, timider, and so on. If you get a dog with a naturally cheery disposition but leave them outdoors, don’t expect that they’d maintain this behavior.
1. Excessive Barking
When you leave your pet outside, it will get bored and lonely, especially if it’s alone. Boredom and loneliness are two of the main causes of excessive barking.
A dog will bark to get attention and to express sadness. Excessive barking can be a nuisance not just to you but also to your neighbors, which can lead to another set of problems. Some neighbors may be kind enough to talk to you first to remind you to get your dog in control. But others may not be that nice and go straight to filing a nuisance complaint.
Outdoor dogs don’t have developed social skills since they are isolated from their adoptive families’ members. Also, dog owners are less likely to train their dogs that stay outside because they don’t find it necessary. Their dogs live outdoors, so it’s not their problem.
This lack of socialization and behavioral training makes outdoor dogs more aggressive. This behavior can put you, as a dog owner, at risk as the dog might attack you even when unprovoked. It might also express aggression towards its surroundings. For example, say you have a beautifully landscaped backyard garden and living area. Your dog may lash out and run over your garden when they get bored.
If you leave your dog outside, it won’t be able to form a bond with you. And as a result, they may develop depression. You’ll also have to take note of the nature of your chosen pet. For example, a pug is considered a “velcro dog.” It is extremely loyal and tends to be very clingy. This is why most of the time, it follows its owner wherever they go. So if a pug is left outside, they may become depressed and refuse to eat, which can then affect their health.
Just like with humans, dogs also need some sunlight. The sun has several benefits on dogs, such as promoting better sleep and improving their mood. But that doesn’t mean dogs should always stay outdoors. Aside from having behavioral issues, outside-all-the-time dogs also have poorer health than those that stay indoors.
1. Closer to Parasites
If you leave your dog outside, it’s more likely to fall victim to parasites. It can get fleas and ticks from stray pets and urban wildlife that may roam around your home.
These parasites can affect your dog’s well-being. For example, fleas and ticks will make your dog feel itchy in several parts of its body. This itchiness will make their skin red and irritated. And they may develop wounds due to constant scratching. These parasites can also cause hair loss.
2. Higher Risk of Illnesses
Dogs that stay outdoors are also more prone to certain illnesses. In worse-case scenarios, the parasites that stick to your dog can cause skin disease if not properly and immediately addressed.
Your dog can also develop other illnesses because of being too close to outdoor elements. Some common illnesses include parvovirus, dog flu, heatstroke, heartworms, and many others.
Outdoor dogs also have a higher probability of injuring themselves if they stay outside. Your dog might try to climb up a tree in your backyard out of boredom or to chase another animal (e.g. a cat or a bird). And if it slips while climbing or falls from a branch, your dog might injury its legs or bump its head somewhere.
You can let your dog stay outside for a few minutes to get some sun and play. But don’t leave it outdoors throughout the day for the sake of its well-being.