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    How To Know Your Fur Baby Trusts You, According To Dog Trainers

    Trust is key.

    Trust is such an important factor, even when we're talking about our fur babies. Dogs, like humans, have to have trust, and it's up to us to foster their willingness to build it.

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    They say dogs are man and woman's best friend, right? You can't have a best friendship without trust, so here we are.

    Since dogs can't just sit us down with a glass of wine and tell us what's going on, it's important to pay attention to all of their cues when it comes to trust. But what does that look or sound like? I spoke with the owners of Smart Bitch Modern Dog Training to find out.

    Now, don't get carried away and regard the following signs as the end all, be all. These are just a few ways that your dog can relay that they trust you.

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    Barconey and Alcaide were quick to stress that every dog is different and so is every situation, so don't add yourself to the "bad dog parent" club because your pup doesn't check all of these boxes.

    1. They look at you often for guidance and they come to you for help.

    A dog gets rubbed on the head and closes its eyes
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    Does your dog engage with you? How's their attention? Are they looking at you or looking away? These are all questions to consider, Alcaide explained, when determining whether your dog looks at you for guidance or help. 

    2. They demonstrate a willingness to experience new things.

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    "Humans, we take for granted how much we have in life to prepare for the rest of our lives," Alcaide said. 

    The world is a big, scary place, especially for a dog. Think about how we prepare for college, a move, or another big event. Dogs don't have that same luxury, so their willingness to jump into new things may rely on a feeling that you have their back.

    3. Their body language does not convey hesitation or avoidance.

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    This is one point that Alcaide notes that most people might gloss over. Dogs might rock their weight away or dodge affection because they don't trust your intentions.  

    4. They are likely to listen to you during stressful or exciting events or environments.

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    A little goes a long way here. One good example of this is during a vet visit. 

    "I think vet visits are inherently stressful, and many dogs who do well at the vet can be directly correlated to the relationship with their owner and how much guidance they can get from their owner," Alcaide said. 

    5. For affectionate or cuddly dogs, being near you is preferred territory.

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    In other words, your dog just wants to be underneath you all of the time. My corgi likes to plop on my head in the morning and lay there as if it's her claimed land. 

    According to Alcaide, stoic dogs can show their trust by allowing you to interact with them in ways other people cannot. This can include, for example, receiving affection or having you put on certain dog equipment, like a leash. Consider boundaries asserted. 

    6. They seek comfort from you when they are uncomfortable or scared.

    A young woman cups her dog's face in her hands
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    Those fireworks and thunderstorms suck for your dog, but if they're coming to you for guidance, that's a good sign they trust you, Alcaide said.  

    7. They communicate with you (even if it's annoying).

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    The 6 a.m. whines or barking might be a bit annoying, but at the end of the day, your dog is trying to communicate something to you.

    "They trust that you're going to try to listen and to understand them, and that you're going to attempt to meet their needs," Alcaide said.  

    These ladies want you to remember that trust is a spectrum, which means it can also be broken.

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    How does your dog show that they trust you? Tell us in the comments.

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