Reasons Why My Dog Won’t Go Outside Without Me (And How To Help!)

What are the reasons my dog won’t go outside with me? It’s a common question dog owners ask when their beloved pet doesn’t want to go for a walk.

It’s a unique situation with dogs because they love being outdoors. The idea of going for a walk is something that’s supposed to make them happy. However, this isn’t always the case and that’s why it’s important to find a solution right away.

There are several reasons why a dog won’t go outside without you beside them.

The reasons can include:

  • Scary Experiences in the Past
  • Odd Sounds and Sights
  • Medical Concerns

While it’s nice to get the dog to go outside with you, there are times when you may want to release the dog into the yard to be on its own.

If so, your scared dog may not want to be there!

This guide will take a look at what to do if your dog won’t go outside without you and what the main reasons could be for its behavior.

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The HPZ Dog Stroller is exceptional because it’s going to get the dog used to being outdoors without having you in its line of sight. This sleek, easy to handle dog stroller is perfect for short and/or long walks around the neighborhood.

It offers a one-hand mechanism that’s easy to manage in different conditions and it comes with UV-reflective material to keep the dog safe.

Having a high-quality dog stroller ready to go is never a bad idea. It’s going to allow the dog to see the outside world without having to cling to you. It’s a relaxing, soothing way to keep the dog happy and interested in what’s happening without spooking them.

Reasons Why My Dog Won’t Go Outside Without Me

A dog won’t go outside without you because it’s scared, has negative experiences outdoors, and/or has lingering health conditions that make it vulnerable. When a dog feels anxious, it will revert to staying close to its pack (in this case you!).

In general, each dog is going to have a unique set of reasons for its behavior.

Some are going to be scared because they were attacked by another animal outside, while others are going to be scared of new sights/sounds around them. As a result, they are going to want another pack member with them, which means you.

It’s a situation many dog owners find themselves in and the goal is not to panic. Stay calm and continue to work with the dog in getting over its predicament.

Tips to Use If My Dog Won’t Go Outside With Me

Tip #1 – Use a Dog Stroller First

For those asking, “What are the reasons for why my don’t won’t go outside without me?” sometimes it’s going to involve easing them into the process.

Let’s assume a dog likes walking right beside you when it’s outside. This is a common reaction and something dog owners get used to. However, what if you were able to be around the dog, but not in its line of sight?

This is where the dog stroller comes into action as a solution.

The dog stroller allows you to put the dog inside a stroller and have it look in front as you walk. This means you aren’t going to be in the dog’s line of sight as you’re moving. When this happens, the dog is going to get used to the idea of being “away” from you when outdoors.

Of course, this is just a transitional solution but one that does make things easier on the dog.

If it gets nervous, you can check up on the dog. Plus, you can shorten the walks to make it an easier transition phase.

The goal is to get the dog used to the idea of being alone. The dog stroller is a nice starting point and will help whenever the dog gets scared.

My Dog Won't Go Outside Without Me

Tip #2 – Start with the Backyard or a Small Space

Why not start with a smaller outdoor space?

Something like a front yard or a backyard is good. It’s going to allow the dog an opportunity to get used to unique sights/sounds without being too far away from you.

Doing this consistently is going to make it easier for a nervous dog. They will realize this is a “safe spot” and there is nothing wrong with being outdoors. As soon as this happens, it will start making the connection between safety and the outdoors.

Get the dog used to be outdoors inside a confined space (i.e. gated yard) to get them used to the idea.

You want to make sure to stay close for a few days before separating yourself from the confined space.

This means for the first few days, you can go along with the dog into the backyard. However, with time, you are going to want to let the dog stand outside while you are looking on from inside. The goal is to get the dog used to you not being right beside it all the time.

Is it going to be easy? No, the dog will bark and become confused.

The goal is to start with short separation periods (i.e. 30 seconds-1 minute) before making them longer and longer each session.

My Dog Won't Go Outside Without Me

Tip #3 – Separate Yourself for Short Periods Indoors

You also want to try working on a dog that has separation anxiety.

This means they are going to have similar concerns indoors too. If that is the case, you need to start working on separating yourself from the dog throughout the house.

A good example of this would be letting the dog play in a small playpen while you walk into the other room. This is going to get them used to you not being in their line of sight all the time.

The benefits include:

  • Gets the Dog Used to Separation
  • Builds Consistent Habits
  • Eases the Dog into Outdoor Activities

A lot of dog owners don’t do this and that further builds the dog’s dependency on them being around.

You have to work on separating yourself from the dog as much as you can. This is going to build the dog’s confidence in staying alone and that will yield great results outdoors too.

Remember, a dog that isn’t comfortable on its own indoors will likely never feel comfortable outdoors on its own.

It is essential to give it a bit of room to breathe and learn how to adapt. Most dogs will and the goal is to slowly get them used to this idea of separation by any means necessary.

Final Thoughts

For those asking, “What are the reasons for why my dog won’t go outside without me?” it’s time to start with the tips listed here.

You have to realize this is going to take time and it’s important to stay as patient as possible.

Your dog won’t change its behavioral tendencies right away! It’s going to take time and the goal is to implement these subtle changes so it gets used to being outdoors without getting spooked. As soon as this happens, the dog won’t need you there all the time.

Your goal should be to take these tips and make them a part of your daily routine. Over time, the dog will get used to being outdoors without you.

For more on keeping your dog happy, go through these reads – finding the right dog ramp for above ground pools, reasons why a dog is afraid to go outside in the dark, how to protect your dog from coyotes, and the best way to calm a dog.