A velcro dog is a wonderful thing for people desiring a constant companion. They’re also a bit annoying to those who value their space and privacy. The term was loosely coined by the canine community to describe a pet that sticks to its owner like a piece of velcro. You know the type. They stalk you in the bathroom. They lovingly gaze into your eyes the moment you wake up. Then you realize Fido had been standing there for a long time, waiting for you to stop snoring. Which is both adorable and creepy.
Velcros are either born or made. Indeed, certain breeds are wired to attach themselves to a single person. They don’t care about gender, age or looks. They pick a favorite person, who then becomes the center of their universe. A good example is the Border Collie. The iconic black-and-white dog was specifically bred to work with a farmer. Other breeds like Bull Terriers and Dachshunds also tend to act like glue. That being said, genetics only tells one side of the story. Under the right circumstances, any dog can morph into a velcro. The reasons are interesting.
For some dogs, it’s a case of true friendship. Their human soulmate takes them everywhere, they share a pillow and even eat together. After being raised as a constant companion, this becomes the dog’s natural perception of how things should be. When separated, the dog seeks out its owner with a dedication that would make any detective proud. Bedroom doors are pushed open and forget about privacy in the shower. If you’re in the house, they’ll find you – or bark until you find them.
A different class of velcro is the Nervous Nelly. These canines feel so insecure that they have to stay with somebody in order to feel safe. Pets can and do suffer intensely from separation anxiety, usually when their families go off to school and work. Sadly, leaving such a dog behind can be a distressing time for both parties. Nobody likes seeing their pet cry, howl, scratch at doors to get out and breathing rapidly, sometimes even drooling. Where genetics and close relationships are responsible for most happy velcros, Nervous Nellies could have a mental or physical health issue. Rescue dogs with a history of abuse and abandonment can also display this behavior.
Another downside is that, for certain people, the needs of a velcro pet can be emotionally draining. Some of these dogs seek constant attention and reassurance. They end up sucking their owners dry. The truth is that no amount of reassurance and petting can sate a needy pet. They have to be weaned into independence, but that’s an article for another day.
Apart from a few hiccups, the velcro phenomenon remains a rich experience. It provides one of the most rewarding kinds of relationships for dog owners, especially those who crave a meaningful bond with their pets. Indeed, the love goes both ways – velcros display an amazing affection towards their special human.