Dog Afraid of Husband's Sneezes & Hiccups
our handsome boy
In the past several months we have been observing a rather unusual behavior in our dog Caper, and we are unable to find a reason for this behavior. We are concerned that it might affect him / harm him mentally if we can't solve this.
Caper sees both me and my husband as his alphas; he is obedient and respectful (we never hit him; we believe in positive reinforcement), but he also happily engages in playing activity with us. My husband might be a bit stricter than I am; or let's say...he takes "misbehavior" a bit personally while I don't.
Now, the issue: When my husband coughs or gets a hiccup, Caper stares at him (fearfully..?) and then immediately runs and goes in hiding. He would even squeeze himself through the cat flap we have installed in our porch door (we have closed the flap by now).
If I do any of those things (coughing, sneezing, or having a hiccup), Caper won't react to it. He might look up at me, but I usually say "Relax" in a calm, assuring voice, and he is fine.
Our other dog doesn't seem to be bothered at all.
Caper, a 5 year old Australian Cattle Dog, is a confident, playful, well-behaved dog. He goes to daycare 3x/week, and everyone loves him because he is so friendly, "speaks fluently Dog". He is VERY handsome and always has a big smile on his face... :-)
Caper has been part of our family since he was 8 weeks old.
Do you have any explanation why Caper might be reacting this way to my husband's coughs and hiccups? Does the noise scare him? (but only my husband's?)
Could the reason be a deeper, underlying issue that has to do with my husband?
I would be so grateful if you would be able to help us out.
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