The current wake of technological advances has made life more enjoyable. You may think of it as more sophisticated, and for sure, technology makes it so. From the traditional vacuum cleaners, we now have robot vacuum cleaners. They are smaller yet as effective as the traditional ones. They also produce far less noise than what existed before.
Considering these advancements, especially with the noise levels, one may readily assume that everyone will be comfortable with it. This may be the case with your children but not your pet. Typically, you will be excited over the newcomer and give it a name. However, you may notice how unpleasant your dog is.
He may get agitated around the vacuum cleaner and bark at it. He may also attack it. The question in mind, though, is why behave towards the Roomba in such a manner? What is it with the cleaner that makes the dog hate it? How can you help the two get acquainted? Let’s find out.
An Issue With Olfactory Receptors
Dogs have up to 300 million olfactory receptors, which means they can smell distinct odors. When vacuuming your house, dust pops into the air, releasing a stinking smell to the dog. The canine may suffer an overload on his nose as a result.
This effect may be worse if you are cleaning after a long time. The dirt and dust from beneath your carpet may be too much for him to handle. Since he has a strong sense of smell, he may repulse the machine. According to this intelligent creature, he will rightly associate his discomfort to the Roomba, hence the downward path to hatred.
The Aspect of Noise
One might rightly argue that traditional vacuum cleaners are noisier than the Roomba. True. However, there’s more to this. It is true that the Roomba robot cleaner only makes mild noise as compared to the traditional cleaner. According to dogs, their sense of hearing tells them something slightly different.
Just as dogs have a sharp sense of smell, the same applies to their hearing. Experts say that they are sensitive to high pitched noise. For this reason, we may view the Roomba’s noise as mild, but for him, it is too loud. They may therefore abhor this kind of helper at home.
Another reason may have something to do with the feeling of intrusion. The dog might view the robot cleaner as an unrestrained member of the family who can move as he pleases. To the dog, he may see it as one who enjoys all freedom. It’s quite funny that dogs have their formed family hierarchy. In it, you, the owner, rank high, and others are subordinate.
With this line of thought, he may have difficulties on where to place the Roomba. It’s even worse as he sees it moving freely to every corner of the house, thus stirring the hatred. Many dog owners end up scolding the Roomba to reassure the dog that the cleaner is subject to them.
How to Acquaint Your Dog With the Roomba
In acquainting the two, the goal is not for them to be close. It is more about getting the dog to learn that the Roomba is not as harmful or as threatening as he may think. The aim is to create a familiarity between the two for a peaceful co-existence. Here are some suggestions to help you attain this objective.
Early Age Exposure
The best time to socialize your puppies is when they are between 3 to 16 weeks old. At this early stage, the chances of your dog getting used to different things with much ease are high. You may introduce your Roomba at this period. If trained early, the dog will not be afraid of new things as an adult.
However, if your dog is already an adult, this strategy might not work. Instead, you can use the desensitization process. How is this achieved? Let’s discuss it more in detail.
It involves progressive exposure to a fear factor. Since the Roomba is strange to the dog, you can allow him some time to explore it. He can assess it from far, sometimes trying to get close to it. Allow him time to do this. You can also reposition the cleaner for him to comprehend it fully.
You can use the cleaner in a different room to lower the noise. During this time, offer the dog a treat. He will thus associate the Roomba with something positive. You can advance by leading him towards the noise. Typically, he will run back to his snack.
You can then progressively bring the cleaner nearer to the same room as the dog. With his snacks at hand, he may give little or no notice to it. However, to avoid accidents, you should be close by to monitor the progress.
If the dog is still unable to bear with the Roomba, give him more time and space. You can take him for a walk during the cleaning period or keep him occupied elsewhere.
While other dogs may have no problem having a Roomba robot vacuum cleaner, others may react differently. By following the desensitization process, you may help your dog to associate the cleaner with something positive. Your dog will, therefore, have no course to fear or hate the robot.