Why You Need to Stop Hugging Your Dog?

Dogs are adorable. If you have a dog, you know how it feels to own one. Dogs just how so much love to give. We give our dogs bubble baths, kiss their cute noses, feed them delicious treats, and buy them tiny sweaters once the weather starts to get chilly. When you hug your canine buddy, oxytocin which is a good hormone gets released. However, dogs do not have the same reaction to a hug.

Dogs Hate Hugs

It is important to be blunt with you. Hence, the bitter truth is that dogs hate hugs. Now, it does not mean that your dog does not like you touching them. But, it is the way you start to molest them that is wrong and should be stopped. According to Dr. Stanley, a canine expert at the University of British Columbia, dogs are cursorial animals. They have adapted to running like gazelles. Some other cursorial animals include ostriches, kangaroos, wolves, and horses.

When you put stress on a cursorial animal, their first line of defense is to run rather than attack. Therefore, whenever you hug a dog in a tight embrace, its evolutionary mechanism becomes stymied. It leads to cortisol levels increasing in the dog. It is a stress hormone. Most dog attacks happen when a dog does not have an escape route. You might be wondering that your dog loves your hug. However, if you take a picture of you hugging your dog, you will notice how miserable your dog would feel. This is why you should look for the following signs of misery.

1. Licking Lips

When a dog is under stress, it would lick its lips. Only when your dog licks its lips while you give it bacon, it is okay for it lick its lips. Other stress signs include raising one paw and yawning. According to dog trainers, these actions have calming effects. When a dog licks its lips or yawns, it releases more salivary cortisol.

2. The Head Turn

We all remember how frustrating it used to be as a kid when an annoying aunt or uncle would move in for a smooch. Well, we used to move our heads to the side to try to get away from them politely. Dogs react the same way. When your dog turns its head, it might be a way of telling you to slow down.

3. Ears Pinned Down

To determine the level of attention of a dog, trainers watch their ears. A dog that is listening would have ears that are pricked forward. Dogs tend to lower their ears when they feel nervous, fearful, or sad. If you notice your dog’s ears pinned down, it means that your dog is stressed. The further they are pinned back, the more fearful and stressed they feel.


Now that you know how dogs react to a hug, it might be time to go easy on them and ensure that others follow suit. Besides, there is no need to be selfish.