Could you be doing things that annoy your dog without you even realizing it? Dogs often tolerate human behavior because they are loyal and easygoing. However, there may be some things that you or others do that your dog secretly hates. You can probably think of a few things your dog hates because it’s obvious. Perhaps your dog puts on the brakes when you try to bath him. Maybe he shies away from hugs or certain types of handling. He may even get visibly upset or depressed when he doesn’t get his way.
Even the most laid-back dog will hate some of the things we humans do. Yes, certain things are unavoidable, like vet visits or grooming. However, there are other ways we can try to take it easy on our dogs. No two dogs are exactly the same, so what one dog hates another dog may enjoy.
It’s really cute to look at photos of people hugging dogs, but the reality is not so comfortable. Many dogs do not enjoy hugs, especially from strangers. Placing your arms around a dog’s neck or body may be perceived as a threat. Most dogs tolerate gentle hugs from trusted humans, but that doesn’t mean they actually like them.
A better alternative is to let the dog cuddle on his own terms and pet him along the back and on the chest (especially if you don’t know the dog well). Of course, some dogs do love to be hugged. It’s important that you know your own dog and understand his limits. Pay attention to his body language to help you understand how he feels when you hug him. If he leans away, averts his eyes, yawns, licks his lips, has a worried look, or shows other appeasement gestures, he’s probably uncomfortable.
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