Thanks to science, we now have compelling evidence that your pooch hates it when you hug her or him. According to Dr. Stanley Coren, a professor of psychology and expert in dog behavior, dogs almost always show signs of anxiety or stress when being cuddled by humans, as stated in the San Francisco Chronicle.
Signs of stress or anxiety in dogs include raising a paw, licking, yawning, lowering their ears, showing the whites of their eyes, and avoiding eye contact, according to Psychology Today. But as a dog owner, would you accept the idea that your pup hates your loving cuddles?
That’s not how experts see it…
Although the idea that dogs hate human cuddles is not accepted by dog owners, it is widely accepted among experts. Dr. Coren found a lack of scientific research on the subject so he decided to study a couple hundred of doggie photos.
Coren studied 250 photos of individuals hugging dogs that he found randomly on the Internet. Obviously, there were millions to choose from. However, Coren believed he can summarize the immense data quite simply, as he wrote to Psychology Today.
And the result was…
The result was that the Internet actually has countless pictures of happy humans hugging what seem to be unhappy pups. Coren uncovered that the dogs in 81.6% of the pictures showed at least one sign of anxiety, stress, or discomfort, while only 7.6% of the dogs appeared to be comfortable with being cuddled.
This means that…
More than 4 out of 5 dogs find this human way of showing affection to be unpleasant! As stated Coren. Actually, that is the key: Dogs are not humans. According to New York Magazine reports, a dog’s natural reaction when faced with a certain threat is to run away.
But what does it mean in relation to hugs?
Well, by hugging dogs, you deprive them of their ability to deal with potential threats. Instead of doggie cuddles, experts recommend showing your affection through playtime, pets, or dog treats and toys (Just anything except your ‘annoying human hugs’.)