Why Do Some Dogs Like to Cuddle—and Others Don’t? A Behavior Expert Explains

woman cuddling with her dog outside on a blanket; why do some dogs want to cuddle

You’re snuggled on the couch, relaxing and streaming your preferred show, and who’s curled up right next to you with their head on your lap? None aside from your preferred canine buddy. But have you ever questioned why some dogs like to snuggle … but others do not? Here are some possible factors.

Why Do Dogs Cuddle?
One main reason that some dogs like to cuddle is due to the fact that they consider you part of their close-knit group and wish to show love and love, says Zac Pilossoph, DVM, CMFT, CAVM.

Pilossoph likens pet dog snuggling to canines meeting at the dog park. They smell one another to get a feel for their brand-new good friend and generate a memory of them. If they like each other, they cuddle and rub up against each other to show their fondness and friendship.

There’s another essential reason why puppies seek out close contact. Kristyn Echterling-Savage, PhD, CAAB, BCBA-D, is a licensed applied animal behaviorist and habits expert, as well as founder and CEO of Beyond the Dog training centers. She states aside from revealing love, some pets try to cuddle– or appear to– when they’re displaying fear.

” Dogs afraid of thunderstorms, fireworks, or other loud or frightening ecological events may try to cuddle,” she describes. “Knowing the distinction is important, due to the fact that providing too much attention when pets participate in a fear-related response can make the habits even worse longterm.”

Why Do Dogs Not Like to Cuddle?
Echterling-Savage states every canine has a different method of showing affection, which might be depending on their breed or genetic makeup, or since of early life experiences. Some puppers might only want to snuggle based on temperature, which might alter dramatically whether they’re extremely cold or hot.

We likewise need to consider that the methods we physically demonstrate love aren’t typically preferred by them. Numerous pets do not like kisses, hugs, or tickles. Some do not even like their stomaches rubbed!

Here’s the great news: By paying close attention to your canine’s body language, you’ll select up on all sorts of signals about if and how your pet likes to cuddle.

” Just like us, dogs desire and require physical contact. For numerous, sitting or sleeping near their owner is a method to snuggle,” Echterling-Savage says. “Others invite cuddles or animals by rolling over, vocalizing in a specific method, or approaching with a wiggly body.”

Whether or not your pet gets snuggly, Echterling-Savage says that mentor pets to be physically handled utilizing classical conditioning is necessary. “This is essential in life for grooming and veterinary treatments.

Do Some Dogs Cuddle More Than Others?
While always bearing in mind that each pooch has a private character, anecdotal proof recommends some pets are more cuddly than others. Echterling-Savage says if you’re wondering about a specific breed, inspect their history.

” I generally see toy types as small dog, however types outside of this group are huge cuddlers, too. Many bully breeds tend to be, such as the American Staffordshire terrier, American bulldog, American pit bull terrier, and bull terriers, to name a few,” she states. “Bird canines, too, including the German shorthaired guideline, Vizsla, and Weimaraner. Beware, however– these searching pets tend to develop separation stress and anxiety.”

And even some largest pet dog breeds, such as Great Danes or mastiffs, can be snugglers, too. “I think some giant types get the stereotype of being lap dogs due to the fact that they often like to ‘sit’ on your lap,” Echterling-Savage states. “They don’t know simply how huge they are!”

Pilossoph cautions potential animal parents not to select a type based on a dog’s natural predilection to cuddle, as a dog’s preferences can change over time for numerous factors, consisting of unforeseen health issues or behavioral problems.

Other Ways to Bond Besides Cuddling
It’s perfectly great if your pooch does not want to cuddle. You’ve most likely seen lots of other methods he believes you’re remarkable, such as during playtime, traveling together, or even waiting patiently for you to return house.

“I think it’s crucial to keep in mind that, while snuggling is enjoyable and relaxing with our pet dogs, numerous other activities are essential for our bond and their physical, psychological, and social wellbeing,” Echterling-Savage says.

If you have not had an opportunity to attempt the following techniques for bonding with your canine, they’re enjoyable, simple– and often free!

Do more of your animal’s favorite activities. It’s tough to picture, however not all pet dogs delight in playing fetch. Maybe they ‘d rather dive into an interactive toy, relax in the sun, or take a smell walk (or “sniffari”). As long as you’re engaged with them or even just nearby, the 2 of you are bonding.
Train them to do something brand-new. Favorable reinforcement training constantly strengthens the bond in between you by developing trust and improving interaction. It’s practical for your canine buddy to comprehend fundamental abilities and habits hints, and various tricks make life together more interesting.
If you ‘d like additional bonding or training ideas, schedule sessions with a licensed animal behavior expert.

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