Never in a million years did I think I would become one of those crazy dog people that loves her fur babies like human children, but after 2 years and 2 dogs I can confidently and proudly say that I am a DOG MOM! My Watson and Sherlock are a part of the family and as such I show them tons of love and affection in various ways and even scold them every once in a while when they misbehave. I spoil them with treats, playtime, and most of all cuddles. But sometimes it can be difficult to tell if our dogs love us as much as we do them. Here are just 8 ways dogs show their affection for us.
Perhaps one of the classic and easiest ways to know that your pup just adores you is with the wagging of his tail. In recent years it has been determined that not all tail wagging means a dog is happy.
It can depend on which way he wags his tail. A study found that happy dogs tend to wag their tails more to the right while nervous dogs would wag to the left. So if you see your pup’s tail moving a lot to the right you can be sure that he loves you a whole lot!
Playing/ Wrestling with You
Some dogs like to show their affection by simply playing a round of tug of war or wrestling with you. This is an excellent sign that your dog trusts you to be gentle and that you aren’t going to take playtime too far.
Dogs also engage in playtime with their humans as a way to also say that they are super fun to be around.
One of the best perks about having a dog or dogs is all the potential cuddles to be had. In fact, when your dog comes over willingly and lays down with you for a good cuddle session then it means that she wants to be physically close to you.
Dogs are historically pack animals and many enjoy the company and extra warmth of their human companions.
Your Dog Stares At You
Have you ever caught your pup staring at you while you do the dishes or are simply reading a book? Well this is not necessarily because he is trying to figure out what you are doing, but it is yet another way for him to show you how much he loves you.
A study by Miho Nagasawa of Azabu University in Japan found that dogs making puppy dog eyes at their humans experienced a rise in oxytocin, or the “love hormone.” Additionally, it was found that when a human holds the gaze of their dog the human also experienced a rise in oxytocin levels in the brain, creating a sort of positive feedback loop between the dog and its guardian. I guess this is why they love to give us those puppy dog eyes and we enjoy those dog/ human staring contests.
If your dog is a yawner then it is likely that she is ultra comfortable around you and the family. Dogs who feel safe with their people tend to have a loose mouth and might even appear smiley.
This is a type of mirroring behavior that shows that your dog is emotionally close to you. In other words, if your dog yawns when you yawn then she has empathy with you and vice versa.
Your Dog Wants to be in Your Vicinity
Even if your dog isn’t necessarily a big cuddler you might find that he is acts as a little shadow following you around the house (Watson and Sherlock do this from time to time throughout the day). This isn’t because he is being nosy, but instead it is his way of showing you he cares.
Dogs tend to want to at least be in the same room as their humans because of their instinct as pack animals. It is a natural inclination for your dog to want to be in your company because you are his pack now. Just be on the look out for signs of separation anxiety in your dog. Getting too attached to you can lead to behavioral issues like constant barking and destructive behaviors.
Your Dog Greets You at the Door
A good sign that your dog loves you is if she greets you at the door. This doesn’t mean going crazy and jumping all over you. In fact, a super over the top crazy greeting can be a sign of separation anxiety rather than an indicator of affection or love.
Your dog should approach you with a wagging tail to indicate she is happy that you are home.
Watching You Leave Calmly
It might seem that if a dog is calm as you are getting ready to head out the door he must not be that affectionate, but the opposite is actually true. If your dog panics when you leave it is likely a sign of separation anxiety rather than their affection for you.
Calmness in dogs is a sign of affection because it means that they trust you and are confident that you will return. It is an odd idea to wrap your head around at first, but if you watch your dog closely as you leave and return you’ll see how being calm and confident is a sign of your dog’s love for you.
What does your dog do to show you they love you? Let us know in the comments below.