10 Ways Your Dog Shows Just How Much They Care

Written by: Dr. Katy Nelson

November 24, 2015

We know that we love our dogs and so do our friends and family. But do they love us back? Some of our dogs jump all over us and lick our face frantically while some of them follow us around the house and lay at our feet. Here are some ways to tell if you pup really loves you or simply likes the way your face tastes.

1. They Lean On You (Or We Lean On Them)


Like humans, dogs lean into you as a source of comfort and affection or to protect you from danger that they sense. Whether they are anxious, nervous or in need of extra attention – it’s a sign you’re someone who can protect and keep them safe.

2. They Are Empathetic


Have you ever been sick, angry or crying and your dog whimpers and comes by your side? Dogs are social animals and they have an instinct to take care of their pack just like wolves do in the wild – you are their pack. Studies have shown that dogs have similar behaviors to human toddlers. During the study they set the dog’s owner and stranger 6 feet apart and asked each individual to talk, hum or pretend to cry. The study showed that dogs can detect emotion and show empathy when you or a stranger are in emotional distress.

3. They Look You in The Eye


Brian Hare, director of the Duke Canine Cognition Center said that when dogs look at you they’re “hugging you with their eyes.” Hare explains that oxytocin – a chemical released that helps bonding between new mothers and their babies – is also released when dogs play, touch or stare at you.

4. Sleeping With You

BarkCare - Sleep

We’ve all waken up with a puppy paw in our back or doggie-breath in our face. Dogs in the wild sleep as a pack which is a sign of loyalty. Also when a dog lives with or is good friends with another dog, they want to sleep together too – but only if they have permission. It’s only natural for your dog to sleep with you since you are their family.


5. They Bring You Their Toys


When your pup brings you their favorite toys, not only do they want to play—although that is also a sign of deep affection—they also think you’ll love their slobber-covered squirrel or ripped up Kong as much as they do.  They are offering their most prized possession to please you and as they say, “sharing is caring!

6. They Follow You


Your dog does not pick up on social cues like “alone time”. Wherever you go they see the need to follow you there too. They don’t need “alone time” from you and tend to not understand why you need it from them. Sometimes it can be separation anxiety since most dogs are left home alone or like most times, they want to be close to you. Appreciate the fact that they want to be near your side.

7. They Give You Kisses – On Your Face


Doggie kisses are one of sign of affection and welcoming or that you have leftover food on your face and that is greeted by positive attention, such as hugs or kisses from you.  Mother dogs communicate with their pups with kisses and grooming them which is often known to stimulate breathing. Now your dog isn’t trying to stimulate your breathing at the moment but simply telling you “Hello! I think you’re awesome!” or “I’ll give you kisses until I get a treat.

8. Sniffing Your Business


Has your dog ever stuck their noise all up in your business? It’s embarrassing and awkward but it’s equivalent to a handshake. Just how they sniff other dogs butts at the dog park or on the street, it’s their way of getting to know you and familiarize themselves with your scent.

9. Jumping On You/Roughhousing

giphy jumping

These frowned upon behaviors are a big sign of love. Not only is it healthy but it’s an important part of your dog’s social development. Being greeted in this way by your best friend is an instinctive way of recognizing you as the parent of the relationship. Obviously these actions can go to far, so if you have a puppy train them to know when enough is enough.

10. They Smile at You

BarkCare 2

Dogs do smile – and you’ve probably witnessed it numerous times. Happy dogs tend to have a looseness to their bodies that is around their mouth too. Along with a loose mouth comes a loose and slobbery tongue which points to a good mood according to the Caring Hands Humane Society.

Next time your pup does any of these things it’s usually a sign of love, affection or you just taste good. So be the pawfect pack leader accept all this love and always give a lot back.

Featured image via @miss_elle16 /Instagram

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Written by: Dr. Katy Nelson

November 24, 2015

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