Paw on face, what is this? - German Shepherd Dog Forums

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Old 06-05-2014, 11:21 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Paw on face, what is this?

I have two Germans, male and female. Both are well bonded and well behaved animals. The female is still a bit of a chewer and overly curious but she is young. Male is solid, very self assured and "in his place" sort of dog. Not much ruffles his feathers.

Anyway, they have of late begun to paw at my face during snuggle time. Snuggle time is any time that I'm at their level, they both simply like to roll around and wallow on me. I love it, it's a great way to check them all over for bumps and whatnot.

The female has always been a roll over type, rub that belly! My male has either watched and picked it up from her or figured out he too enjoys a brisk belly rub. Now that both default to on back legs up position, they both are now insistent on planting a paw on my face or on top of my head. The male pushes and grunts, stretching it seems. He's wicked strong so I get shoved around a good bit. The female is more of a slight contact situation, she pats my face and wiggles her butt. Both maintain contact, it's not a random leg flailing thing.

My question is what would a behaviorist have to say about their seeming need to contact my head/face?
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Old 06-05-2014, 11:28 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I don't have an answer for you.

But my male does exactly as yours and his Sire does it as well. While rubbing him, wrestling or just snuggling.

When we snuggle, he burrows his muzzle deep into my neck and places one paw on my face.

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Old 06-15-2014, 08:51 PM   #3 (permalink)
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My female does this too. It is a curious thing and the best idea I could come up with is maybe she is copying my behavior with her. I like to pet the cheek and muzzle so maybe she is doing this back without the fine motor skills?
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Old 06-15-2014, 09:02 PM   #4 (permalink)
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My boy does it too, I never thought about it this way, that he copies what I do to him and I pet him a lot!!!
He paws my face, puts his paws on tops of my hands.

I'm not sure whether it's OK but it def hurts so I don't let him.

Life is unfair, I can paw him but he can't paw me

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Old 06-15-2014, 10:22 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Interesting quick read regarding pawing.....I like the "You're the boss" potential explanation for your situation.

How Do Dogs Communicate by Using Their Paws? | Dog Care - The Daily Puppy

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Old 06-15-2014, 10:46 PM   #6 (permalink)
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And very true. At least for GSD's.
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