Study: Hugging Your Dog Stresses Him Out - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2016, 11:10 AM Thread Starter
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Study: Hugging Your Dog Stresses Him Out

I’ll be the first to admit that I hug my dog – not frequently (I’m not much of a hugger in general) – but enough to be troubled by the news that hugging your dog actually stresses him out. According to a recent report, hugging your dog may cause your his stress level to increase, and even though you might feel better, your dog certainly doesn’t.

The idea of hugging your dog is widespread, with books such as 'Smooch Your Pooch' gracing many a bookshelf. The book talks about how kids should hug and kiss their dog anytime they please. The book was so popular, while being so incorrect, that the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior (AVSAB) released a statement explaining that they strongly advise parents to avoid purchasing the book, as the information it contained could cause children to be bitten by dogs.
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post #2 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2016, 06:06 PM
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Primates show affection by hugging. Getting on top of a dog show dominance. I think my dogs put up with hugs and we try to keep them short and sweet.
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post #3 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2016, 06:28 PM
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LOL we are doing this on BoxerForum ... not gaining much traction there.

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Study: Hugging Your Dog Stresses Him Out - Boxer Forum : Boxer Breed Dog Forums
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post #4 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2016, 06:32 PM
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Nah. My almost 1 yr old gsd mix tries to hug everyone. Of course this is all prequel to him trying to hump everyone. LOL.
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post #5 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2016, 06:46 PM
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All my dogs did not mind hugs except our first gsd. Our chihuahua has been the snuggliest as I think he welcomes body heat and can be hugged and cuddled to infinity.
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post #6 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2016, 07:57 PM
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I would say it really depends on the dog and the person doing the hugging. I enjoy a hug every now and then, but there are some folks that I wouldn't let hug me.

The study is based on photographs submitted over the internet? Did I get that right, I read the story quickly? I'd like to see the data and how it was obtained.

I will say that both Boomer and Boru enjoy hugs. I absolutely would not do it, if they didn't enjoy it. Francesca not as much. Both Boomer and Boru are pretty dominant, tough dogs and actually seek out hugs and affection from me. I think it really depends on the dog and the relationship. I do agree with the article that if a dog doesn't like it, then it can be a really bad idea. It can be a good way to get bit, especially for a child that thinks it's ok to put a dog in a rear naked choke.
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post #7 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2016, 07:59 PM
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Ok, let's just talk about today. Let's just talk about 1 pen in my kennel. Karma. Yep, she's the one I posted a while back sitting on the girls. She likes hugs. If I try to pick up a baby puppy, she squeezes in-between for her hugs. She doesn't want them short and sweet, she wants to crash into my body, get hugged and get scritches on her side and butt.

Now, she also jumps up and licks me in the face. I try to tell her that that is rude behavior for doggies. She doesn't seem to think so though. So I put out my arm so her front paws can rest on my fore arm, while I hug her and she licks my face.

This is NOT stressing her out at all. If I was chasing her down and not leaving her alone and cornering her or dragging her by a leash so I could hug her, maybe. If I crawled into her dog house or crate after her to hug her, maybe. But she is naked, and is coming to me, she collapses herself into me to specifically get hugs.

And baby-puppies, that are biting like little alligators, when I bring them up to my face and give them a little hug, they lick my face. I swear, they bite my arm like a bite-sleeve, but my face, licks.

Now, understand that they trust me, I am a huge constant in their lives, and their mother is there and she trusts me. If you bring a 3 year old bitch home from the shelter, and you get down on your knees and wrap your arms around that dog, that is going to be totally intimidating. I your 5 year old dog is raised in a single family home with 1 adult and no kids, and suddenly you host your brother's family with three small kids, and they are after the dog, chasing it down, and hugging it, yeah, that might not go over very well after the dog has clearly had enough.

When a vet tech needs to hold the dog so the vet can dig down into an ear, or take blood or something, sometimes the vet tech puts her arms around the dog in a hug.

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post #8 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2016, 09:23 PM
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Mine love hugs. My husband picks them up by the front end, they are wagging and kissing.
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post #9 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2016, 09:29 PM
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I believe this is individual dog specific.
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post #10 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-04-2016, 09:45 PM
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Specific to the person hugging, too. I think if some random person tried to hug my male he would not be happy at all. But he literally can't get enough of me and my husband

And what Slam said and Selzer. When I brought home my male rescue, the first time I tried to groom him he froze all over, rigid, and hard eye. Uh oh. If i had hugged him lol? ? Now, a couple years into living with us he wanted all the love he could get, any way he could get it. Same dog jumped onto a couch with about 6 teenage girls, middle of all of them and they were fawning over him, with a you know what eating grin on his face.

And Slam, LOL at the kid doing a rear naked choke.
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