5 Common Ways Dogs Show Affection

Dogs and humans have an unshakable bond, one that goes back tens of thousands of years. With such a rich history of companionship, it’s no surprise they’ve developed some pretty sophisticated means of communicating with us, and vice versa. It’s actually pretty amazing, if you think about it, that this entirely different species lives alongside us, so close and in tune with us, despite not using words to speak with us, that we consider them our family members, even our babies.

In today’s blog, we want to call attention to our favorite dog behaviors, the ones that show us how much they love us. We won’t blame you if it makes you want to snuggle your puppy extra closely after reading.

5 Ways Dogs Show Us Love

Giving kisses

This one is pretty simple to understand, since it’s similar to how we humans often show affection. Sure, dogs sometimes lick us when we’re sweaty, and that’s likely for the salt (we get it, dogs), but it also goes to show that they have some sort of innate desire to groom us, much like they’d groom their young or another dog in their pack. Licking is a way for dogs to show us they consider us their family, too.

Jumping on us

While perhaps not the most desirable behavior from a human’s perspective, jumping on you is a very clear way for your dog to tell you he is excited to see you. Some dog experts also claim it’s because they are drawn to human faces and are trying to jump up to get a closer look. Regardless, a jumping dog is typically a happy dog, and if it’s because he simply saw you enter a room, you’d better believe that means he loves you.

Making eye contact

Similarly, dogs tend to make eye contact with us as a way to connect and show their trust in us. Since dogs often avert their eyes when looking at other dogs to avoid showing signs of aggression or creating conflict, the fact that they look into our eyes is one indication of how much they trust—and love—us. It’s a simple gesture, but much like with humans, it shows us they’re listening and that they’re there for us. Talk about a best friend!

Showing their bellies

Now that we think of it, many of the most common ways dogs show us how much they love us all stem from trust. And that’s not all that dissimilar to humans, really. Another way dogs show trust is when they flip onto their backs and expose their bellies. Yes, they’re definitely hankering for you to pet them, but willingly putting themselves in such a vulnerable position is a sign they feel completely at ease in your presence. It also means they know you’re a sucker for belly rubs, but who cares?

Leaning into us

The dog lean is well-known to dog lovers everywhere, and it’s akin to a full-body hug. When your dog comes over to nudge or lean into your legs, it’s his way of saying your presence is soothing to him. By merely touching your body, he’s showing you he loves and seeks comfort in you. I personally enjoy holding my dog’s paw to let him know I feel the same way.

Kaiser is excellent at eye contact and the occasional face lick.

Dogs show affection in oh-so-many ways. What ways does your dog show you he loves you?

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