Dogs are loyal and loving members of the family, so it’s natural to want to show them the same kind of affection that you show humans. It may seem instinctual of you to give your dog a hug either because you need one, or because you simply love them so much – but be cautious! Dogs do not view hugs the same way that humans do, which can have potentially dangerous consequences.
It is true that some dogs (especially therapy dogs) will tolerate or even like being hugged, but many dogs do not enjoy the gesture; especially if they have never been hugged before. Canines heavily rely on body language for communication, and placing one or both arms over your dog can be viewed as a sign of dominance. [click to continue…]