Why Do Dogs Put Their Paw on You
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Why Do Dogs Put Their Paw on You

Is it an endearing trait or is it one that asserts dominance? The big question today is why dogs put their paws on their humans. At first glance, this body language seems to be a comforting one. We will say that your dog is trying to communicate with you or trying to tell you something. It could also be as simple as attention-seeking. Whatever it may be, we’re here to decipher the meaning behind a dog putting his paw on you.

Black and brown colored doberman hugs woman
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Is It Good or Bad?

If your dog put his paw on you before, it’s very likely he is saying something good. Whether it’s saying “I love you” or wanting or attention if a dog puts his paw on you, it’s generally a good indication. Putting his paw on you is very different from stepping on you, which can be a show of dominance. To sum up, a dog putting his paws on you is a very good thing.

Why Do They Do It?

Just like us, when a dog put his paw on you in the past, it’s most likely a way to say they care. Just like when we pet our dogs or kiss them on the head, we’re trying to show them we care. A hug and a kiss is easy human body language to express companionship. A dog pawing at you or placing his paw on you could just be as simple as extending contact and reciprocating affection.

If you pet them, they might want to pet you back! This is even more evident when your dog is putting his paw on you while you are petting him. You may also see a paw tap accompanied by lip smacking, yawning, and flat ears to indicate great content.

So we have identified a major indicator to be love and affection, but can a dog putting his paw on you mean anything else?

The answer is yes, a dog pawing you can mean a great number of things. Other reasons why dog owners experience their pup pawing could be due to insecurity, nervousness, and fear if something is bothering them. As dog owners or dog parents as many of us like to be called, your dog sees you as a pillar of love, comfort, and safety. If they see something they are scared of or creates anxiety, your pup will reach to you for consolation and solace.

Other times the pawing could be trying to let you know they need to go out for a potty break or they are hungry.

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How Do I Know What They Want?

Dog putting paw on book with eyeglasses
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The best way to decipher your dog’s coded message is to assess the rest of his body language and the situation. If your dog is lying comfortably in your lap and exhibiting lip smacking yawning, and flat ears with his paw, then your pup doesn’t want anything but contact and reciprocating affection. Human companionship is very important for your dog.

If your dog is anxiously pawing at you while whimpering, then he could be physically uncomfortable or scared. In this case, look around you to see if you can identify what’s bothering him and remove it, or show him that everything is okay.

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If you notice your dog’s pawing is due to an empty food or water bowl, then refill it right away. Another reason for pawing is your dog wants attention or he’s bored. This type of pawing will be slightly impatient with sometimes whining and frantic behavior. If you see him rushing around being unsettled, then your dog most likely wants to play.

At times, what your dog wants could be written on his face. Their eyes can communicate more than you think, so try and understand your dog and what he wants, which can be achieved over time.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Why do dogs give you their paw without asking?

If your dog gives you their paw more so than placing it on you, then it’s very likely that he wants your attention. To be sure, you should analyze the rest of his body language and the environment around him. It isn’t that difficult to master communication with your dog, all it takes is time to try and understand him.

Do dogs feel love when you kiss them?

Yes, dogs feel love when you kiss them. Most dogs can associate a human kiss with the strong bond of love he has for you. He may reciprocate your kisses with dog pawing. You can see if your pups like your kisses by assessing your dog’s body language. If he reciprocates or is wagging his tail, then he knows you love him!

How Do I Know if My Dog Loves Me?

A dog’s body language can be different from ours. A way to understand if he loves you is to look for a sign such as him protecting you, seeking your attention, licking you, wanting to be close to you, and when he puts his paw on you. These are all signs of affection from your dog.

Conclusion

Dog putting paw on mans hand
Image by RebeccasPictures from Pixabay

A dog puts his paw on a human they love. It is a thing they do to show affection to their humans. If they do this with eye contact during a petting session, then it means they are trying to bond with you. However, this behavior could be something less positive such as fear and anxiety, in which case you should attempt to comfort your dog. It is also a good idea to check your dog’s food and water bowl to make sure they aren’t hungry or thirsty.

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Did You Know?

Dogs respond to your tears! If he senses that you are sad, a dog puts his paw on you for comfort. It’s their way of telling you everything will be okay.

Extra Tip

A dog stepping on you is a more bothersome tendency. It is more likely that he is anxious and fearful, especially if you are in a standing position and he is on his hind legs. An excited dog can also step all over you, in which case it’s better to correct this behavior through training.

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