An investigation looked at some 250 images of dogs being cuddled by their handlers. Subsequently, a canine behavior expert came to some big conclusions that will particularly surprise you and said that some pets show various signs of stress.
Stanley Cohen is an expert in the field of dog behavior and a professor of psychology at the University of British Columbia. He mentioned that in these photos the dogs had flattened or pushed back ears, he also pointed out that the dogs showed the whites of their eyes or sometimes licked themselves excessively, indicating in all these cases that these dogs were not at the comfortable in this situation.
Expert says you shouldn’t cuddle your dog
The results obtained by Stanley Cohen’s research using the images showed that in 81.6% of cases, dogs showed at least one sign of stress, while only 7.6% showed a calm dog and finally, 10.8 % of dogs have indefinite behavior, that is, we don’t know for sure what the dog was doing.
But the question is: what makes hugs make our dog so stressed? Later in Psychology Today, Stanley Cohen explained that dogs are animals genetically designed to run, which implies that when under stress or threat, the first method they use to defend themselves is not their teeth. , but their great ability to flee the situation. So if in your case, your dog has ever tried to wriggle out of your arms when you gave him signs of affection, you know what he means.
Also, he says it’s a big mistake not to let your dog “escape” from your hugs. Indeed, preventing a dog from running away by immobilizing it with a hug can undoubtedly increase its stress level, and in the worst case, if the dog is very anxious, it could even bite you.
Finally, Stanley Cohen gave us great advice: “It’s best to reserve hugs for people who are part of your two-legged family or group of friends, not four-legged. If you really want to show a dog affection, the best thing you can do is give him a treat, give him a massage, or say a few kind words to him.”
It can be difficult to resist the urge to give your dog a hug, because for human non-verbal language it is a very precious and important gesture, because it makes us feel closer to the people around us. But we must understand that not all species are the same and that we must respect our differences.
Your dog will always love you and you will always have much better options to show him the pure and real love you feel for him. And your dog will thank you all the more for it!