Kissing and hug between people have always been a sign of affection.
It is instantly recognizable and often used instinctively by members of the same family.
We kiss our partners, our relatives, and our small children to show love for them.
we want to do the same with the dogs we love, but:
- Do dogs know what kisses are?
- Do dogs like kisses?
- Why do dogs lick?
- Are dog licks really kiss?
- Do dogs know we love them?
- Is it okay to kiss your dog?
Dogs understand not by nature what kissing means. But there is some evidence that dogs can learn to understand and even enjoy kissing!
Read on to find out if kissing your dog is sending them the right message, and learn how to read his response to your affection, and show your love in a way he understands.
Table Of Contents
Do Dogs Know What Kisses Are?
Before answering the question ‘do dogs like kisses?’, We should ask ourselves, do dogs understand kisses? Do dogs know what kisses are?
Dogs and humans communicate in completely different ways. Unfortunately, we often make the mistake of interpreting dog behavior in human terms.
Humans rely on verbal or sign language to express ideas and emotions. Dogs rely primarily on posture and facial expressions to communicate with each other.
Researchers have had dogs for years studied to try to understand them better. It’s tempting to compare dogs to their wild ancestors, wolves.
However, like dogs themselves, canine language has also evolved in the 30,000 years since they were with humans.
Now researchers estimate that Huskies of today’s domesticated dog breeds have retained the most wolf-like traits. German Shepherds have only about three-quarters of the wolf-like social cavalry. King Charles Spaniels are the least wolf language in the dog kingdom.
These variations even make it difficult for dogs to communicate with other breeds, so it’s no wonder we sometimes find it difficult to understand our pets.
Understanding Dogs Methods of Communication
Dogs are complex creatures with unique ways of communicating. Canines have evolved significantly since their days in the wild. While we use words to tell each other how we feel, dogs don’t really have that luxury.
Of course, they can bark and howl whatever they want, but that doesn’t mean they talk even if the barking is aimed at another dog.
To complicate matters further, these called language that dogs used to communicate centuries ago has been lost through domestication, so dogs have a hard time communicating with other animals of the same species, let alone us humans.
Dog Body Language
Unfortunately, the answer to ‘do dogs know what kisses are‘ no.
But if kissing isn’t natural behavior for dogs, then what is? Learning about your dog’s body language is a great way to understand your dog’s feelings.
Dogs use their body language to communicate with each other.
For example, friendly dogs will usually approach each other from the side rather than directly or frontally.
You may notice that they don’t make eye contact with each other and sniff before you run off to play.
Kissing does not follow this polite dog behavior. When you kiss your dog, you often make eye contact and approach him head-on, the exact opposite that a dog would naturally do!
You can see why this can send a very different message to a dog.
This is important to understand when trying to communicate with your dog. You could accidentally send a wrong message the next time your pup is around other dogs and pay close attention to how they behave around each other.
While some movements may seem random, they can actually have a much deeper meaning.
Aggressive and Submissive Behavior
Have you ever wondered why dogs tend to circle each other before the meeting? It is because they are approaching gently. They can also take a good scent from the other dog to absorb their scent to take. Pecking and assessing the risks of approaching.
Most dogs will approach each other from the side. It’s their way of saying hello without risking surprise for the other dog. May then lick or rub the other dog’s heads.
More aggressive dogs will not exhibit this sideways approaching behavior. They often come closer from behind and take a more threatening stance. This is to let themselves be bigger appear and assert their dominance.
Whether you’re dealing with a submissive dog or an Alpha, you’ll rarely see a frontal approach.
Are Dog Licks Really Kisses?
Dogs and humans don’t communicate in the same way. Do you lick your friends? For our furry friends, licking is instinctive. This habit starts at birth. Puppies lick their parents to get warmth, learn about their environment, and gain access. This is how puppies learn what their parents eat.
Many people with dogs also experience this behavior from dog to human.
Dana Ebbecke, Animal Behavior Consultant at the ASPCA Adoption Center, explained as follows from (The meaning of a dog licker may depend on how the licks are presented to their humans … body are usually very affectionate gestures.)
According to Ebbecke (Sometimes small licks by the mouth are a way for the dogs to get more information up their noses). This type of licking gives your puppy access to scents. Your dog uses the scent to learn more about where you have been.
Sometimes licking is a form of submission to a more dominant dog or a way to find out.
Do Dogs Like Kisses?
Kissing your dog means looking at their faces. Sometimes we go so far as to hug them and wrap our arms around their shoulders.
We can enjoy this with a limited number of people. But think about the last times that a stranger hugged or kissed you, or someone tried to do it while you were not in the mood.
Dogs rarely get close to each other. Instead, two dogs from the other side come closer. Your face close toPlacing the dog is a very assertive behavior in dog language. If he doesn’t learn all of this, he can feel very threatened.
Aggressive dogs can show up more than submissive dogs, trying to make themselves look bigger. It is easy to see how a dog can mistake a child who can kiss it for a threat in this context.
As dogs learn about our behavior, the good news is that most dogs can learn to kiss ours. To associate with affection, and not you with their own way.
Training Dogs to Kiss
The best way to introduce your pup to kissing is to develop a loving relationship from the start. Show him affection as soon as you get your pup.
Hugs and scratches on the tummy are a good place to start.
Grow older and bond with you, and they will understand that kissing is a good thing.
Follow these tips to teach your puppy to kiss on command:
- If possible, start from a young age.
- Talk softly when you kiss your dog.
- Please pay attention to their body language.
How Do Dogs Show Affection?
If dogs don’t show affection by kissing, licking, or cuddling, how do they show affection? How can we tell if our dogs love us?
Dogs show us their love and affection in strange ways! Here are a few you may notice:
- Sharing their food with you
- You greet excitedly when you return from a trip
- Quick wagging when they see you
- Trying to play games with you
- Follow you around the house
- Choose to stay close to you or cuddle up to you
Do dogs know we love them?
Yes, your dog knows how much you love him! Dogs and humans have an extraordinary relationship, where dogs have actually hijacked the human oxytocin bonding pathway normally reserved for our babies.
When you stare at your dog, both your oxytocin levels go up, the same as when you pet them and play with them.
While kisses don’t mean much to your dog, you can certainly keep doing them as long as they don’t have a problem with it.
Your puppy will enjoy being close to you and having your attention.
If you really want to show your dog that you love him, you can give him a treat, take him for a walk or play outside intensively. Either way, they’ll appreciate the attention.
A dog trainer or canine behaviorist can help you set boundaries and address any concerns on your dog’s behalf. Please feel free to contact us for more information.