Dogs lick people for all the reasons mentioned above, and more. I guess she is one of those few that not only love kisses, but seeks to get them. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels have retained the least wolf-speak in the dog kingdom. Before we can answer ‘do dogs like being kissed?’, we need to answer: do dogs know what kisses are? Getting too close and personal to a dog you don't know may be perceived as a threat or rude from the dog's perspective. Immediately she just relaxed into it and was content. Don't miss out on the perfect companion to life with a purrfect friend. Many do and also learn to enjoy them. This may feel like a kiss to us, but what is your dog actually trying to say? Dogs and humans communicate in completely different ways. This encourages the dog to lick, which he or she does increasingly in order to get the reward of attention or food. Beside not doing this would not be fair to the other pets who know the “house rules”! Many dog owners interpret licks from their dogs as a sign of affection, but that isn't always the case. Furthermore, dogs lick for many reasons and if your dog licks your face it is not necessarily a kiss. Dogs hate kisses for the simple fact that kissing is something that dogs don't normally do. His reaction is very positive and cuddles next to me and returns his kisses to show that he really loves me. When greeting unfamiliar dogs, it’s better to learn about other ways to show your affection. There are three main purposes of licking: Firstly, dogs lick to self-groom. Thirdly, young dogs also lick the mouths of older dogs as a form of greeting that also encourages the regurgitation of food. Sammi is a very smart dog. The next time your dog offers you a friendly “kiss,” feel free to accept the love! Your dog has learned that you respond positively to a big, slobbery dog kiss— for better or for worse. Dogs in fact recognize the difference between a human kiss and their own licking. For more information about dog behavior, talk to your veterinarian or consult with a behavioral specialist. During this interaction, ten blood samples were taken from each human and dog. Dog Kisses Are Instinctual Dog licking is a form of communication and stimulation for dogs. Do dogs know what human kisses are? My cats get kisses, one even comes and tilts his head for a kiss. Now, this sheds a little confusion on our main questions: do dogs like being kissed and do dogs understand kisses? As any dog owner knows, dogs lick often and for a … It’s so cute we let him do it until it tickles! However, just like with people, some dogs just will not enjoy kissing. Especially if you pair the action with a nice treat. Kissing is a human trait. You dog could “kiss” your face simply to get more information about the delicious snack you’ve just eaten, or to find out where you’ve been. But as she is now older (going on 7) I am stopping the smooches. Today’s Veterinary Practice. What we term “dog kisses” are an instinctual urge that starts at birth. However, over time they will probably learn. She wants infinite pats on the head, neck rubs, back rubs and play…she loves wrestling, running around with me and especially playing keep away with her toy. German Shepherds have only retained about three quarters of wolf-like social signaling. American Kennel Club. What Do Dog Kisses Really Mean? Licking is one of the instinctive behaviours through which dogs communicate. I had a hard time understanding why she waa putting her face on my mouth and believed it to be a sign she was trying to dominate me. The way I know she would rather not be kissed is she turns her head away and even drops down on the floor as if she is trying to avoid the kiss. When Do Puppies Stop Biting And How To Cope With A... Silver Lab – The Facts About Silver Labrador Retrievers. They get dirty, and then use their tongue to clean themselves up. The Labrador Site is also a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com, 46% of cultures practice romantic kissing. The belief in the curative power of a dog’s lick dates back to ancient Egypt and has persisted through time. Our boy like to soothe us, when he’s tired he licks our hands, arms or legs slowly with his eyes closed. We might enjoy this from a select number of humans. So even if you believe the answer to do dogs understand kisses is a resounding yes for your own pup – there are still some dangers to watch out for. Some may even come to associate kisses with love and attention, and quite a few even enjoy kisses from their people. Why do dogs lick. Brief report. As you can see, dogs do not lick for the same reasons that humans kiss. Although we may never know the real answer, it helps to understand the psychology of the lick. If your dog is licking obsessively, consult a certified behaviorist or trainer. Dogs are taught by their owners through being hugged and kissed often, that it means affection. Some dogs lick their owners face because they want the salty taste of our face but other dogs make it as a way to express their love. If you reacted positively to kisses in the past, they’re more likely to do it again. I give my lab kisses all the time. Ever wonder what your dog is thinking when he slurps your face like a lollipop? The Happy Puppy Site is a participant in the Amazon EU Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.co.uk, The Happy Puppy Site is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Dogs may take eye contact as a challenge, or a sign of aggression. but he does like to be stroked and have his chest tickled. She was naturally submissive and this could be seen in her posturing when approaching people. Turns out, there are lots of reasons dogs like to put their tongues on you, ranging from instinct, to affection, to stress. This shows that the dog is comfortable and confident with the interaction. Over time, they may begin to associate kisses with the attention and closeness of their human companion, which makes them happy. Other, older depictions of lovers or spouses often just shows them close together. You should always keep a close eye on your dog’s body language when you try to kiss them. Soon after she started behavior in which she would push her face onto my mouth. She is also the founder of the Gundog Trust and the Dogsnet Online Training Program, Pippa's online training courses were launched in 2019 and you can find the latest course dates on the Dogsnet website, We have 2 chocolate labs and have smothered them with kisses and cuddles since they were 8 weeks old! They could be licking because they feel threatened when you, your child, or even a stranger bends over and kisses them. If your dog shows signs of stress when you hug them, it’s best to stop. AKC Staff. Dogs are smarter than some people think. If dogs don’t show affection by kissing, licking, or hugging, how do they show affection? International Journal of Environmental Research in Public Health. Ten female owners of male Labrador Retrievers were told to interact for sixty minutes. Especially not a big, tight bear hug. In principle, if you have just adopted a dog and cover it in kisses; it will most likely be confused and react negatively. Do dogs like kisses? They may lick you to show affection back, despite it not being natural dog behavior. Play a game of fetch, take your dog for a walk or give her a gentle brushing. They love kisses, especially our girl as she kisses (licks) us back. According to dog trainer, Victoria Stilwell, “Why is the dog licking? They should wait for your dog to come to them for gentle pets. But some small kisses around the mouth can mean something different. I’ve had 12 dogs and just one of them didn’t enjoyed kisses as much, but she didn’t like touch at all, even so she understood what it was and reacted in a caring way when we sent kisses from distance. You might think that they’re kissing you back. Another groom’s the dog, he sits there allowing it to happen and closes his eyes while he’s having his ears or face washed by my male cat. turning their head away, showing whale eye, lowering their ears, and licking their lips. Let’s take a look. I’ve had him from 9 weeks old and have never had any aggression or snarling from him while having mummy kisses. Nevertheless, there is no scientific evidence but there are a lot of anecdotal references which suggest that dogs learn to enjoy kisses. If there are any signs of stress, it is a good idea to respect their natural instincts and give them a little space. If you have a young puppy, it is likely that they do not know what kisses are. There’s a chance that some dogs may like hugs. Required fields are marked *. It’s definitely a good idea to instruct children to engage in respectful behaviors. Your dog’s tail can tell you if your dog is excited, nervous, or anticipating an attack. Lots of love and affection in our house from cats, dogs and humans, and non of us turn away from it. 1 2. This is instinctive behaviour left over from their wolf ancestry when the mother would regurgitate food. Dog-talk signs that a pup finds kisses stressful include turning their head away, stiffening their body, licking their lips, or yawning – and even licking your face forcefully to try and make you retreat. Because of this, dogs won’t naturally understand the behavior. Of course, not all dogs will enjoy kisses. Before we answer the question “do dogs like kisses?” we should ask, do dogs understand kisses? Why does my dog lick me. Let’s take a closer look. Does the dog in your life have a cat in theirs? The 2 I agreed to raise were doing very poorly by the time I heard about them. Sure, we have all seen the scene of two dogs kissing in a famous Disney movie by slurping on a piece of spaghetti until their lips touched, but real kisses are a whole different story. Dogs don’t kiss. Horwitz, D. et al. But, if kissing isn’t a natural behavior for dogs, what is? Because of this, a dog’s lick is not necessarily interchangeable with a kiss. Many do and also learn to enjoy them. Because dogs learn what our behaviours mean, the good news is that most dogs can learn to associate our kisses with affection. Up until 10 years ago I had only lived with BIG dogs, but Gabby is my first Lab and she is absolutely wonderful…. Is this like kissing your dog? Receiving slobbery kisses from our canine companions is part of the dog-loving package, but do you ever wonder why they do this? Hahaha! It’s just that sometimes, like 3 am it’s not convenient when she decides she wants kisses and I wake to tickling whiskers bevause she wants kisses. Don't miss out on the perfect companion to life with a purrfect friend. They might even lick you to draw your attention to something that’s worrying them. Many dogs learn to enjoy pets and scratches. And do dogs understand kisses? So I gave my boyfriend a peck on the lips and my rottweiler kind of stared at us. Not all dogs enjoy kissing, and there are plenty of other ways you can show your dog affection without stressing them out. So do dogs like kisses? Davis, A.L. They adapt their behavior to live harmoniously with us. Below are eight ways you can tell your dog you love them in a … Sometimes we even go so far as to hug them, throwing our arms around their shoulders. Landsberg, G. & Denenberg, S. Social behavior of dogs. Healthiest Dog Breeds: Which Dog Is Right For You? SHE KNOWS what kisses are and she enjoys them In some ways she is spoiled rotten but I have trained her to listen and taught her the house rules so she would be a pleasure to be with! Of course I realize that this testimony is not a typical one since I raised Gabby and her sister almost from the time they were born. They read humans very well and know how intentioned you are. I don’t want to annoy her. Your dog may not respond well to a fast overhead hug, or to being squeezed tightly, but they do know that you mean no harm by a gentle arm around them, and some may come to like it – especially if they have been hugged since puppyhood. Some scientists suspect that kissing is a behavior rooted in our genes. Is he just saying hello—or planting the canine version of a kiss on your cheek? In fact, when you kiss your dog you often make eye contact, and approach them head-on, doing the exact opposite that a dog would naturally do! If your dog shows apprehension or aggression, it is best to forego the interaction. Your email address will not be published. Some dogs may interpreted hugging as restraint, and getting in a dog's face, such as kissing, might lead to biting, because dogs often bite one another on the snout. Licking is just one of the behaviors that are very common in most dogs. Instead of smothering your dog with hugs and kisses, give them some love in a way they can actually appreciate. Dogs rarely approach each other straight on. Actually, it’s still up for debate whether dogs really like kisses in the human sense. Anyway he stared at us but it was a really fast peck, nothing intense, no hugging either. But, there is evidence that dogs can learn to understand and even to enjoy kisses! They cuddled right up and did not budge! You may assume that dogs licking is an equivalent to a human’s kiss, but the truth is that it is not. I have volunteered in various shelters and finally 21 months ago I was asked to foster two ten days old female Black Lab: They were 2 of 15 puppies and the only person who volunteered to take them all in her home had no previous experience so after 2 days 3 of the puppies had already died! Of course, dogs don’t know what kisses actually are, but they learn to realize that they are good. Dogs are very social and pack oriented animals, therefore many of their behaviors are meant to communicate and respond to others. So do dogs know what kisses are? Do dogs know what kisses are? I would push away and she would just keep doing it. Other dogs don’t ever really lick at all. Just have a healthy awareness of what could be in your dog’s mouth, says Clark Fobian, DVM, president of the American Veterinary Medical Association. It might be as simple as that their water bowl is empty. only goes crazy when we play outside with a tennis ball! Learning about dog body language is a great way to understand your dog’s feelings. In this AnimalWised video we answer this question by providing information on canine affection. It can mean many different things. Don’t Kiss a sleeping dog: the first assessment of: “The Blue Dog” bite prevention program. So it’s always best to play it safe and avoid kissing unfamiliar dogs. This means that dogs likely both somewhat understand and enjoy kisses from their humans. Did the results of the studies mention surprise you? Most do it as part of normal grooming, but it can become a habit. As pups grow older they lick their mother’s mouth. Dog kisses, as we call them, are one of the best parts of owning a dog. Here are a few you might notice: You can read more about the ways that dogs show love for us in this guide. Dogs licking can mean many things from showing affection and relieving stress, to showing submission. Dogs don't hug or exchange French kisses as humans do. Labs have the most incredible personalities and want nothing but love cuddles food and ball lol. This seems like a version of dog kissing, but what do dog “kisses” mean? He's a male, and quite the jealous one too, he's sooo attached to me. But, many dogs will not enjoy being hugged. If your dog seems totally unfazed, kissing is probably okay, but bear in mind that just because your dog lets you kiss them doesn’t mean they’ll appreciate a kiss from someone else. Unfortunately, we often make the mistake of interpreting dog behaviour in human terms. This brings us to the next question – “Do dogs like kisses?”. Does the dog in your life have a cat in theirs? When dogs lick your face in return, this isn’t always a sign of returning affection. Read on to find out if kissing your dog is sending them the right message, and what your dog’s kisses might mean. This is a very important question, because kissing dogs along with blowing in their faces, hugging them, looming over … Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below! (I know they did me!) Although it’s true that some dogs can learn to like kisses, trying to kiss an unfamiliar dog on the head can come across as an act of aggression rather than affection. Well, not so much a problem because I don’t mind it and she really loves her kisses – even on the top of the head. Problem was, it was the only such sign of dominant behavior. Dogs, however, have a strong sense of smell and therefore do not need such closeness. There is still a great deal we don’t know about dog behavior. So it’s no wonder that we sometimes struggle to understand our pets. Or they might surprise them with a hug and a kiss while they’re sleeping. 2012. These variations even make it hard for dogs to communicate with other breeds. But, the most prominent discovery was the rise of oxytocin levels in dogs that were frequently kissed by their owners. I created a monster in my dog. Does he or she seem to like it? Basically, the dog licks his owners face first as a greeting or in an attempt to get food. For others, their reaction to dog licking is more of a shriek of disgust. Dog as a second Language: A primer for humans. Now researchers estimate that, amongst today’s domestic dog breeds, Huskies have retained the most wolf-like language traits. Licking can also be a submissive behavior between dogs. You should learn how to interpret the rest of their body signals to know whether it’s an affectionate “kiss” or not. I eventually started to withdrawal the kisses as she got older until I stopped. I kiss my 9 year old lab whom i’ve had from a puppy, I wouldn’t say he enjoys it, more puts up with it ? Big, wet sloppy dog kisses are one of the best things about owning a dog — at least, according to some people. If your dog is simply wagging their tail back and forth this is a sign of sheer happiness.-Following you around the house. Do you kiss your pup? It’s like they all are a young girl’s pop star idol. But we do know that our canine friends do love to lick, and there are many reasons why they do this. They may lick you to show affection back, despite it not being natural dog behavior. The “kissing” behavior likely started just between dogs. What we term “dog kisses” are an instinctual urge that starts at birth. Some dogs love kisses, especially if they are used to it since puppies. What has your dog been doing? I don’t think my dog really likes to be kissed. It soon dawned on me that she actually might be seeking kisses. Whether you enjoy playing kissy-face with your dog or not, it's best to understand if you should be allowing these dog kisses or not. Instead, two dogs greeting each other will approach from the side. Just like people, dogs are unique. In this context, it is easy to see how a dog could confuse a child leaning in for a kiss with a threat. Dog bite risk: An assessment of child temperament and child-dog interactions. Some dogs will be happier (and humans safer) if we find other ways to express our love. According to dog trainer, Victoria Stilwell, “Why is the dog licking? Specifically, the blood sample was analyzed for levels of oxytocin and cortisol. Furthermore, the behavior is reinforced by a process called habitual learning. Keep this is mind especially if you adopt an older dog. Dogs do not innately understand what kisses mean. They do not rush up and hug one another, although if a dog grabs another dog it is done so as a sexual or aggressive advance. Children are also usually not able to interpret the warning signals when a dog doesn’t want to be kissed. 30th October 2004. Kissing is not a natural part of doggie behaviour, although many do learn to enjoy it. But she stays right under me and actively encourages me to keep petting her and talking to her. Hahaha! Of course, not all cats like the same kind of hands-on loving, so it ultimately depends on your cat's level of tolerance for sentimental human shenanigans. Licking is also used as a sign of submission, to explore scents, to get attention, or even as a warning to back off. Dogs primarily depend on body posturing and facial expressions to communicate with each other. On their part physical proximity is a sign of trust and affection. Is the Romantic–Sexual Kiss a Near Human Universal?’, Examining the Possible Functions of Kissing in Romantic Relationships, Associations between the Psychological Characteristics of the Human–Dog Relationship and Oxytocin and Cortisol Levels, 25 Adorable Valentine’s Day Gifts for Dogs, Dog Quotes – Find The Very Best Words For Every Occasion. She learns my body language and verbal cues like lightening and responds very well. Dogs often give us an irresistible urge to pet and pamper them and this often entails kissing them, but do dogs really like being kissed? Some dogs express love and affection differently from others. Children are impulsive and often appear as a threat to dogs by approaching them when they’re eating. Some dogs, however, only tolerate kisses because we’ve trained them to accept this behavior as normal. Many dogs, when hugged, will show signs of distress such as turning their head away, showing whale eye, lowering their ears, and licking their lips. Kissing, actually, is a rather new behavior. Most of the bites happen at home, to children younger than 7 years old, and with dogs that they’re familiar with. Nearly every human knows the value and meaning of a kiss. The study discovered many things about human-dog interacting. Doggie kisses are cute and we know it is a loving behavior, but when does it become too much? Do dogs like kisses? Or do as animal behavior expert Roger Abrantes suggests, “Just close your eyes, yawn, and turn your head away. There is some evidence that dogs learn to understand and enjoy kisses. Receiving slobbery kisses from our canine companions is part of the dog-loving package, but do you ever wonder why they do this? Can dogs kiss us back? She much prefers my hands. But do dogs understand kisses? the ways that dogs show love for us in this guide. But she is very affectionate and obedient, so she tolerates the kisses I sometimes can’t seem to help myself planting on her head, face and tummy. I have owned many dogs over the course of my life. As any die-hard cat lover might enthusiastically tell you, felines are often very affectionate, sweet and cuddly creatures, in spite of their cool, independent and detached public images. Plus, in the meantime, they will enjoy the attention and closeness kisses cause! Of course, kissing strange dogs is not recommended, the same way kissing a strange person is weird, but with few time they understand what kisses are very well. Dogs do not have an innate understanding of kisses. 2013. This can help your dog learn to love receiving kisses from you. A dog may lick the muzzle of a more dominant dog to avoid retribution. Kissing doesn’t follow these polite dog behaviors. But, a lot of dogs don’t like being hugged. So, do dogs like it when you kiss them? I don’t care what science says! However, over time they will probably learn. If you have a young puppy, it is likely that they do not know what kisses are. But, you might be saying – if dogs don’t know about kissing, why to dogs lick your face? You can usually determine whether a dog likes kisses or not by watching their reactions. Sometimes this behavior also takes the form of social grooming, where dogs will groom each other in order to improve their bond and mesh their scents. Plus, in the meantime, … Andrea … Merck Veterinary Manual. Though dogs do not know what kisses are at first, it is probable that they learn from human interaction. You can see why this might send a very different message to a dog. They pick up on all they ways we tell them we love them – including hugs. Dogs are observant. Others always find human kisses uncomfortable. Dog Kisses Are Instinctual Dog licking is a form of communication and stimulation for dogs. You never know whether they might have been abused and have serious trust issues. How can we tell if our dogs love us? Both would stop moving every time I kissed them! The same is true of greeting them head-on, and getting up close to their face. I love him and he loves me! So do dogs know what kisses are? By now you know that dogs don’t kiss each other in the same way we kiss our loved ones. My dog Howie loves when I kiss him and he loves to kiss me back! When dogs have been well socialised from a young age they can come to understand kisses and cuddles as your way for showing affection. Most dogs tolerate kisses from their owners fairly well. Use the following signs to see if your dog likes it when you kiss them. If the answer to ‘do dogs know what kisses are’ is no, what do kisses mean to dogs? It’s tempting to compare dogs to their wild ancestors, wolves.