Why Does My Dog Paw At Me?

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So, how many times have you received a paw from your friend? I am sure this coronavirus-induced quarantine must have brought you this experience at least once!

Your dogs are more likely to paw at you if it is your emotional support dog. They want your attention as much as you want their affection and comfort. Even though there are other health-benefiting options but most people prefer an ESA.

Each puppy and an adult dog have a unique communication style. Some like to bark and convey while some dogs just paw at you! And, if you are really your dog’s best friend, you will easily understand what he has to say!

In fact, your dog’s body language says a lot about your dog. Let’s decode their body language. 

Reasons why?

Honestly, there are varieties of reasons why your dog paws at you. Either they are reminding you about their meal, water, a walk, or just want your attention. Some reasons include:

  • It is probably an attention-seeking behavior of your dog for pats, water, food or playtime. 
  • You reinforced this behavior! For instance, you pet your dog when your dog paws at you. He gets habituated to it. Hence, they learned this behavior. 
  • Pawing is only an issue when it bothers you. Check whether your pup actually needs something- food, water, etc. 

Dog Body Language

So, when you first get a pup in your house. You learn about him as much he learns about you. When you take him to a well-grown garden, he will roll into the green grass. When he brings you a ball, he wants to play fetch. When he barks, he is asking something. Having a dog is adjacent to having a kid. You reckon their behavior and act accordingly. 

Have you ever looked at your pet and wondered what they were doing? Often, dogs use their body language to express the way he feels or thinks. We all know that naturally, there is a connection between communication and behavior. 

Analyze their immediate environment and learn why they are behaving the way they are behaving. If they are in a new park or meeting a new puppy or stranger. They might behave weird at home too. 

Why Even Understand a Dog’s Body Language?

Want your dog to be happy and healthy? Take out time to understand your dog’s body language and have a better understanding of their needs. 

Dogs communicate via their body. Try watching at their ear position, jaw tone, posture, and overall behavior to understand his thoughts or feelings. Understanding their body language also builds a bond with your pet. There is nothing like the relationship between you and your dog.

Moreover, they will become more social. They easily gel with strangers or other pups. It will result in decreased fear and conflicts. 

Whether you’re an entrepreneur or working in a corporate world, you need to pay heed to your pet’s emotional needs. They can really help you decrease your anxiety, ease your loneliness, and manage stress as an entrepreneur. Plus, with the social distance in effect, companionship from your pet can really be useful for your overall wellness. The emergence of emotional support animals shows an improvement in the efficiency of our health care system.

Why does my dog paw at me?

If you grasp the body language of your dog, you will know what your pet wants each time he expresses something. Most dogs do not show an actual stroking action. Laying paw on your hands or feet is a sign of showing trust, affection, and closeness between. It’s their way of expressing a special bond with you.

On the other hand, this might be a sign of “Don’t Stop”. Suppose you have been petting him for several minutes now, and you just stopped. You’ll soon feel a paw at your hands or legs saying to not stop. He is reaching your hand to ask for more, please!

Another aspect to look at this gesture is the establishment of authority. Some dogs might mean to show their submission, others want to show they are the boss! Sometimes pets do wrong things and they know it. Then, they come to you and to coax you, they give you paw. They show that you’re the boss and they respect you. Whereas, a dominant dog thinks just the opposite. Dominant dogs want to assert their dominance on their owner or master. Such behavior will be accompanied by other actions like- resisting commands, guarding food and toys, or eye contact.

Should You Allow It?

We understood the various aspects of dogs giving their owner a paw. Now- Should such behavior be promoted?

It is crucial to establish that you’re the alpha in the “pack”. Dogs shouldn’t be habituated with getting what they want and whenever they want. Do you know how a lad becomes a spoiled brat? You do not want to spoil your pet and encourage such cynical behavior.

Such habits quickly become annoying. Dogs use this as their tactic to get what they want always. However, in general, dogs paw at you to gain attention. If you do succumb to your dog, it will open an opportunity for behaviors that lack manners.

While we love our pets, it is essential to instill a relationship that is respectful on both ends. Your animal companions are no different than your human companions. As you wouldn’t like a friend tugging at your arm for everything they need, the same goes for your pups. 

Final Thoughts

Communication with your pet and understanding their body language is important. However, depending upon your overall pet behavior, decide whether you should encourage or discourage such gestures. What matters is that you both have an assertive communication and bonding with each other. If you really want to stop its pawing, start with giving them positive attention. Be consistent with their training. They will soon learn to not be pushy with their expressions. Instead, they will gradually learn to sit quietly and wait for his attention.