Our dogs have a unique and charming way of expressing their love. Whether it’s a gentle nuzzle, a joyful bark, or the irresistible warmth of a furry cuddle, our dogs have a language of love that goes beyond words. With Valentine’s Day coming up and February being the month of Love, we thought it would be fun to share all the adorable, sweet, and even weird ways your dog says, “I love you.”
Licking is one of the more obvious ways dogs show affection. For dogs, it is a way to bond with their owners.
When dogs lean their full weight against you, it signifies complete trust. This means your dog sees you as a protector. Your dog may do this for comfort, but when they lean against you, it is the equivalent of a full-body hug.
Bringing You Their Toys
Presenting you with their prized possessions is a major sign of affection. They could be bringing you gifts since they see you as the head of the household. If the toy is broken, they may see you as an intelligent who can fix it for them, a sign that they trust you with this important task. Plus, wanting to play is a sign of puppy love!
Nudging You With Their Nose
Nose nudging can mean things like craving attention, wanting to be a pet, or loving you. Any one of those is a sign that your dog wants to be near you and wants physical contact.
Making a Big Sigh
Soft vocalizations, like sighs and groans, are the signs of contentment in dogs. When you hear your furry buddy do that, it means they are happy.
Making Eye Contact
Long gazes are reserved for people they feel very comfortable with. Maintaining eye contact with your dog helps deepen your bond. When your dog looks at you, the brain releases oxytocin, which is the hormone that mothers’ brains release when they bond with their puppies.
Sleeping Near You
Dogs love to sleep in packs for protection. If your dog feels the need to sleep in your bed, or at least in your room, it’s because they see you as a member of the pack, a family member.
Showing You Their Belly
Nothing says they trust you more than your dog rolling onto their back and asking for a belly rub. Since a dog’s tummy is one of their most vulnerable parts, this act puts them in total submission, the ultimate signal of love and trust.
Following You Around
Since they are pack animals, dogs always want to be with you. It’s part of their genetics to follow you everywhere because they consider you a part of their pack. But they also do it because they enjoy your company and might suffer from FOMO or the fear of missing out.
If you have ever seen your companion flash their teeth at you, that’s a smile. Most people don’t notice it, but it is a way of expressing affection.
Raising Their Eyebrows
According to a study published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, dogs have evolved a special eye muscle to better communicate with humans. They are able to move their eyebrows and make that sad, sweet puppy dog face that tugs at our heartstrings.
Wagging Their Tail
Tail wagging is often misunderstood and might not always be a good thing, But if your dog’s tail is relaxed, raised at about mid-height, moving in a circular motion, and causing a full body wag, that’s a sure sign that your dog is happy and excited to see you.
Jumping Around
Jumping around is a sign of excitement in dogs but can also be an unwanted behavior. Here’s where positive reinforcement training comes in handy.
This might not be your favorite expression of love, but it is healthy and can benefit a dog’s social development. You should use training to ensure that roughhousing doesn’t go too far. That means teaching your dog not to bite or bark during rough play.
Getting Jealous
In dog language, jealousy is a sign that your dog really likes your attention and wants to keep you all to themselves.
Stealing Your Shoes and Socks
If your dog raids your dirty laundry for your smelliest clothes, dirtiest shoes, and stinkiest socks, it’s a sign of love. It shows that they missed you while you were away and can’t get enough of your unique smell. It’s okay to discourage this behavior for the sake of your shoes and socks, but remember, they are doing it out of love.
Recognizing Your Name
You know that dogs learn their own names. And you’ve probably noticed, if you have multiple dogs, that they also learn each other’s names. But did you also know they can learn the names of people they like? When dogs hear the names of people they like, they’ll get excited at the thought that person might appear.
So, the next time your canine companion gazes into your eyes or curls up beside you, remember that these are not just moments – they are silent declarations of love, affirming the extraordinary bond between humans and their beloved dogs. Embrace the joy, cherish the cuddles, and revel in the unmistakable language of love that makes life with dogs an endlessly rewarding journey.