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Yes, that's me. Guilty as charged. I am a hugger. Perhaps I am projecting a human emotion on my dog, but it brought me comfort. Then I saw this article.

Psychologist recommend against hugging your dog. I guess I had never seen this fear in my Kippers eyes, but its worth a discussion. How does your dog react to a hug?

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Yes, that's me. Guilty as charged. I am a hugger. Perhaps I am projecting a human emotion on my dog, but it brought me comfort. Then I saw this article.

Psychologist recommend against hugging your dog. I guess I had never seen this fear in my Kippers eyes, but its worth a discussion. How does your dog react to a hug?

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If I do not hug my girls, they start rubbing their eye and will kiss me anything to get me to squeeze them close.. I have never seen fear, little Bella lays her head under my chin and makes a little cooing sound. I would think they would show fear if not expecting it on someone strange, I have seen that in my girls
 

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Sure, I've always hugged mine and they usually lick back. I've never seen fear in their eyes. What I do see is excitement and a wagging tail and the hug usually leads to playing.

Rick
 

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That is just too sweet that little Bella lays her head under your chin and makes little cooing sounds when you hug her! So precious to hear.
 

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I think this is really about knowing and reading the individual dog. I am not a huge hugger, but my dogs get plenty of loving physical contact. Both poodles have a command of "give hugs" which means they can jump up and wrap their front legs around me. I give them lots of sweet talk and nice ear scratches while they hug. I don't do this with Peeves since he weighs almost 100 pounds. He loves to lie on his or our bed and get great belly rubs.
 

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I think there is a big differnce between hugging and cuddling. You only have to look at the photos on social media to see the innumerable dogs thoroughly uncomfortable with hugging, while their owners or other humans post "cute" pictures. On the other hand, Poppy loves to snuggle as closely as possible, and is completely comfortable with being held close by people she completely trusts. For me, cuddling is gentler, and means recognising that the cuddlee may need a way of escaping; hugging is tighter, and does not allow for any means of escape.
 

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My dogs have all loved a quick, "I love ya, buddy" hug. When I read that article, I thought I would really watch for the slightest sign of stress or discomfort. None. Happy and twining around my legs.
 

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I have been hearing a lot of experts on dog behavior arguing over that article. No one can agree on it. The study that was involved was completed just by looking at random pictures. Random pictures don't tell you much when it comes to things like this. Who is hugging the dog? How long are they hugging? What is going on off camera? Do they know this person well? And on and on..

I have one dog that does not like to cuddle or get hugs or kisses but he does like to be close to you and petted-just not embraced. I have two others that love to cuddle and give and get kisses and hugs. It's kinda like people, some like hugs, some don't.
 

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I am a big hugger of my girls! Stella loves, loves, loves to be hugged and will climb right up in my lap and lean back on me for hours. My Border Collies will "allow" me to hug her but she does not really like it. She is too busy playing and "working". She does sleep on my pillows over my head all night, so she likes her own style of close time with me.
 

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I hug my boy, have from the beginning. We have two types of hugs, one where he sits on my lap and one where he stands up against my leg and I bow down to him. These are the rules I follow:

- I only hug my own dog, these days I don't know any other dogs that intimately

- my dog is only hugged by me, children especially will be introduced to safer methods of loving on dogs
- hugs may be had only when Sulo happily jumps in from the first cue
- short, light, gentle hugs only
- for me, hug time is hugging only, no other activities until hug time has been concluded and Sulo is back to the floor
- for Sulo, hug time is kissy-face-allowed (he loves kissy-face)
- Sulo gets down whenever he wants to or shows signs of discomfort
- Sulo gets neck rubsies when I hug him (he loves neck rubsies)

Sulo hasn't refused a single hug this far, even when it's been initiated suddenly by me, and usually he likes to linger for a while especially in the evening.

I generally don't hug dogs, I just don't feel that kind of affection towards other's dogs usually and I definitely don't want to take unneeded risks with unfamiliar dogs.

With Sulo, hugging is actually one of his functions as my informal support dog, so I've raised and trained him that way, making use of his natural enjoyment of invading human laps which was very apparent from day one. I generally hug him 1-3 times a day or less. I follow my rules to minimize Sulo's stress from hugging--this far he seems to gladly allow it and sometimes even initiates it.
 

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Very interesting, and I know I've read something like this before. I agree that a lot of dogs seem to be stressed by hugging. Some are okay with it, but I think it's also true that a lot of people don't "read" the signs of dog stress very well and so can't really tell.

Sugarfoot is not a hugger. I don't know if that was always part of his nature or if the attack made it even worse (as during the attack I was indeed restraining / "hugging" him while the dog bit him), but to this day he doesn't like arms to be wrapped around him. He doesn't even like to be encircled with hands latching on his travel harness, though he will stiffly tolerate that. So, no, I don't hug him.

He enjoys being scritched and having his back and chest and head rubbed, and will actively solicit pets, and also will rub against people like a cat (we call it "Kitty!"), so he's not afraid of contact, just something about the hugging. Maybe the restraint aspect of it.

--Q
 

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When I first sit up in the morning, Archie likes to stand up, slip his paws over my shoulders, and lean in for a hug. It's pretty cute.

He does not like getting randomly picked up and hugged, especially when he's busy with something. He tolerates it just fine, but you can tell it's a bother.

I've learned not to let little kids pick him up or hug him because if they do it once they want to do it constantly. And while, again, he's good-natured about the whole thing, I don't want to reach the point where his patience runs out.

Cleo only recently discovered that she likes cuddling (much to Archie's chagrin), and she'll frequently ask to get picked up when something's scaring her, but she doesn't especially like being restrained or hugged.
 

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There are a few things we humans (aka primates) do to dogs that aren't naturally things dogs understand and in fact can be construed as aggression or obtrusiveness. Intrinsically, hugging is probably not something they relate to. When I say "intrinsically," I mean deep down, natural, original normal to them thing...HOWEVER...dogs have evolved with humans. I agree with those who say for some dogs, they're fine and understand that it's not a bad thing. Some don't feel that way. I think dogs learn soooooo strongly by association that when they have a history of hugging being associated with affection, love, happiness, food, hugging goes from uncomfortable to comfortable...often times.

My Doberman was a real hugger. this is a photo of my daughter and him. He sat, my daughter would kneel down and he'd put his paws up on her shoulders. When she (or I) would attempt to release ourselves and stand upright, he'd pull us toward him with those big paws. He wanted more hugs. lol. Don't let those alien eyes fool you.:alien: He was not freaked out. He was such a lover.




Even some dogs hug each other in one way or another...not usually super tightly though.

Here's my son's dog, quite the hugger.




My Poodles like hugging just fine...no signs of stress or calming signals. Jose`, on the other hand doesn't like it too tight. He likes to be held and cuddled, just not too overly confined. He's one that particularly dislikes his head petted, something many dogs dislike. His dislike is quite pronounced. The Poodles don't mind.

Anyhow, of course, dogs don't usually use their legs for hugging like primates do. And groping towards a lot of dogs signifies a possible threat instinctively sometimes. Squeezing too close or tightly just isn't typically a normal thing to dogs. Some have learned to like it fine. Some not. I wouldn't hug a dog I didn't know or one that was clearly uncomfortable with it. And yep...many people don't recognize body language, calming signals. Sometimes licking or wagging is indeed a calming signal or a show of submission, not necessarily love and appreciation.
 

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I'm going to echo those who say it depends on the dog. I've had very loving, loyal dogs that would not tolerate my arms around them on any part of their body, petting yes, but absolutely no hugs. The two I have now not only love to be hugged, but expect it every day.
 

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I agree with many on here that it depends on the dog, I have met and had many that love to hug. One thing about this article that I think is a very good point is it was talking about a stranger hugging a dog. And yes without proper introduction I think could be stressful for the best of dogs.
I knew a woman that lived down the street from me many years ago that had the greatest Great Dane, after getting to know each other he would run up and give me a hug. (then usually stand on my foot and lean against me).

One Day she took her do down to the beach, some woman came running up from across the beach and grabbed the dog of a hug, and got her face bit. So I can see value in educating some of the public that that form of introduction is stressful (I find it stressful when a person I'm not comfortable with just tries to grab and hug me).

Even some dogs hug each other in one way or another...not usually super tightly though.

Here's my son's dog, quite the hugger.

I love this photo, it looks so cozy curled up next to the fireplace!
 

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My dog hugs me! and pushes her head under my neck rubbing like a cat. Meeowoof!
 
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