Your pooch doesn’t bark or whine at you. Nope, they don’t howl either.
They aren’t the vocal type.
Whenever they need anything, they let you know by touching you.
Is this normal?
Keep reading to find out:
- Different ways your dog can touch you.
- 7 tips on what to do if your pooch has this habit.
- 15 real reasons why your dog touches you all the time.
- And much much more…
Table of contents
- Why does my dog always touch me?
- 15 reasons why your dog always touches you
- #1: It’s their way to express themselves
- #2: They want you to do something
- #3: To get your attention
- #4: They want to eat
- #5: Being protective of you
- #6: You’re their blanket of security
- #7: You’re pregnant
- #8: Over-attachment
- #9: You reinforce this behavior
- #10: They’re checking in on you
- #11: Not feeling well
- #12: Your dog likes cuddles
- #13: They want to know more
- #14: They’re testing boundaries
- #15: It’s your dog’s way to show they love you
- 7 tips on what to do if your dog always touches you
Why does my dog always touch me?
Your dog always touches you because they’re expressing themselves, seeking attention, wanting something, feeling hungry, protecting you, testing boundaries, being curious, looking for security, showing love, you reinforce this behavior, or it’s their personality.
15 reasons why your dog always touches you
#1: It’s their way to express themselves
The only language your dog knows is body language.
Since your pooch is not vocal, they talk to you through their touch.
For them, this is the easiest way to communicate with you.
#2: They want you to do something
So how can you tell exactly what your dog needs just by observing the way they touch you?
Well, dogs often jump on their dog parents.
This means they want you to open the door for walks.
They may also bite your hand gently to direct you to the place where they want you to go.
Or your pooch could nudge their nose when they want you to give them their food.
Every kind of touch can mean something specific.
Therefore it’s easier to know what they really want. 🙂
#3: To get your attention
One lazy afternoon, you’re gently stroking your dog while you’re reading a book.
Whenever you turn the page or drink a sip of your coffee, they put their paw on your lap. Then look at you with their puppy eyes.
Somehow, they’re telling you:
“Pet me again, hooman. Please.”
By touching you, they know that they’re guaranteed to receive instant petting.
#4: They want to eat
Every time you’re eating at the dining table, your dog walks up to you and lays their head on your lap.
It’s a very sweet and cute gesture. And you know exactly what they want when they do this.
They want some of your food.
Or you started eating and you forget to feed them. Again.
Same as getting your attention, another reason why your dog will always touch you is that they’re hungry.
They use their face or mouth to touch you because it’s what they use for eating. They’re trying to tell you that they want to eat.
#5: Being protective of you
“One paw a day keeps the bad guys away.”
Is this your dog’s motto?
Do they touch you with their paw all the time so they know your whereabouts?
Sometimes, dogs can really be like that. Especially when they’re being protective of their dog parents.
This behavior dates back to their wolves lineage. Because wolves are constantly with their pack, they’re ready in case a threat is nearby.
Therefore it’s in your dog’s instinct to be with you always.
They may stay close and make sure that one part of their body is touching you. And in case you leave or move, they’ll instantly be alerted.
#6: You’re their blanket of security
Your pooch is a scaredy-cat.
They easily get scared of loud noises at home, strangers, and other dogs.
And when they’re afraid, they keep to you as close as they can. Sometimes they lay their head on your lap. Or they put their paws on your legs.
For your dog, touching you gives them comfort. Just as they would protect you when there’s a threat, they also look up to you to protect them when they’re afraid.
#7: You’re pregnant
Ever since you got pregnant, you’ve noticed that your pooch got extra clingy.
There’s no way they’ll leave your side. And they’re extra gentle now.
Sometimes, their paw is on top of your belly. And they lay their heads near it when sleeping.
You wonder, “Can they hear the baby inside?”
Because of your dog’s extraordinary hearing abilities, it’s possible they can.
And not only that.
Dogs can sense that you’re pregnant because of the physical changes in your body. They can also detect the changes in your hormones and mood.
Because of this, they constantly touch you. They do this to protect you as well as check on you.
Imagine having someone who always taps on you and asks you to do things for them.
That’s not fun at all, right?
So what if your dog does this to you?
You like it when your dog initiates touching or cuddling with you. But not to the point that they do it all the time.
Hey, you have your own life, too.
If your pooch is obsessed with touching you, it could be a sign that they’re overly attached dogs.
They could be a ‘velcro’ dog. (Dogs who stick like glue to their dog parents. At home and even at work.)
Or a dog with separation anxiety (These are dogs who experience anxiety when they’re not with their dog parents.)
Whichever your dog may be, it’s important to address their behavior before it becomes a serious concern.
#9: You reinforce this behavior
The first time you got your pooch, they were a little shy.
So whenever they initiate touching you, you shower them with treats and cuddles to gain their trust.
Looking back, you realize that maybe you’ve spoiled them a little bit too much.
Because now they paw at you and nudge your hand all the time.
It may not have been your intention, but your pooch has associated touching you as a way to get rewards.
#10: They’re checking in on you
You’ve had a hard and long day. Coming home from work, your shoulders are slumped.
Then out of nowhere, there’s a small angel coming to greet you. They bring up their paw to give you a high-five, and then all of a sudden everything is okay.
Your pooch has very good intuition. They can sense your mood and emotions.
So when they feel that you’re feeling sad, they’ll offer you their shoulder to lean on. They’ll also give you a hand.
By touching you, they want to offer you comfort.
#11: Not feeling well
Because your dog can’t tell you exactly what they’re feeling, it’s up to you to try what they’re trying to tell you with their body language.
For example, if your dog is sluggish and they just want to lay their head on your lap all day, it could mean that they’re not feeling well.
And if they constantly touch you with their body such as leaning, this could mean that they’re needing support.
Other than body contact, your dog can show other symptoms of illnesses such as:
- Lack of appetite.
- Decrease in energy.
- Changes in behavior and bowel movements.
Warning: If your dog is experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above, have them checked up by a vet immediately.
#12: Your dog likes cuddles
While there are dogs who absolutely hate cuddles, your dog is into all that touchy stuff.
They can’t sleep at night without having any sort of body contact with you. Whether it’s their butt touching you or their paw on your face.
There’s no need to worry if your beloved pooch is a cuddler.
This simply means that they’re comfortable with your presence and they love you.
#13: They want to know more
You’re embarrassed because your dog nudges their nose on your visitors every time they come to your house.
It’s fine when your dog just does it with their hand. But sometimes, they do this habit on other people’s butts too.
What’s up with that?
The answer to this is simple. It’s your dog’s way of greeting them. Have you seen how your dog behaves whenever they meet a new dog?
The first thing they do is sniff on their butts.
By doing this, they can detect the other dog’s sex, mood, what they eat, etc.
It’s the same as your visitors. Dogs nudge their noses on their butt and hands because they want to know more about them.
#14: They’re testing boundaries
Your pup is still teething and you know that they’ll tend to chew on things. You’re expecting that they’ll be little teeth marks on your shoes or furniture.
Nothing too big.
But one day, you came home to a half-chewed sofa. It seems that your puppy went on a chewing spree.
Uh-oh, someone’s in trouble!
You looked for them and shouted their name.
Your puppy showed up slowly. Like they were walking on thin ice.
“Wow, that’s super cute.” But you tried hard to act all serious.
Suddenly they brought up their little paw. Boop.
They booped on your leg.
Another boop. Now they’re touching your hand.
Why do they do this?
Puppies are still discovering things. By touching you always, they’re testing their boundaries with you.
Will you get mad? Or will you accept their boop and you’re well and good again?
#15: It’s your dog’s way to show they love you
One way to show your spouse that you love them is by touching them.
You cup their face, hug, stroke their hair, and caress their body.
Touching is a universal body language that shows affection. For humans and other animals alike.
So when your dog touches you, it simply means that they want to show they love you.
7 tips on what to do if your dog always touches you
#1: Know the reason why they do this
Touching you is a harmless habit your dog can do. But if they do this excessively, then you have to do something to stop this behavior.
The first thing you need to know is, why are they touching you?
Does your dog touch you to simply get your attention, or is this habit caused by something serious?
And the next is, when did they start to always touch you?
Is there something triggering them?
By knowing the answer to these questions, you will be able to find out the correct solution to this behavior problem.
#2: Go to the vet
Your dog’s habit of always touching you didn’t concern you before.
But as they age, you notice that they’re getting weaker and just lay on your lap most of the time.
They always give a small whimper when they’re not close to you. A part of them must always be touching you.
In this case, you must take them to the vet for a check-up. It’s possible that there is something painful for them or a part of their body is sore.
By visiting the vet, your pooch will be provided with medications and physical treatments that may lessen their pain.
#3: Create boundaries
If you’re having sleepless nights because your dog can’t keep his paw and butt away from your face every time you sleep, it’s time to set some boundaries.
What you can do is give them their own dog bed and put it beside yours.
This way they’ll still be able to sleep near you. And you will have uninterrupted sleep.
Now, in any case that you don’t want your pooch to be inside a specific room (i.e. your home office), you can set up baby gates on its door.
With the gates installed, your dog will not be able to get inside the room and disturb you with their constant touching.
And at the same time, they can still see you.
These are win-win solutions for you and your dog.
#4: Reduce their stress
You’ve figured out that the cause of your pooch’s constant touching is because they’re always afraid.
But obviously, you cannot eliminate all the things they’re afraid of just like that.
What you can do instead is distract them and limit their exposure. This will reduce their stress.
For example, if they’re scared of the loud sounds of thunderstorms or fire trucks, what you can do is play soft music for them. Something that can calm them down.
And then play with them inside a room – let’s say fetch – so they’re distracted from what’s happening outside.
#5: Don’t reinforce it
Your pooch paws at you when you eat. And when you don’t give them food, they start to scratch your leg.
To make them stop, you gave them a piece of steak.
“Now, let me enjoy my meal, please.”
But they kept on scratching you more.
“Oh, come on!”
So how can you stop your dog from pawing you or laying their head on you whenever you’re eating?
The trick here is to ignore your pooch the first time. And when they scratch you further, take your food and leave them alone.
Do this every time they try to ask for food. And be consistent.
After some time, your dog will learn and get the hint that you don’t like that kind of behavior. Therefore they’ll refrain from doing it.
#6: Feed them properly
But you can’t just ignore your dog whenever they’re asking for food.
As their dog parent, it’s your responsibility to give them their needs.
So in order to limit them from getting your attention through touching, you have to do something for them in return.
Schedule their feeding time accordingly. Give them a routine and stick to it – rain or shine.
Make sure that they eat the right amount of food with the nutrients they need. Always check their water bowl if they have enough water.
This way, it will condition them that they’ll receive enough food and they don’t have to beg for yours always.
#7: Encourage them to be alone
You’ve learned that the reason why your dog always touches you is because they’re anxious to be alone. They have to know your whereabouts all the time.
But being with them 24/7 isn’t a healthy relationship for the both of you. Personal space for you is still important.
So how can you achieve this without breaking your pup’s heart?
Build their confidence. Encourage them that being alone isn’t too bad.
Here’s what you can do:
Step 1: Put them inside a room with all their favorite toys inside.
Step 2: While they’re busy, leave them alone in the room for a short period of time (less than a minute is good).
Step 3: If they behaved while you’re gone, give them treats.
Step 4: Continue with this and make their alone time longer as the training progresses.
By doing this, your pooch will be conditioned that you will always come back for them when you leave.
And that they can still have fun while you’re away.
Bonus: Enjoy every minute of it
Touching you is another way they can show their love and trust in you. And if they don’t do this habit to annoy you, then all’s well!
Believe me, your pooch being all cuddly with you is so much better than them ignoring and being aloof with you.
So, the last thing you need to do when your beloved dog touches you?
Enjoy it to the fullest.