Showing your love to your pets is very important to ensure that they are comfortable being around you. Pets such as dogs are very smart animals. They know and remember those who take good care of them, and those who neglect, as well as those who try to hurt them. Being responsible dog owners is crucial to have a long and harmonious relationship with your pets. One of the ways you can show that you truly love your dogs is by petting them. This simple act can mean a lot to dogs. Knowing how to properly do the act is needed to ensure that you are not hurting your dogs instead.
The Act of Petting
Being social animals, dogs tend to enjoy the company of their human owners. You can easily notice a dog waiting to feel your love by the way it comes to you whenever it sees you arrive. A dog usually gets closer to humans because it wants to be stroked at certain areas of its body. Petting seems like a simple act, but if you do it incorrectly, your dog may actually hate it, or feel threatened and may even attack you. Normally, dogs like to be stroked on their backs, bellies, and behind their ears. You will know if you are doing the act correctly when your dog calms down, closes its eyes, and then starts to pant softly.
A dog will sometimes guide you on its preferred area to be stroked. The act of petting can help you reinforce the behavior you desire your dog to have. Other than just forming a bond with your pet, petting is also a good way to find out if your dogs are being bothered by certain parasites. You might also find wounds that you do not normally see without touching and stroking your dog.
The Effects of Petting on Dogs
Since petting is a way to show your pet that you love and care for it, studies have shown that, in most cases, your dog will try to spend more time being close to you. Your pet’s blood pressure usually goes down and endorphins are released that make your dog feel happy being with you. Oxytocin, also known as the bonding hormone, is increased whenever you pet your dog. These are some of the positive results that may come from petting your dog.
Things To Consider When Owning and Petting a Dog
Before you go out adopting or buying just about any type of dog, you still need to consider that there are certain breeds that may be dangerous to pet, especially if you are fairly new at owning and petting a dog. Dogs can be trained to become obedient to their owners. There are just some breeds that are less likely to look for affection at the start of your relationship with them. These dog breeds are known to have shorter fuse or have a higher prey drive. Some dog breeds are known to be more independent,(livestock guardian dogs) and as such, they don’t have the same drive to be petted.
Dog breeds like the pit bull, chow-chow, wolf-type dog, Doberman, and Rottweiler, to name a few, are known to be happy for their owners to pet them – but not nearly so happy to have strangers touch them so take care, beware when reaching out to pet an unknown dog to you of these breeds.