That’s why your dog turns his back: 3 reasons you stress him out

Szénási Szimonetta

2023. December 2 - Photos: Getty Images Hungary

Has it ever happened that you hugged or kissed your pet out of love, but it turned away? You probably misunderstood each other!


Your dog often turns back, even though you just want to hug or maybe give it a kiss? Be careful, what is a sign of love from your side can be very disturbing for the animal.

Although the domestication of dogs happened a long time ago, many still misinterpret the body language of these infinitely devoted and loyal creatures. It is crucial for owners to learn to interpret their pet’s signals. Let’s go through what the animal does when it is tense and trying to relieve stress:

  • stares into the distance,
  • turns his back,
  • yawns,
  • licks himself,
  • sniffs the ground ,
  • rapidly licks its nose and snout,
  • squints.

If your dog turns his back, you may be stressing him out

As evident from the above list, turning away is a typical stress-relieving reaction. It’s possible that one of your gestures doesn’t sit well with the dog, causing it to feel tense

1) Kissing doesn’t always work

Many owners still tend to forget that a dog is not a human, so what feels good to us might be uncomfortable for them. Kissing is typically one of those actions. Some dogs like it or tolerate it better, while others may become tense. It also depends on the breed and individual personality.

2.) Hugging may not necessarily be pleasant either

Just like kissing, hugging is not always the best way to show your four-legged companion how much you love him. If they turn away during a hug, you can be sure that he do not desire your closeness in this manner.

3) Violation of personal space

When you want to give your dog a kiss, tightly hug him, or simply settle next to him while he eats, you are essentially intruding into his personal space. Yor pet probably won’t run away, but his muscles will tense up. May becomes like a statue, turning his head or upper body away. This is his way of trying to reduce the discomfort caused by the situation.

How to love well?

So, if you truly want the best for your companion, be satisfied with simply being close to him, perhaps petting his if he seem to enjoy it. For dogs, just the presence of their owner is often enough to relax and make them happy.

It’s important to learn your pet’s language well! Spending a lot of time together will help you flawlessly interpret his signals.

Turn your back too!

The turning away works both ways. If your dog does something that bothers you, turn away from him. He will quickly understand that you don’t appreciate that particular behavior.

Mental well-being

By learning to interpret your dog’s nonverbal signals appropriately, not only will the relationship between you two improve, but you’ll also contribute significantly to the psychological well-being of the animal.

behaviour dog behaviour dog body language dog human communication dog human relationship hug kiss

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