Most dogs relish getting pets by the people they love, and some are so friendly, they enjoy kind strokes from anyone they meet! But while pups may appreciate our affectionate scratches, all tender touches aren’t created equal.
You may have noticed that your pooch has a particular place she loves being pet – maybe she even starts kicking her leg in ecstasy! And while all pup preferences are different, there are 5 specific “sweet spots” that make most dogs dissolve into tail-wagging bliss.
1. Under the chin
While pups enjoy gentle strokes on the underside of their snouts, this is also a good place to pet a dog you’ve just met (with the owner’s permission and after the pup has sniffed you, of course!). While some people instinctively reach for a dog’s head, the pooch may perceive this as a threat, explains PetMD. Going under the chin is a better bet, especially for skittish dogs.
This is an area that you can pet without the dog being in a vulnerable position, like if they rolled over for a tummy rub (which many dogs love – but not all of them!). When you scratch pooches here, they can keep you in full view so they won’t feel like you’re going to “sneak up” on them.
3. Base of the tail
Have you ever been stroking your pooch’s velvety-soft ears, only to have him turn around and offer you his rear? While it’s not as cute to look at, dogs seem to love being scratched on their lower backs.
In an article by The Bark, Dr. Bonnie Beaver, professor of veterinary medicine at Texas A&M University, explains, “The reason most dogs like their rears scratched is because that is a very hard area for them to reach themselves…Think about the hardest place you have to reach in the middle of your back, and how nice it is if someone will scratch that for you.”
4. Under the collar
As with their rumps, the back of a dog’s neck – particularly under the collar – may be hard from them to reach. Plus, wearing a collar may make the area a little more itchy, so when you’re both safely inside, do Fido a favor by taking it off for a nice, thorough scratching!
Vet Street says that this is another place were pups will enjoy a few extra pets! Giving their shoulders some extra attention won’t make them feel vulnerable, and it’s another spot that’s difficult for them to reach themselves. Plus, who doesn’t love a good shoulder massage?