Patting the dog(How+9 interesting facts)

Everything about patting the dog will be discussed in this article. We will also discuss the right ways to pat the dog as well as different types of patting.

Patting the dog

If you see a cute little pug or a gorgeous husky, all you would want to do is to pat the dog. Patting the dog is an innocuous act, but one should be very careful while doing it. There are some important dos and don’ts we would like to share about patting the dog. 

Dogs are man’s best friends, but it should be kept in mind that all dogs are not the same. Some dogs are aggressive, while some dogs are friendly. Approaching a dog is one of the important things that you need to know before patting the dog.

It has been scientifically proven that dogs like to be patted. This builds up a fine connection between the dog and the owner. Some breeds of dogs are mild and are not potential threats such as labs and pugs. While some breeds such as Pitbulls and Hounds are not so friendly and can cause some serious injuries.

Kids usually have the curiosity to hug dogs and play with them, but it is always best to know the nature of the dog before approaching it. You don’t want to hurt yourself or your loved ones while strolling in the park. That is why it should be avoided running towards stranger dogs to hug or pat them.

Before moving further with patting the dog, let us first clear the concept of patting.

What is Patting?

Patting is derived from the word pat and it means gently touching someone to exhibit appreciation or care. You usually observe people gently rubbing the head of a dog or wrapping their hands around them. It is referred to as patting the dog and done when an owner treats the dog after some task or when the owner is feeling affectionate.

Patting the dog is an act of affection and care. We as humans have a strong tendency to love and spread affection, by hugging, patting, or kissing. 

While in a dog’s world this language has another meaning. Most dogs don’t like to be wrapped in the arms or complete physical contact, they prefer to be given treats and if needed just a little pat or a flutter.

Before patting the dog it should be kept in mind that not every dog is the same and certain protective measures should be adopted while approaching the dog for patting.

Approaching a Dog

Every dog is different and we don’t know all the exact difference as laymen. What we can do in this scenario, is to get ourselves aware of some simple basic steps needed to approach a dog. Some of the important step to approach a dog is mentioned below:

  • Approach the dog from the side and don’t directly look into its eyes, as they consider it as a sign of threat
  • Never lay down on the floor or sit in a position where the dog can cause serious injury
  • Ensure your safety first
  • Ask the owner of the dog is aggressive or friendly
  • Maintain safe space between the dog and yourself, and give it time to analyze your intentions
  • Make pleasant sounds like,” Hello little friend” with a friendly tone
  • Offer the dog your hand from a safe distance 
  • Let the dog come to you by itself and don’t rush
  • If the dog comes to you pat it gently and offer him a treat if you have any.

Never surprise a dog from behind or look fiercely into their eyes. Dogs are friendly, but they still are animals and they don’t have the perception as you do. So, ensuring your safety should be the most important step.

How to Pat The Dog?

Dogs should always be approached from the side and not from the front. After you have ensured your safety and the dog has made its way in your hands comfortably pat it gently and slowly. Following are some steps that will help you patting the dog:

  • Ensure your safety and approach the dog
  • Once the dog is comfortable with you, pat gently and slowly
  • Stroke the chest or head with a soft hand
  • Do not tighten your grip
  • Once you are done treating the dong
  • Move away slowly
A German Shepard puppy being patted

Avoid patting the dog in case it has any injury on the head or chest. Take care of the dog’s comfort as much as you can.

Different Types of Patting The Dog

Patting the dog of different sorts. Let us find out about patting the different types of dogs. 

Patting the friendly dog

It is always safe to pat the dog which is friendly and loving. But it should be kept in mind that your behavior can alter the mood of the dog. If it is your first encounter with the dog, make sure that you are relaxed and it is evident from your body language as well. Just approach the dog in a relaxed manner and pat it gently.

A puppy happily being patted

Patting the stray dog

Always be safe first, then approach a stray dog. Stray dogs are often unpredictable and can cause serious injuries. It is advisable to make sure of your safety and approach then approach the dog. Calmly reach the dog, and never look directly into its eyes, dogs consider it as a threat and an invitation to a fight.

Patting your dog

As a pet owner, you are familiar with your dog’s nature and you know what it needs exactly. Avoid patting or wrapping up your dog when it’s injured or not well, this might create disturbance for your dog. 

Always stroke the dog gently and offer it a treat to encourage positive behavior. Patting in some cases can also act as a treat as it shows concern and appreciation of the owner to its pet.

Patting The Dog With Your Fingers

You can pat the dog with your fingers but you should make sure that your don hurt the dog in any way. Make sure to ensure your safety first if the dog is unknown to you. Once you start patting the dog, your fingers should not irritate its skin.

Your nails should be trimmed. You must not pat the dog with a tight grip. Pat the dog carefully, especially in case of injuries or operation. Don’t touch the injured area of the dog and pat it with love and concern, dogs always get your inventions.

Patting The Dog on The Head

Dogs don’t always love when you pat their heads. Some dogs can perceive it as a threat and can act out harshly. If a dog can not see what’s coming towards it, the dog can get frightened and alert. This activates the fight mechanism in the dog and it tends to fight the person patting its head, which can have some undesired consequences.

Some breeds such as labs and huskies are very friendly when kept with care and affection. They don’t tend to oppose the patting on their heads. Patting the dog on the head should be avoided if there are certain head injuries on the head. 

Do not pat the head of the dog forcefully, your dog is a breathing organism and has a right to show its consent, anything that can affect the comfort of the dog should be avoided.

Patting the Dog Reduces Stress

It has been medically proven that patting the dog helps you reduce your stress and anxiety. When you pat the dog and it responds affectionately, your body senses a warm and strong bond building up with the dog. The dog also feels the same way and lets you do the patting. 

In some countries, therapy dogs are used in colleges and hospitals. The sole purpose of the dogs is to be patted by the students or the staff for several minutes. It was seen that it helped the students to manage their stress as well as the staff of the hospital to work in a relaxing environment.

Now you know what is patting and how patting the dog is an affectionate act. It should be kept in mind that your safety comes first, that is why it is advisable to reach the dog safely and then pat it gently.

Why is patting important?

Patting is important for your dog. If you do not pet your dog when it does something good, it considers it as a negative experience and avoids doing things it generally does for you. Patting the dog makes it happy and encourages its positive behavior. It also makes your bond stronger with your pet. Regular and affectionate patting makes your dog fall in love with you. All your dog needs from you are time and affection and that’s what patting the dog does. Patting the dog elevates its mood and proved to be therapeutic in case of stress or anxiety of the dog.


We discussed everything about patting the dog in this article. We also discussed the right ways to pat the dog as well as different types of patting.

Feel free to ask anything about patting the dog in the comment section below.

FAQs Patting the dog

Frequently asked questions about patting the dog.

Do dogs like to be patted?

Generally, dogs don’t like to be patted. But if you and your dog are attached, patting is the best way to make your bond stronger along with the other activities such as playing and giving it treats.

Where can I pat my dog?

Pat your dog around-ear, gently below its mouth and on its belly and chest. Do it where your dog feels most comfortable. Don’t continue patting if your dog moves away from you. Do not make the dog uncomfortable, let it come to you when it wants.

Do dogs like it when you kiss them?

Some dogs like it when you kiss them, especially your pet dog. It depends upon the familiarity of the dog with the person as well. Most dogs allow kissing only by the people they trust. Don’t approach the dog without safety measures, in case if it is a stray or someone else’s dog.

How do you know if a dog is happy?

To find out if your dog is happy or not look at his tails and ears, if the dog lifts and wags its tail and ear with excitement and circles around you, it means it is happy and wants to play with you. A dog can also wag its tail when scared but that is usually seen with low excitement.

Do dogs like belly rubs?

Dogs love belly rubbing. When you rub the belly of your dog it feels relaxed and happy. The brain of the dog gets stimulated and sends impulses to the hair follicles that give a soothing effect. If your dog offers its belly to you that means it trusts you.


Leave a Comment