why does my dog push his head against me

Yes, it is quite familiar for a dog owner to ask why does my dog push his head against me. You may have seen your dog pressing his against you all of a sudden when you are relaxing or busy with your chores. It is the fact that a dog can communicate with you in several ways, one of which is a dog pressing head against me. The primary reason behind this is that it’s the way to show their affection and gesture towards you.

Sometimes there may be a possibility that your dog is in some sort of anxiety and stress. Hence you might need your help. Below are some of the common reasons behind such an act of your pal.

What’s head Pressing?

“Head Pressing of dogs” in simple terms means a pet that stands close to any hard surface such as walls, furniture, or even you and starts pressing his head against the surface.

Reasons behind why does my dog push his head against me Form of Greeting:

Different breeds of dogs have different ways of greeting their owners. Some dogs even show their bums to their owner as a form of respect or greeting, while some other dogs may simply lick their owner. So in case, your dog is pressing his head against you, it simply means that he is glad to meet you.

Perhaps he is Marking You:

The face of the dog possesses scent glands, and when he presses his face to leave his scent on you. That simply means that he thinks that you are part of his territory and hence marks you for the same. This does not mean that he loves you. It can also be considered as dominance from his side. In the long run, such dominance should not be encouraged as it develops aggressiveness in dogs.

Offering you Support:

Dogs are capable enough to read their owner’s minds. They can easily sense your happiness and depression. In case you are depressed or feeling lonely, dogs can push head his head against you to offer their Support? It is their way to say that they are there with you in your difficult times. In such cases, you can admire your dog for his love and Support towards you.

why does my dog push his head against me

Perhaps he needs something:

Sometimes the answer to why does my dog rub his face on me is they require something. Maybe he needs a walk or something to eat. It is also a possibility that they want to spend time with you. Dogs are so clever that they know how to drag your attention towards them.

Simply an Itch:

One of the simplest reason behind why does my dog push his head against me is perhaps they might be having an itchy face at that moment. Since you are his only special, he is just asking you to help him scratching his itchy face.

Wants attention:

Licking, jumping, sitting, and pressing the head are some of the common symptoms when a dog wants your attention. You should know the fact that dogs are social animals and need special care and attention to keep them happy.

Perhaps you are encouraging such behavior:

You may be unknown by the fact that you might be the actual reason behind such an act of your dog. You may start to play or love your dog as soon as he presses his head against you. By this, the dog understands that it is the only way to get your attention. So, if you continue doing that in the future, you may expect a similar act of your dog more often.

Some Medical Reasons Behind why does my dog rub his face on me

Some experts revealed that head pressing in dogs also indicates some health problems in them. There are several diseases for which the head pressing of your dog can be considered as its symptoms. The common one is hepatic encephalopathy which is a condition of liver disease in your pet. 

As we know, the liver removes toxins from our blood. When the liver does not work properly, toxins such as ammonia are built up that generates symptoms of head pressing in dogs. Such liver disease is hereditary and may pass to the offspring from their parents. Apart from head pressing, other symptoms of liver disease include Jaundice, lethargy, weight loss, and mental dullness. Similarly, other diseases that compel a dog for head pressing are-

1. Hydrocephalus(which is an occurrence of water in the brain)

2. Tumor in the brain

3. Vascular or strokes condition in the brain

4. Any type of traumatic conditions present in the brain

Should You Encourage Such Behavior in Dogs?

It depends on the owner of the dog whether to cease such behavior in your dog. If you feel that your dog’s head presses you only due to love, then you can continue their activities. But in case you feel that your dog does it for territorial reasons, then such an act should be stopped. Providing the proper training, escaping from the scene, or teaching them the “leave it” command can be suitable ways to stop the head pressing of your dog. Make sure that you train them with patience and never scold them for such reasons as it may increase the stress in your dog.

 Other ways through Which Dogs Show Their Love Towards Their Owners:

Love is a complicated emotion both for humans as well as for animals. Dogs do possesses several emotions, one of which is their love and affection towards their owner. But their ways of expressing their love are different from that of us. When a canine shows their affection, it is forever unconditional and pure. Apart from pressing their head against their owner, here are some other ways by which dogs show their love towards you-

Following You:

why does my dog push his head against me

As mentioned earlier that dogs are social animals and love to be in a group. They want to spend quality time with their loved ones. The traits of the early ancestors of dogs are still present in the DNA of your dog. One such trait is following their leader.

As you are their owner, they consider you as their leader and thus follow you wherever you go. It is their one of the way to show their love and respect towards you.

Wagging of Tail:

Nearly one has noticed dogs wagging their tails. Such wagging of tails may have several reasons behind it. One of the obvious ones is that the dog is happy to see you. In case you see your dog’s tail held at the right side of their body, that means that your dog is happy and comfortable with your company. 

Cuddling and Leaning:

Touch is one of the important events for both animals and humans, especially to the person whom you love and care so are the dogs. Your dog loves to touch and feel you get comfortable. Some dogs even lay on your neck or feet to feel secured. You must never push them away or get away from the scene as this may make them depressed and increase their anxiety level. Such moments are a moment of love, and one should enjoy with their buddy.

Nosing, Licking, and Grooming:

Kissing dogs is again a way of showing their affection towards their owners. Such behavior is carried out from the ancestral breeds of dogs when they lick their group members and also their puppies. Some dogs also express their affection by nosing your body which usually means that they are happy to see you and are craving for your attention.

why does my dog push his head against me

Chewing the Owner’s Stuff:

Dogs usually chew, play, or sleep on their owner’s stuff. This is because your things have our scent, and dogs feel happy and secured by keeping your scent around them, especially when you are not with them. 

Wrestling with the Owner:

You may have seen dogs do wrestle and play rough with other dogs right from their puppy stage. It is also one of the ways to create bonding with their siblings, and in this case, it is you. Dogs love to play with their owners and can get rough and can even bite their owners during playing too. These all acts also indicate a dog’s love towards its owner.

Smiling and Jumping:

why does my dog push his head against me

Scientists have found out that both dogs and humans use the same muscles to show their gestures and emotions. A smile of a dog is fixed for the person he loves and cares for. Dogs also show their affection towards their owner by jumping playfully over them. You may get annoyed by such an act, but it is the way by which your pal says that he is happy to see you.

Eye Contact:

Every dog wants to be with their family. It is because they are a social animal and does not like to be alone. From your pal’s point of view, you are the only person in their life and also his leader. He looks at you for your love, approval, care, affection, and companionship. If you are getting such looks from your dog, then perhaps you should be happy and lucky to have him. Receiving a stare or holding an eye from your dog also strengthens the bonding between you.

 Do you know the fact that such gazing into the eyes increases a chemical in the brain called oxytocin, also called a love hormone in both animals and humans? Thus if your dog makes eye contact with you, then he is looking for your guidance and attention.

To Show their Loyalty:

At last, all the above gesture simply proves his loyalty to you, and you must appreciate all such gestures of your dog. Spending time with your dog and caring for his needs will make the bond of love between you even better.

Some Common FAQs:

QUE: Should You Stop Your Dog Burying Their Head In You?

ANS: It is not at all necessary to stop your dog from burying his head against you, as their main intention is to show love and respect towards you. But if you feel dominance or aggressiveness from your dog’s side, then you should try to stop such behavior through proper training.

QUE: Why Does My Dog Lay His Head Over My Neck?

ANS: It is one of the ways of your dog to show his love and affection towards you. Apart from this, jumping, staring, kissing, and licking are also some of the ways y which dogs show their affection to their owners

QUE: Why your dog presses its head into you?

ANS: There can be several reasons why does my dog rub his face on me. Some of the common ones are to show their love, affection, anxiety, depression, and health-related issues.

QUE: Should You Allow This Behavior?

ANS: It depends on you whether you want such behavior of your dog. You can use positive enforcement training to stop such habits in your dogs.

QUE: What does head pressing in dogs mean?

ANS: Head pressing in dogs generally means that your dog is happy to meet you and wants to spend some quality time with you. Sometimes certain health issues in dogs, such as liver malfunction and brain tumor-related issues, also compel a dog to press its head against any hard surface. It is you who has to understand the need of your dog and consult the vet if such head pressing is due to any medical issue.

I hope that now you are aware of the possible reasons why does my dog push his head against me. It is you who have to decide whether to continue such behavior in your dog or oppose it. You can train them calmly to avoid such behavior in case you are not comfortable with it. The best option is to spend some quality time with your dog daily and keep them engaged in curbing such behavior in your pal.