7 Sweet and Subtle Signs Your Dog Loves You

7 Sweet and Subtle Signs Your Dog Loves You

When pet owners want to express their love, we have lots of ways of doing it—verbal praise, petting, treats, toys or play. Even though they can’t tell you they love you, your dog has many ways of showing her love, too. Here are a few to look for:

  • Contagious Yawning

Humans and dogs are both social animals, and part of social behavior is mimicking the actions or expressions of those around you as an act of unconscious empathy. If you’re talking to someone who smiles, you’re more likely to smile. If they scratch themselves, you might feel your own phantom itch. It’s common knowledge that yawns are contagious behavior between humans, but did you know your dog shares that impulse with people she empathizes with? If your dog yawns when you yawn, that means her emotions and sensations are tied to yours!

  • Looking Directly Into Your Eyes

When your dog looks directly into your eyes, it releases oxytocin, the same neurological chemical that’s released when mothers bond with their babies through touch. The more your dog looks into your eyes, the more closely it bonds with you. A dog who is afraid or disinterested will avoid eye contact.

  • Snuggling After a Meal

Dogs are impulsive creatures, and usually do whatever seems the most important at the time. Most dogs consider eating the most important activity, but if they’ve already eaten, their next move will tell you what’s important to them. If they come over to you to snuggle, that means that you’re their top priority!

  • Wagging From the Hips

Dogs wag their tails for all kinds of reasons, even to indicate fear or distress. And though many people associate tail wagging with canine happiness, it doesn’t always mean that. However, if your dog is wagging with her whole body and shaking her hips back and forth, and her tail is moving leisurely, you’ve got one happy pup!

  • Following You

Unlike humans, most dogs don’t really need or want alone time—why do you think they’re so happy when you get home from work? Dogs want to spend time with their pack, and so if your dog follows you from room to room or sits by your side even when you’re just reading, it’s because she prefers your company to being by herself, which means she feels safe with you.

  • Licking Your Face

In the wild, wolf cubs will lick the face of their mother to signal to them that they’re hungry. This evolutionary habit stuck, and dogs today lick their owner’s faces because they consider them the provider or mother figure. Puppies are more prone to licking faces, but even older dogs have the habit.

  • Sleeping with You

As we’ve said, dogs are pack animals, and in the wild sleeping is a position of ultimate vulnerability, and wild dogs or wolves will sleep closely nestled with their pack for protection. If your dog tries to sleep in your bed—even if you don’t allow it—it means not only that she feels safer with you by her side, but that she’s ready to protect you, too.


Of course, you probably don’t need these indicators to know your dog loves you—she probably shows you every day in dozens of ways! But it can be fun to notice these behaviors and understand their meaning.


At Sarah’s Pet Care, we believe in the subtly of animal emotions and the importance of forming a connection with pets. If you are looking for a pet care provider who will treat your dog as an individual and strive to keep her healthy and happy, look no further! Contact us today to learn more about our services.