Dogs have been proven to be beneficial to our health in many ways. They can help lower blood pressure, improve our cardiovascular health, and provide us with emotional support and friendship. Walking a dog also gets us out in the fresh air and helps us to meet new people.
There are, of course, some downsides to owning a dog. They can be expensive, especially if you need to take them to the vet regularly. They also require a lot of time and attention, and they can be destructive if left alone for too long.
No matter the odd behavior, if your dog exhibits it, you need to take the time to learn about why your dog is doing whatever it is he’s doing. It could be a sign of a dangerous medical condition or something else important.
So, what about dogs burying their heads in their owners? Why does my dog bury his head in me? There are a handful of likely reasons that your dog is burying his head in you:
- To get attention
- Showing his love
- Separation anxiety
- Tell you something
- Sick or injured
- It’s comfortable
- To Warm-up
Your Dog Wants Attention
If your dog likes burying his head in you, it could be because he wants some attention. Dogs love attention and especially love it from their owners. By burying his head in you, he’s hoping to get some belly rubs or behind-the-ear scratches.
Your Dog Is Scared Of Something
All bark no bite is a popular saying for a reason. Though he might look and act big and tough, when it comes down to it, many dogs are big wimps. If your dog is burying his head in you, he might be scared of something and looking for reassurance from you. This could be anything from a loud noise outside to another animal in the house.
Your Dog Wants To Show You His Love
Another common reason your dog is burying his head in you is that he’s trying to show you how much he loves you. Dogs are very affectionate animals that show their love in many ways, including burying their heads in the people they care about.
Your Dog Is Anxious When You Leave
If your dog is anxious or stressed when you leave him alone, he might bury his head in you as a way of trying to keep you from leaving. This is a form of separation anxiety and it’s something you’ll need to work on with your dog if you want him to feel more comfortable when you’re not around.
Your Dog Is Trying To Tell You Something
Dogs are very good at communicating their needs, but sometimes we just don’t understand what they’re trying to tell us. If your dog is burying his head in you, he might be trying to tell you that he’s hungry, thirsty, or needs to go outside.
More than likely though, he’s trying to communicate something he doesn’t need to tell you very often. This is why he’s experimenting with a new way to get you to notice he needs something. Pay attention to his body language and see if you can figure out what he’s trying to say.
Your Dog Is Sick Or Injured
If your dog is suddenly burying his head in you or acting differently in any way, he could have a new injury or illness. Dogs will sometimes behave differently when there is a major change in their health. He could be sick or injured and trying to tell you that he needs help.
Don’t scare yourself though, as you can see, there are many other reasons your dog could be burying his head in you. If you want, you can err on the side of caution and take him to the vet.
Another reason your dog might be burying his head in you is that it’s comfortable. Dogs like to curl up in tight spaces, but if that isn’t possible, you might just be the perfect spot for a little nap. If your dog is burrowing his head in you while he sleeps, it’s probably because he’s comfortable and feels safe with you.
If your dog is like most, he hates being cold. When it’s chilly, your dog might start burying his head in you to stay warm. If your dog is cold, he’ll likely push the envelope as far as you will let him. He’ll burrow under the blankets or into your lap to get warm.
Is It Okay For My Dog To Bury His Head In Me?
Whether or not it is okay for a dog to bury his head in his owner depends on the reason the dog is doing it. If your dog is frightened of something, suffering from anxiety, or has a medical condition that is causing him to bury his head in you, then you definitely treat the problem.
You don’t want your dog to have a lower quality of life, especially if whatever is bothering them is treatable or preventable.
If your dog is burying his head into you for a different reason, like to get some loves, then yes, it is okay for your dog to do it. Whether or not you’re okay with it is something totally different though.
Personally, I don’t mind when our dogs show me a little love by burying their head in me. My partner on the other hand hates it. Not because my partner dislikes the dogs, but because my partner prefers clothes that aren’t covered in dog hair.
How Do I Stop My Dog From Burying His Head In Me?
The important thing to remember when training your dog to do anything, like not burying his head in you, is to be consistent. As I mentioned above, I don’t mind my pups doing it but my partner hates it.
So, we both need to discourage the behavior for our dogs to understand they aren’t allowed to do it. If one person allows something and another doesn’t, you’ll be more likely to confuse your dog than to train them to behave appropriately.
First, determine why your dog is burying his head in you. That will help you determine which of the methods I’m about to go over will work best for your situation.
Train Your Dog To Understand ‘No’
The ‘no’ command isn’t just useful for when you want your dog to stop burying his head in you. It’s a versatile command that can be used in many different situations.
If you want to train your dog not to bury his head in you, start by saying ‘no’ every time he does it. Be sure to say it in a stern voice but don’t yell and get angry. If he doesn’t listen the first time, try again.
You can also try putting your hand on his head and gently pushing him away from you as you say ‘no’. If he still doesn’t listen, you might need to get a little more assertive. Try saying ‘no’ and then moving him away from you with your hands or body.
Use Positive Reinforcement
Positive reinforcement is a great way to train your dog to do (or not do) just about anything. If you want your dog to stop burying his head in you, try rewarding him when he doesn’t do it.
For example, if he comes over to you and doesn’t bury his head, give him a treat or some head scratches. You can also try giving him a treat or playing with him for a few minutes. He’ll quickly learn that he gets something good when he listens and doesn’t bury his head in you.
Discourage The Behavior With Negative Reinforcement
Negative reinforcement is when you remove something the dog wants after they perform a behavior you don’t want. For example, if your dog comes over to you and starts to bury his head, turn away from him or get up and walk away.
Removing yourself from the situation as it is happening is the only negative reinforcement that will likely see results. He’ll soon learn that he doesn’t get the attention he wants when he tries to bury his head in you and will be less likely to do it.
If you take your dog’s favorite toy, refuse a treat or withhold something else from your dog, he likely won’t know why you did it and will just be confused.
Distract Your Dog With A Toy
If your dog is getting ready to bury his head in you, try distracting him with a toy or treat. When your dog is approaching you in the way he normally does when he is about to bury his head into you, give him a toy. Once he’s focused on the toy, praise him for being a good boy.
This method works best if you do it before he starts to bury his head in you. If you wait until he’s already doing it, he may be too focused on what he’s doing to be distracted by a toy.
Provide An Alternative Behavior
If your dog likes to bury his head in you when you’re sitting on the couch, try providing an alternative behavior. For example, you can train your dog to lay down next to you or at your feet.
Don’t Encourage Him
Whatever you do, don’t encourage your dog to bury his head in you. If you do, he’ll think it’s something you want him to do and will be more likely to do it. If your dog thinks you’re praising him or enjoying his head buried in you he’ll keep doing it.
Even if you don’t mean to, things like laughing, petting, or talking in a sweet voice to your pooch can all encourage your dog to keep burying his head in you. So, be aware of how you’re reacting when your dog does it.
Training your dog not to bury his head in you will take time and patience. Don’t get frustrated if he doesn’t seem to be getting the message right away. Just keep at it and he’ll eventually learn what you want him to do.
Wrapping It Up: Why Do Dogs Bury Their Heads In People?
It might seem like a curious behavior, but there are actually a number of reasons why dogs do this. One reason is that they are seeking attention. If your dog knows that he gets a lot of love and affection when he snuggles up close, he’ll be more likely to do it often.
Another reason might be that your dog is scared. If he’s feeling anxious or stressed, he may bury his head in an attempt to feel safe and secure. Additionally, some dogs do this as a way of showing their love.
For many dogs, burrowing close to their favorite humans is a sign of affection. Separation anxiety can also be a factor; if your dog starts burying his head when you come back home, it’s likely that he’s feeling anxious about being away from you.
If your dog is trying to tell you something and hasn’t figured out how to yet, he may try burying his head in you.
Finally, dogs may also bury their heads if they’re sick or injured. If your dog suddenly starts burying his head more frequently, it’s worth taking him to the vet to rule out any health issues.
So next time you catch your furry friend with his head buried in your lap, take a moment to think about what might be motivating him.
If your dog is doing this behavior and it’s something you don’t want him to do, there are a few things you can try to stop it.