Why do some dogs love to have their tummies rubbed?

Some types of doggie behavior can be puzzling to us humans. Like, what’s up with the tummy rub? And why are dogs so fascinated with sniffing each other’s butts? 

The belly scratch

Not all dogs like to have their bellies rubbed, but many of those who do really cherish it. There are several theories to why.

Dogs generally don’t show their stomach to other dogs – unless in a sign of submission – and assuming they don’t do it of fear, showing their tummies to us shows trust. The tummy rub becomes a way of bonding.

On top of this, the stomach can be difficult to reach with the paws, and the skin there is sensitive. A good tummy rub with human fingers probably feels better than their own nails.

The butt smelling

If a human was to approach from behind and smell another person’s butt we’d find it peculiar to say the least. In the doggie world, this approach avoids challenging someone by facing them head-on. The tail-end of the dog also gives off pheromones that can be read by other dogs. By sniffing the behind, a dog can learn about sex, reproductive, and social status.

 

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