why do dogs paw at you?
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Thread: why do dogs paw at you?

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    Member dog dandy darcie's Avatar
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    Question why do dogs paw at you?

    My dog has a funny little quirk that can be annoying. She takes her paw and swats your arm, chest, and face when you're sitting or lying down. I think it's for attention,but I'm not sure. I haven't really seen any info. on the quirky behavior. Anyone know why they do it?

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    LMH
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    That's why they do it - to be annoying! haha. My dog does it to get mud on my pants when were outside. he also does it to leave nail marks and scratches on my arms. Other than that I don't know why they do it. Can you tell i'm a bit touchy when it comes to this subject.

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    Senior Member Dana1384's Avatar
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    Zoe does it too, It is like sometime she just wants you to hold her hand. I think it is attention thing myself because if I am not petting her enough she will do it, and if I ignore it she will leave marks on me.

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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    Cassie does it to me. She's always gentle though. She'll come on the couch and raise her paw, grab my hand, and PULL it to her chest. Which is her favorite place for a scratch. When I stop, she'll pull me back over and over again until I say enough.

    Not recommended for big dogs though. Cocoa our 78 lb lab was playing with me on the floor one day and got me in the eye with her nail.

    My whole eye turned red with blood and looked terrible for 2 weeks. Except for the first 20 mins it didn't hurt. I was really scared at first. I thought she'd blinded me.

    (in order left to right) Cookie, Pepper, Sam , Mr. Bojangles , Cocoa, Ginger , Cassie

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  6. #5
    LMH
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrissyBz View Post
    Cassie does it to me. She's always gentle though. She'll come on the couch and raise her paw, grab my hand, and PULL it to her chest. Which is her favorite place for a scratch. When I stop, she'll pull me back over and over again until I say enough.

    Not recommended for big dogs though. Cocoa our 78 lb lab was playing with me on the floor one day and got me in the eye with her nail.

    My whole eye turned red with blood and looked terrible for 2 weeks. Except for the first 20 mins it didn't hurt. I was really scared at first. I thought she'd blinded me.
    OUCH! that is scary. My dog is very big and I get very irriated that he's always sticking him big paw out to me. he give me marks on my legs too. He's beating me up-haha.

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    Junior Member JoJo181's Avatar
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    Well im a little confused;
    My dog will sometimes randonly come up to me & just do a digging thing with his front paws.. at my legs, feet & arms & give a lil growl then immideitly put his head down..

    as if MOMMY GIMMIE MORE ATTENTION!GUR.

    Is that what you meant? Or a more gentle version? LOL

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    Senior Member chul3l3ies1126's Avatar
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    A dog trainer I know and an Animal Behaviourist at my college say that it is about dominance and they are trying to claim you. Even if it is gentle... they are saying that they are in charge and you belong to them. My dog trainer always tries to deter the dogs from doing that in order to establish respect first lol but it is cute.
    Nessa

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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    Quote Originally Posted by LMH View Post
    That's why they do it - to be annoying! haha. My dog does it to get mud on my pants when were outside. he also does it to leave nail marks and scratches on my arms. Other than that I don't know why they do it. Can you tell i'm a bit touchy when it comes to this subject.
    You are very wise.

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    Senior Member Shaina's Avatar
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    Kim used to do it all the time...for the first couple months I always had scratch marks on my hands, arms, legs (it was summer), and once on my face. I taught her to do it on command "shake" (left front) and "paw" (right front), and would stop playing anytime she did it outside of being asked. She stopped doing it (for the most part) to people now, but she does it to other dogs all the time...still trying to figure out how to stop that one.

    Kim used to do it all the time...for the first couple months I always had scratch marks on my hands, arms, legs (it was summer), and once on my face. I taught her to do it on command "shake" (left front) and "paw" (right front), and would stop playing anytime she did it outside of being asked. She stopped doing it (for the most part) to people now, but she does it to other dogs all the time...still trying to figure out how to stop that one.

    She's "pawsy" in general though...uses them to bat toys around, clean her face, etc...I swear my dog's a cat.
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    Meghan does it for fries.....
    I think its an attention getter for some.....
    for several of my dogs they just want to touch you.... and they will put their foot on you and rest it there....
    s

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    Senior Member lovemygreys's Avatar
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    I don't think it has anything to do with dominance. It's a learned behavior. Using paws is a natural way to learn about their environment. Consequently, they learn early as pups that swatting/batting at littermates and momma gets them attention.

    They also very quickly learn that pawing at humans also gets them attention. Basically, it's a conditioned behavior. Our dogs have learned that pawing us, esp our face, does not work to get them anything and they learn to stop doing it.
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    Senior Member Roscosmom's Avatar
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    Harlie is a 'paw'er'. Well, more like a stab and drag'er ..by all means one of her worst qualities. It's nice to have her near me in a chair but she can barely control the pawing and at times it really ticks me off so I just shoo her away. Or I let her know via griping how much I hate it and she *tries* to control it, but then she starts that lip licking thing that she does when she's trying to have self control I love her dearly but she has issues, lol.

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    Senior Member digits mama's Avatar
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    Puddles does it because its her way of telling me it is time to play or go for a walk.

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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    When I actually do finally get to sit down at night, Otis is right there, gently putting his huge paw up onto my knee-wanting to play more or wanting scratched. I love it and don't feel that it is a dominance thing at all- just wanting more lovin'- enough is NEVER enough!!! If it was a dominance issue, I don't think he would do it as gently as he does.

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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    When our old girl ginger wants out, she'll rear up on her hind legs and punch us. She's only ten lbs. so she gets away with it.

    (in order left to right) Cookie, Pepper, Sam , Mr. Bojangles , Cocoa, Ginger , Cassie

    Semper in faecemus solum, Sole in profundum variat



  17. #16
    Senior Member Sugar Daddy Otis's Avatar
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrissyBz View Post
    When our old girl ginger wants out, she'll rear up on her hind legs and punch us. She's only ten lbs. so she gets away with it.
    Ha Ha Thats Funny- Thank dog Otis dosen't do that!!!!!!! lol!

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    Member dog dandy darcie's Avatar
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    Well,I'm glad I'm not the only one who has a demanding mutt! lol. I do find it adorable. It's so funny because sometimes my husband will make funny noises or talk in a weird accent and Darcie can't stand it. She puts her paw on his mouth and has the most quixotical look on her face- like she's trying to find the little man in his mouth whose making that sound. Too funny. The only bad thing is she sometimes isn't very gentle!

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    Senior Member digits mama's Avatar
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    LOL that just means she means biznus.

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    Senior Member Shanette Peters's Avatar
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    Quote Originally Posted by dog dandy darcie View Post
    My dog has a funny little quirk that can be annoying. She takes her paw and swats your arm, chest, and face when you're sitting or lying down. I think it's for attention,but I'm not sure. I haven't really seen any info. on the quirky behavior. Anyone know why they do it?
    I thaught at one time it was a dominance issue, and sometimes it can be but for my dog she will first come sit and look at you to get your attention(to be let out to go pee or to get more water) if you don't pay attention right away she will Paw at you. Personally jumping up on a person is more of her dominance than her pawing. I also have seen her Paw when she is stressed or freightened or feeling ill.

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    Super Moderator Curbside Prophet's Avatar
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    Re: why do dogs paw at you?

    There's only one way it can be a dominance issue...if the dog is contesting you with another being. This is so rare that the dog is most likely euthanized for other behavior problems before he could ever contest another being for a human.

    So, if the dog is pawing you, look around, who is he having a contest with? Usually no one. There must be a resource to gain if dominance is ever to be an issue.

    Dogs paw because they want your attention. Dogs paw to ask are we good? I'm ok, you're ok? And dogs do paw with their environment to see what happens.

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