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How To Pet Your Dog? How to do it?

Knowing where and how to pet a dog to help it relax is essential to your pet’s health. Some situations can cause stress, nervousness or fear, and you won’t always have home remedies on hand to relax him, such as chamomile or environmental pheromones.

For this reason, knowing the points of the body that relax him will allow you to give him peace of mind in complicated situations. Your dog will thank you for these useful massages, because they love to be caressed and pampered. Want to know how to do it? Let’s go!

Reasons to Pet A Dog

Giving your dog a little massage has many benefits for both of us. First of all, it is an activity that you can share together. As the objective is to relax him, you will transmit to each other a feeling of peace, so you will also go out more relaxed.

In addition, during a petting session, your pressure decreases and your body secretes endorphins and dopamine, which are responsible for relieving pain, releasing euphoria and producing satisfaction.

On a daily basis, there are various situations that can cause nervousness or stress in your dog: the sound of cars, spending too much time alone at home, some discomfort or tense situation suffered with other pets, loud noises, etc.

For this reason, petting your dog or getting him used to receiving massages will allow him to free himself from this tension and be more relaxed. You can make it a daily routine, dedicating between 10 and 15 minutes at the end of each day.

How to Pet Your Dog?

Establish a place in the house where you can perform this activity. Ideally, it should be away from noises, such as television and cars. Besides, you and your dog should feel comfortable. A quiet, noise-free room is an excellent option.

Choose an area of the floor with a carpet. If you don’t have one at home, put a clean towel on the floor, you can choose one that you will use for the sessions from now on. It is more effective if you do it after the daily walk, so that it has already drained its energy.

Allow your dog to lie down and perform the caresses using your hands. They shouldn’t be superficial, so dip your hands into the fur, stroking in the same direction it grows, to avoid your fingers getting tangled or pulling annoyingly.

Where to Pet Your Dog to Relax?

Just like you, there are certain places that your dog finds more pleasant to receive a massage or caress. Caressing a dog on its head is a good way to start, go down from there to the spine, the back and end up on the tail, with a running caress.

Repeat this general caress several times before starting with the more localized massages. Following with movements of this type is very useful when your dog is very nervous or shows fear. Also, this technique is effective when you want to stroke a dog to make it sleep.

In the daily routine, it passes from general caresses to massaging areas such as the chest, armpits and chin, making circular movements with the fingers; they should be soft, but constant. Don’t choose places at random, start with the head, go down towards the shoulders, the armpits and continue with the movements on the chest and back; this is also a good time to caress the dog’s belly, only if it feels comfortable.

Finally, you can stroke the paws. Many dogs experience reluctance to have their limbs touched, but this is usually because you do it the wrong way. Start by gently pressing on the thighs, and if you notice they are quiet, try giving them a circular massage near the joints, stretching them a little, but very carefully.

Gently stroke the fingers and leg pads. Finally, run your body through two sequences of general caresses.

What Should We Avoid During Caresses?

You know where and how to pet a dog to make it relax. However, there are also some things to avoid:

* Do not tickle your dog, this is very unpleasant for him.

* Never blow his ears or face.

* Don’t slap him, this only makes him alert.

* Do not press the base of the tail.

* If your dog has a skin wound or a tumor, avoid handling that area.

* Watch your dog’s reactions at all times. If you notice that he is uncomfortable or tense (wagging his tail, crushing his ears, urinating, or pulling his paw away), it is best to stop the massage.

* Avoid hugging him, most dogs interpret it as a sign of threat.

How to Pet an Unfamiliar Dog?

You love dogs and that leads you to want to pet all those you find in the street. However, this can lead to a bite if you are not careful. Follow these steps before petting an unknown dog:

* If the dog is with a person, first ask if you can approach him. If it has no owner, proceed with caution.

* Look for signs of aggression or fear in the dog: body tension, grunts, raised tail, swollen eyes. If it approaches you in these conditions, walk away carefully. Never try to pet a dog that is nervous.

* If the dog is relaxed, bend down until you are at his height, but never do this with stray or aggressive dogs.

* Avoid direct eye contact and talk calmly; avoid shouting and sudden movements.

* In front of a relaxed dog, let him smell your fist, place it near his nose. It is better to do it with a closed hand, so you avoid biting a finger.

* If the dog is relaxed and wags its tail in a friendly way, congratulations! Now you can caress him.

* Do not stroke the top of his head or put your hand on it, concentrate on the base of the ears and chin. If he is still comfortable, you can stroke his back.

* Be attentive to the dog’s reactions and stop the caresses if he is uncomfortable or aggressive.

As a final recommendation, never go near a dog that is eating, it will believe that you are trying to steal its food. Likewise, avoid petting dogs that are tied up or chained up in a yard, this situation generates a lot of stress for them and they develop aggressive behaviors.

This article is purely informative, in we do not have the power to prescribe veterinary treatments or make any kind of diagnosis. We recommend you to take your pet to the vet in case it presents any kind of condition or discomfort.

Originally published at

John Preston

My name is John Preston and I am the man behind Pet180. I have a passion for helping pets parents and inspiring them to care about their pets. Because we care, we share. I enjoy the ever-changing world of web design and front-end development. I can be found writing, designing and developing all sorts of great content.

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