When you get home from work your dog runs at you with excitement. After a pleasant greeting, your dog plops on your feet. Waiting for something. For most dogs, your loyal dog is waiting for an ear rub. But why do dogs like having their ears rubbed?
Ear Rubbing isn’t for Every Dog
Like any dog habits, not every dog loves having their ears rubbed. Like most habits, exceptions exist. But these exceptions are usually bound to breeds. Like some breeds love chase and other breeds prefer tug o war. We know every breed has personality traits, but us dog lovers know that each dog has a unique personality.
This is where ear rubs are unique. It isn’t that some breeds dislike having their ears subbed. It is that some dogs have a unique personality and just do not enjoy the activity. For the most part, having ears rubbed is universally loved.
The only way to know if your dog loves an ear rub is to give it a try. It will be unusual at first, but dogs will not run away. The best description of the feeling that people understand is like having short hair on the back of your head.
It is extra soft and when touched or rubbed it sets your nerves a blaze. Much like a dogs ears being rubbed. My husband loves having the back of his head rubbed with he has short hair. Most men do, some do not. Their is science behind who do dogs like having their ears rubbed.
Why Do Dogs Like Having Their Ears Rubbed
Dogs have a few spots which are loaded with nerves. The biggest nerve are people know of is the belly. Dogs love having their belly rubbed and that is in part due to the belly being full of nerves which when rubbed feels like ecstasy.
The other nerve hub would be the toes. While dogs love having their belly rubbed, they hate having their toes rubbed. This is the bad kind of sensitive. It is a thin line of pain and pleasure. Dogs will only give up their belly when they trust you. Ears are always there for the taking.
Ears are pure nerve hubs. Next to the belly and toes, your dogs do not have as many nerves anywhere else. Having ears rubbed releases nerve impulses to the pituitary and hypothalamus glands. Both glands release endorphins.
Endorphins are pain releasing hormones that will make a dog feel euphoric and relaxed. When you rub your dogs ears, you are giving your best friend a mild high. Humans have many nerve endings in their ears like dogs do.
K9 Acupuncture and acupuncture for people focus on the ears. It allows you and your dog to feel relaxed and many times drift into sleep. Messages are the same way. Your ears are feel good centers. Most dogs love this.
When it Comes to Ear Rubs, Watch out For…
Dogs are more free than people. We fear a knife in the belly, instinctively. Dogs fear a bite in the gut. All animals fear a knife or a bite to the throat as that means death.
If a stranger comes up to your and tries to rub your back, you freak out of bit due to personal space issues but will let the stranger continue most of the time. But if a stranger tries to grab your belly or gran your neck, it is time to panic.
Dogs are the same way. Except dogs do not have the personal space issues we have. Dogs will let you pet their back. The back of their head is questionable. The front of the neck is a dangerous place a dog to let you pet.
Ears are not essential to survival, but your dogs will feel a lot of pain if you get them the wrong way. The other thing to watch out for is the ‘power play’ dog. Some dogs need to be alpha. This type of dog will do what ever it takes to be the boss.
The Type of Dog That Doesn’t Like Their Ears Rubbed
This type of dog often will bark or freak out when you try to touch their head. Often these dogs show dominance by putting their paws on other dogs heads or licking their throats. This is one of the reasons dogs do a little bow for a bigger or more aggressive dog. It protects the neck and also shows submission.
These dogs need to recognize you are the boss to enjoy getting their ears rubbed. Luckily us humans are much taller than most dogs and ear rubbing feels good. After any dog training session, even stubborn dogs will let you rub their ears. Why do dogs like having their ears rubbed? The same reason you do. It feels good!