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Study claims that dogs hate hugs—and these pups certainly agree

Sad but true.


Peter Bd

Internet Culture

Posted on Apr 29, 2016   Updated on May 26, 2021, 9:06 pm CDT

Don’t you love coming home after a had a hard day at work and embracing your dog in a big ol’ hug? Well, you should probably stop that—because a new study shows that dogs hate hugs even more than you hate your job.

According to a Psychology Today article making the rounds, “the Internet contains many pictures of happy people hugging what appear to be unhappy dogs. In all, 81.6 percent of the photographs researchers scored showed dogs who were giving off at least one sign of discomfort, stress, or anxiety. Only 7.6 percent of the photographs could rate as showing dogs that were comfortable with being hugged. The remaining 10.8 percent of the dogs either were showing neutral or ambiguous responses to this form of physical contact.” Damn, can this really be true? World: shattered.

To give credence to this study, we asked some dogs how they feel when their owners hug them. The results were telling.

“I literally hate hugs” —Prince Pug

Photo via powerbeephoto/Fotolia | (C) Used with permission

“Being hugged causes me severe stress and anxiety. Can’t humans read my body language when they do this? SMH.” —Daisy

Photo via aralezi/Fotolia | (C) Used with permission

“This Becky needs to ease up on the cuddling” —Becky’s dog

Photo via Christin Lola/shutterstock | (C) Used with permission

When you’re having a good day till you look out the window and see your owner walking toward you with their arms open wide.

Photo via Mark Herreid/Fotolia | (C) Used with permission

But maybe your dog is different. 

Maybe your dog is part of the slim percentage that actually enjoys a tight and loving embrace. Maybe they like it when you hold them close to you in your times of worry. When you don’t let go of them because they’re basically the only thing in this world that loves you unconditionally.

Nah. It’s more likely you’re just annoying them.

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*First Published: Apr 29, 2016, 10:30 am CDT