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Why Do Dogs Put Their Butt on You?

By Aviram K.
Published in Training & Behavior
February 3, 2022
4 min read
Why Do Dogs Put Their Butt on You?
✏️ This article has been reviewed in accordance with our editorial policy.
🏥 The information in this article is not a substitute for professional help.

After months of dreaming, researching, and planning, you’ve done it. You’ve finally brought your new dog home!

Adjusting to having a little four-legged love prancing around the house has been a surprisingly easy experience. But still, there are some things your pup does that leave you scratching your head.

The strangest thing of all? Your dog’s tendency to put his butt on you!

It seems like for every cuddle, nap, and nuzzle, your pup comes in booty first. And it happens so often that you can tell it’s definitely not a coincidence.

You’re not imagining it…he definitely loves doing this! So why?

It’s a normal thing for dogs to put their butts on you. Dogs do this to express their love, respect, and trust in you. Alternatively, your dog may also do this to mark you as their territory or simply because you’ve encouraged their behavior.

In this article, I will delve deeper into the many reasons your dog puts his butt on you and what they all mean.

Ready to find out why your pup seems addicted to keeping his booty as close as possible to you at all times?

Let’s get down to it!

Table of Contents
01
Why Dogs Put Their Butt on You
02
Butt-First Equals a Full Heart

Why Dogs Put Their Butt on You

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If you’ve noticed your dog loves to put his butt on you, you may feel a little funny about the whole thing.

This is understandable!

As a human, if you put your butt on someone, it would have an entirely different meaning (and consequence!) than when your pup does it.

Your dog has no social conditioning about his butt and what it should mean. He is acting purely off of instinct and what feels natural to him.

Dogs say hello and gather tons of information about one another through their backsides! A dog’s sense of smell is 100,000 times more sensitive than a human’s.

To further put this into perspective: only 5 percent of human brains are used for scent detection, while a whopping 30 percent of a dog’s brain is dedicated to this task!

Dogs sniff one another’s butts to determine who is friendly, to establish dominance, and to see who’s ready to mate. They even do it as a stress-management mechanism to calm themselves down.

Now that you understand some of the psychology behind your pup’s backside-first maneuvers let’s explore some of the reasons they may be doing this!

They Trust You

Your dog putting his butt on you puts him in a vulnerable position.

Your pup knows instinctively that his teeth are his most potent weapons if he needs to defend himself or attack. By facing his mouth far away from you, he shows that he knows he doesn’t need to use them on you.

In short, your pup knows that you are his ally, friend, and protector. Definitely not someone he should feel on guard from or suspicious of in any way.

Perhaps the ultimate display of comfort and trust is your dog sleeping with their bum on you. When your dog is sleeping, they are totally unconscious. If they trust you in their most defenseless state, that is precious and says a lot about the rock-solid bond you share.

They Marking Their Territory

Your dog releases pheromones from their anal region.

Each and every dog has these pheromones, which are essentially their unique “brand” that is custom-made for them. A dog’s scent alerts other dogs that they’re around and can even define what belongs to them.

If your pup puts his butt on you, there’s a good chance he’s hoping other dogs take note of his pheromones and keep their distance!

You’ve Encouraged Them to Do It

At the end of the day, your attention is what your pup wants the most. And any attention they can get, positive or negative, will do!

You may be encouraging your dog to put his butt on you if you’ve reacted to your dog by praising them and allowing them to do so.

But you also may be encouraging them to do this if you freak out, complain or try to reposition them.

Frustrating as it may be for you, your dog is likely lapping up the attention. So, he keeps it up!

They Want to Be Rubbed or Scratched

Your dog may be putting his butt on you for a very practical reason: he wants a rubdown!

If your dog knows that putting his butt on you will result in abundant back rubs, massages, and good scratching, he’s probably eager to put himself in this position…over and over again!

And really, can you blame him?

But beware, your pup may be backing it up on you for a scratch because he really needs one, like desperately. He may have fleas, parasites, or allergies that are driving him crazy!

If your dog has any issues going on around his bottom area, you may notice him aggressively putting his butt close to you as if begging to be scratched. And he may even rub his butt on you as a way to scratch the itch himself!

Here are a few other signs to look for if you suspect something could be bothering him “down there”:

  • Small bumps around your dog’s bum
  • Loss of hair in the area
  • Scabs or bloody spots
  • Uneven skin, bites & discharge of any kind

If your pup is putting his butt on you and shows any of the above symptoms, he may be trying to clue you into a bigger issue. It may be time to call the vet and schedule an appointment to get him checked out.

Butt-First Equals a Full Heart

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Dogs can be a trip sometimes! Their little individual quirks, patterns, and habits really do light life up!

But who would have thought that something as random as your dog putting their butt on you could mean so much? Your pup putting their butt on you is a strong sign that they trust you, claim you, and feel completely comfortable with you.

So next time your dog saddles up and puts their butt on you, no need to be confused. They’re telling you loud and clear in their very own way that they adore you.

And that is a beautiful thing indeed!


Tags
Dog Behaviors
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