Why Do Dogs Put Their Head Between Your Legs? + What Can You Do

Why Do Dogs Put Their Head Between Your Legs

Dogs love burying their head between the legs of people.

While it is adorable, have you ever wondered why?


There are many reasons why your dog may be burying their head between your legs, some may be a cause for concern while others may not.

Read on to find out some reasons why your dog might be putting their head between your legs and what you can do about it.


Separation Anxiety

One reason why your dog may be doing this is due to separation anxiety.

Separation anxiety is when dogs are left alone for too long.

This prospect results in them being increasingly anxious.


Dogs develop separation anxiety as they have a natural tendency to stick in a pack.

This means that they are always following someone and is never alone. Thus, wherever you go, he will follow.


Separation anxiety may be likely especially if your dog tends to be your shadow, following you wherever you go.

And when you leave them alone for a long time, they feel unnatural, developing anxiety.



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To Spread Its Scent

Another reason is for them to spread their scent on to you.

This is also known as scent marking and is a common behavior in all dogs.

They tend to do this to mark the presence and to claim the territory of an area.

Dogs do this so other dogs will not approach you as a form of protection.

This is seen in dogs who are highly protective of their owners, tending to bury their head in you when near others.



puppy hiding between owner's legs

Your dog may be burying their head between your legs as they are fearful.

This is typically so when the situation they are in is uncomfortable to them — such as when there are loud noises outside or other animals around.

This may mean that something is causing them to be fearful.


If you notice this happening, you may want to take note of the current environment to find out what is making your dog act that way.

They may also be doing this to feel safer from the situation.


Finding the Cause

If you notice your dog acting this way, it is important that you find the cause of why they are doing so.

Reasons, why they may be having this reaction, will vary from anxiety to excitement.

This action may also show that they are trying to seek closeness or protection from you.

They may be overwhelmed or uncomfortable — it is important that you observe the situation and act accordingly.


When finding out the cause of this action, you can also consider things that happened before they started doing this.

If it happened suddenly, it may be due to a sudden change in the situation.

Observing your dog’s body language can also help to understand their actions.

If they are relaxed when between your legs, it most likely means that they are affectionate or comfortable.

However, if they show signs of anxiety, it means they are uncomfortable.


What Can You Do About It?

dog hiding between owner's legs

If you notice your dog constantly burying its head between your legs, you should find the root cause of it.


There are also a few ways in which you can deal with this behavior.


1. Do Not Encourage This Behavior

You can train your dog to change his ways by training them to avoid this behavior.

This can be done especially when your dog does this out of habit.

Change this behavior by not encouraging them when they go between their legs, even when they are nervous.

Praising them when they feel anxious or nervous will only encourage this behavior.

Instead, you should be patient with them and encourage them to get out of their comfort zone.


2. Remove Them From The Uncomfortable Setting

If they are fearful in a particular situation, resulting in this behavior, it may be best to remove them from the situation.

Try limiting the reasons as to why they are acting this way.

This means calming them down, whether it be through walks or food, before letting them re-enter this situation.


3. Distract Them

When they bury their head between your legs, you can also distract them and redirect their focus.

This can be through giving them toys or bones to get them out of this habit.

Remember that encouraging them during this behavior will only cause them to do it more often.

Remove them from particular situations to let them lay down will also help to distract them.


Once you have figured out the root cause of this behavior, you will be able to deal with this behavior better, training them to stop.

A way of training them to stop can be to ignore them when they attempt to get between your legs and praise them when sitting elsewhere.

Remember to encourage good behavior too.

While training them may be hard, you can always consult a trainer to help encourage or discourage particular behaviors.


Concluding Thoughts

Overall, there are many causes as to why your dog may be burying their head between your legs.

They may need reassurance in a situation or wanting to be playful.

It is important that you know why your dog is behaving the way that he is.

While this behavior may be them showing you that they are happy, it may also show them as anxious.

Knowing the reasons why they are behaving as such will help you to overcome the situation.


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A pet owner who loves to share useful facts and information about a variety of animals.