plus minus cross arrow-left arrow-right arrow-bottom cart dropdown-arrow next previous heart search tick amazon-payment amex bitcoin cirrus diners-club discover dk dogecoin facebook fancy forbrugsforeningen apple-pay google-plus instagram interact jcb litecoin maestrooo mastercard paypal pinterest stripe tumblr twitter vimeo rss visa youtube lock video-play bird cat dog fish reptile small-pets loyalty-programme price-match free-shipping

Is Your Dog a Leaner?

Posted on March 22 2022

Is Your Dog a Leaner?

Hey Team, Ryan & Co here again!

Picture this, It's a friday evening, things are winding down for the week, you’re settling down onto the couch, and your dog cruises over. He leans his ribs against your knees, sighs, and stands there. Is this a common occurrence for you & your k9? For Co & I, this hits home, in-fact when we first met Co before we rescued him, a deciding factor to adopt him was when Co sat on my lap when i sat on the floor next to him. Love at first lean, or something like that! But why do dogs lean? In this blog, we dive into what causes a k9 to go to leany town. 

We All Need Somebody to Lean On: Why Do Dogs Lean On Their Humans?

Dogs lean on their humans for several main reasons. It’s a totally normal behavior, usually related to attention-seeking. Basically, your dog is trying to subtly (or not-so-subtly) get something from you! Let’s explore some of the underlying reasons that your dog leans on you.

1. Warmth

Yup!, even with all their fur, dogs get cold sometimes, My boy Co is of athletic build, so when the days / nights are colder, then youll find him leaning on another humans legs for some added warmth. 

2. Comfort

Dogs take comfort in being physically close to their loved ones. Even when my boy and I have the whole house to ourselves, he tends to park right under my chair or next to my chair. Shy dogs especially may lean on their owners for comfort when they’re nervous or anxious. When Co was younger, he had some pretty crazy separation anxiety, and the leaning has stuck since we rescued him. Sometimes when his mum leaves for work, hell find me and lean hard against me while looking outside longingly for his mum to come back. Dogs are social animals, and we’ve bred them for thousands of years to want to be close to us, so this is to be expected, especially for some breeds. 

3. To Get You to Move

Dogs that lean on you in order to steal your spot on the couch might need some help learning other ways to get what they want. If your dog is constantly encroaching on your space in order to get you to move, it might be time to change some rules around the house. 

4. To Ask for Something

Some dogs lean to ask for dinner, playtime, petting, or to go outside. Similar to dogs that lean on you to get you to move, these dogs might need a bit of training or management to minimize the obnoxious behavior.

How to Reduce Your Pooch’s Leaning

Getting bad huh?!  If your dog is a needy leaner and it’s starting to bother you, it’s time to change a few rules in the house. The good news: this problem isn’t hard to fix, and it’s likely not a huge deal to get right immediately! 

Below is an easy little trick we recommend to help you with your leany dog. 

Stop rewarding the Lean

Stop giving your dog what he wants when he leans. Period. If your dog is leaning to ask for petting, games, or taking your couch cushion, you need to stop rewarding this behavior. 

Your dog is currently using leaning on you as a way to get what he wants. That’s fine, but if it’s bothering you, you must stop rewarding him for doing it! He may try to double down on the lean – he may lean more often, longer, or harder before giving up, so be aware, and be firm. 

Instead of giving your dog what he wants, when he leans on you, wait for him to stop leaning, and then call him over. Give him what he was asking for (whether that’s food, playtime, a toy, etc)- but on your terms! If he leans, barks, or paws at you for attention, ignore him. When he finally gives up, then you can pet him, play a game, or go for a walk.

Make the training easier, with our range of dog treats at Pet Connect NZ 

Buy some treats for your leany pooch here!


Leave a comment

All blog comments are checked prior to publishing

Recent Posts