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What's Your Dog's Love Language?

Updated: May 18, 2021

The five common love languages actually translate quite well to dogs, once you see it from their perspective. No matter what’s going on in the world, we can count on our dogs to be there for us and to love unconditionally. That’s held true for many people throughout the past year. Show your dog the love they deserve and explore all of the ways you can show them how much they mean to you!

According to studies:

  • 80% of dog parents stating that their dog has positively impacted their mental health during the pandemic.

  • 49% saying they got a new dog during the pandemic.

Dogs steal our hearts by offering us unconditional love, much needed companionship, and offering stress relief. They deserve to know how much we love them back!

Do you know your dog’s love language?

Most pet parents think they do, with 88% saying that they know exactly how to tug on their pups’ heartstrings. Let's explore all of the ways your dog loves to give and receive love most. When you're with your pup, try watching their reactions to different ways you offer them love and see which one gets them most excited.

Physical Touch

Most dog owners report that physical touch, including petting and cuddles on the couch, is their dog’s top love language. You can almost always tell when this is a dog's love language by how much physical affection they insist on giving you. From cuddles, kisses, and that insistent paw on your arm, you can confidently say that love is shown.

Quality Time

This is a given for many dogs who not only need attention, but just need to be with you, by your side, under your desk, at your bathroom door 24/7. If you have a stage 5 clinger then, you know. Taking your dog on a walk, for a car ride, playing tug or fetch, or going on a visit to the park can definitely fulfill this love language.


Some pet parents say receiving gifts like toys and treats make their dogs the happiest. If your pup is especially food oriented, then giving them their favorite biscuit may be just the way to their heart. Have a dog who is toy obsessed? Bring home a new one next time you go for a shopping spree. They will be ecstatic.

Acts of Service

This one can seem tough to define. Dogs don't exactly thank us after we pick up their poop. But many dogs may appreciate the service you do for them whether it's brushing their coat, feeding them, or making them feel good with a massage. Especially the seniors, can appreciate the acts of service you do to make their lives more comfortable in old age.

Our dogs are like us in more ways than we may realize, including the core of how they like to give and receive love. Some dogs are all about receiving gifts, and would love nothing more than to go on a mini pet store shopping spree to pick out a new toy and perhaps get a tasty treat or two. Dogs who enjoy quality time above all else can’t wait to play a game of fetch or go on a nice long walk with you. And finally, pups who can never get enough cuddles on the couch or scratches behind the ears are likely most into physical touch. Provide all of these ways to love your pup and see which one they like the most. We promise they'll let you know if you're listening.

Need a pet to love? Visit our Adoptions page to view our current available pets at our adoption centers. Make an appointment to visit us and adopt or attend our adoption events! There are many resources HSNT provides to finding your new best friend. When you rescue a pet, they turn around and rescue you right back.

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Pets and People, Saving Each Other™

HSNT’s mission is to act as an advocate on behalf of all animals and to ensure their legal, moral and ethical consideration and protection; to provide for the well-being of animals who are abandoned, injured, neglected, mistreated or otherwise in need; to promote an appreciation of animals; and to instill respect for all living things.

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