We'll also provide tips on how to discourage dogs from rubbing against the couch, if necessary.
So, next time you see your dog rubbing up against the couch, don't be alarmed. It's just one of their many ways of communicating with you and the world around them.
Why Do Dogs Rub Against the Couch?
Watching my dog rubbing himself on the couch is almost always a very funny moment, as the faces they usually make when they do it are the funniest.
But let's see why they do it!
1. After a bath
It never fails: just bathe them and dry them, and as soon as we let them go (or they escape from our hands), they run to rub against the floor, the walls or the sofa, if they are close to it.
In this case, the reasons are twofold, although they are related.
For one thing, dogs do not like synthetic odors on their bodies. For them, their natural scent is essential. Therefore, they will run to get rid of artificial odors after a shower.
On the other hand, and related to the above, if the couch is a place where he rubs himself regularly, what he will be doing is trying to recover his own smell.
Logical, isn't it? But there are more reasons!
2. To relieve itching
This is one of the few reasons why a dog rubs against the couch that should concern us.
If your dog is going through an allergic process in his skin, dermatitis or has parasites, it is quite likely that he rubs very often against the couch to relieve the itching.
If this is the problem, it won't be difficult to identify it, since in addition to rubbing, he will scratch a lot, lick himself, have redness on his skin, sneeze... It will depend on the exact cause, but he will have more symptoms than just rubbing.
Check his body and coat very well to find the source of the problem and go to a veterinary center for advice on the best treatment to follow.
See Also: How to Housebreak a Puppy
3. For pleasure
Just as we humans love the feel of certain textures on our skin, dogs do the same. That's why your dog might rub himself all over the couch.
But don't we also love to have our backs stroked - they get that satisfying feeling of rubbing against the couch, too!
Think about it, the sides of the head when following the jaw line, behind the ears and the back are places where they appreciate petting, so rubbing those areas against the couch is very pleasurable for them.
4. For happiness
Rubbing against the couch can also be a sign of happiness in dogs. When dogs are happy, they may rub against objects, people, and other animals to show their contentment.
5. To mark their territory
Although cats are much more territorial than dogs in this respect, it can happen that my dog rubs himself all over the couch precisely to leave his scent and mark it as his own.
This usually happens when the couch is new to him or you have recently washed its cover.
6. To remove something from their fur
If your dog has something stuck in their fur, such as a burr or a piece of food, they may rub against the couch to try to remove it.
7. To get your attention
Finally, there is another reason that should not be overlooked.
Although sometimes it bothers us that the dog rubs on the couch, in many other occasions it makes us smile and that leads us to pamper our dog with caresses and nice words.
That's why it can happen that if your dog is bored and wants to get your attention, he starts rubbing himself all over the couch. In that case, don't ignore him!
How to Discourage Dogs from Rubbing Against the Couch
If you're concerned about your dog rubbing against the couch excessively, there are a few things you can do to discourage the behavior:
- Provide your dog with plenty of other ways to scratch and rub, such as by giving them a scratching post or toy.
- Make sure your dog is getting enough exercise and mental stimulation.
- If your dog is rubbing against the couch to get your attention, try to ignore them or redirect their attention to something else.
- You can also try using a deterrent spray on the couch to make it less appealing to your dog.
2. If your dog is rubbing against the couch to mark their territory, you can try cleaning the couch with a vinegar solution to remove their scent. You can also try using a diffuser with calming essential oils to help reduce your dog's anxiety.
3. If your dog is rubbing against the couch for pleasure or happiness, you can try providing them with a variety of other things to rub against, such as a dog bed, blanket, or toy. You can also try playing with your dog more often to keep them entertained and stimulated.
By following these tips, you can help prevent your dog from rubbing against the couch excessively and keep your furniture looking its best.