Why Does My Dog Hump Me And No One Else?
No matter how much we love our canine friends, some of them participate in strange behaviors that we don’t always understand.
One of these odd behaviors includes humping other animals and people, with some even humping one person in particular.
Not only can this behavior be incredibly annoying, but it may have us wondering what on earth would cause this habit.
To help you better understand your pup’s incessant humping, let’s discuss this behavior in detail below.
Why Do Dogs Hump Anyways?
While we may just see it as an uncomfortable habit that our pups participate in from time to time, it can actually be quite complex.
Dogs will hump people and other animals for a number of reasons, ranging from an attempt to establish dominance to playful behavior.
Before we discuss the reasons why your dog always humps you, let’s list the the most common factors behind the humping behavior in general.
1.) Asserting Dominance
If a dog is always humping other dogs, this could be an attempt to establish dominance.
Humping can be a method used to establish a dog’s social standing within a group, hoping to show the other pup that they mean business.
Keep in mind that while this is common with dog to dog interactions, this is not as common when dogs interact with humans.
2.) Attention Seeking
If a dog is humping other people or dogs, it could be their way of getting someone’s attention.
Both humans and dogs will often turn to the dog and tell them to stop, which rewards the pup with the attention they were looking for.
It may not be good attention, but some pups don’t care.
If a dog is in a playful mood, they may release their playful energy through humping.
This could be a combination of needing to release their pent up energy, as well as being aware that humping will get their playmate’s attention.
This behavior is especially common for puppies and young dogs, as they haven’t yet learned that the behavior is not appreciated.
Do you know anyone that bites their nails when they are nervous?
Well surprisingly enough, some dogs will hump other dogs or people when they are overcome with nerves.
Repetitive activities can be comforting for an anxious dog, and some furry friends will find relief through humping.
Some dogs will even develop a humping compulsion if the behavior is not corrected early on.
And last, some dogs will hump other dogs and people if they become aroused.
This can be due to being around a dog that is in heat, or even if their owners have been around other dogs recently.
Just the scent of a dog in heat is enough to send some males on a humping spree.
Why Does My Dog Hump Me And No One Else?
Now that you understand that humping in dogs can be due to much more than just arousal, let’s discuss a few of the reasons why your pup seems to target you for their humping activities.
They Know They Can Get Away With It
If your pup has humped you in the past and did not receive a negative reaction, this could be why they continue to do it.
Dogs catch on quickly to who allows them to get away with bad behaviors, and if you are the only one in your home that allows it, it will continue to happen.
If you simply move away from your pup without any stern cues or negative reinforcement, this could be why your pup only humps you.
They Want Your Attention
Does it seem like your pup begins to hump you when you are not offering them your undivided attention?
If this is the case, it may be their way of getting your eyes on them.
As we mentioned above, some dogs will even accept negative attention if it means we will look their way.
If you always have a big reaction each time your dog begins to hump you, this may be their go to attention seeking behavior.
They Are Hyper
Some dogs will have so much pent up energy that they turn to odd behaviors to release it.
If you happen to be the one that is around your dog during their most hyper point of the day, you may fall victim to their subsequent leg humping.
If your dog only humps you when they are overcome with zoomies and restless panting, this could just mean they are incredibly hyper.
They Want To Play
If your pup knows that they can get your attention by humping your leg, they may engage in this behavior if they are ready for play time.
If you give into your dog’s attention seeking behavior each time they want your eyes on them, this may lead to them turning to humping each time they want to hangout with you.
They Smell Other Dogs On You
If you have an intact dog, they may hump you if they ever smell another canine friend on your clothing.
Their sudden humping could be an effort to establish dominance over the perceived threat, or it could be an act of arousal if they are interested in the smell of the other dog.
If your dog only humps you when you have the scent of other pups on your clothing, this may be why.
They Have A Compulsive Behavioral Issue
Many pet parents are surprised to learn that dogs can struggle with compulsive behaviors as well.
This can be anything from excessive paw licking, blanket chewing, and even leg humping.
Repetitive behaviors can be soothing for dogs with underlying anxiety, causing them to turn to this behavior if they are ever overwhelmed.
If your dog seems to hump you relentlessly for no known reason, it may be time to discuss behavioral therapies with your veterinarian.
Do Female Dogs Ever Try To Hump Their Owners?
Many dog owners believe that male dogs are the only ones that hump their owners or other canine friends, but this is not the case at all.
The behavior of humping is much more than just an arousal response for dogs, so female dogs can engage in this behavior for any of the reasons we discussed above.
Female dogs may hump their owners due to excitement, anxiety, dominance threats, attention seeking, and even due to compulsive issues.
How Do I Make My Dog Stop Humping Me?
Nobody wants to deal with a dog that is always humping them or their friends.
Not only is it a strange behavior that you simply want to put an end to, but it can cause injury.
Many of these pups will cling to your leg each time they begin the behavior, causing painful scratches as they slide off.
To help you banish this odd behavior for good, let’s list some of the most effective ways to get your dog to stop humping you.
Address the behavior immediately: Always address the behavior the moment it begins.
If you ignore the habit even once, this may lead to your dog thinking it is an acceptable way to get your attention.
Stand firm: Your pup needs to know from the start that this is not an acceptable behavior.
Be sure to immediately push them off your leg lightly and walk away, showing them that this behavior will not give them the result they are looking for.
Be consistent with your rules: If your dog is only humping you, this could mean that they think they can get away with it on your watch.
It’s important that you always provide the same reaction each time, as this will help them learn that you are not going to back down.
Offer plenty of exercise: Both hyperactivity and anxiety in dogs can benefit from daily exercise, so it’s important to make sure your pup is getting enough of it.
Most dogs need a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise each day, with some active breeds requiring up to an hour.
Neutering/spaying: If you have an intact dog that will not stop humping you, it could be a result of their hormones.
Sterilization can solve a lot of hormonally driven behaviors in dogs, so it’s the best route to explore if your intact dog participates in this behavior.
Reach out to an expert when needed: If nothing seems to keep your dog away from your leg, it may be time to reach out to an expert for help.
If you think this is simply a training issue that your pup is not grasping, you can always contact a dog trainer for assistance.
If you think your dog has developed a compulsive issue, we suggest reaching out to your vet for guidance.
As you can see, the humping behavior in dogs is much more than just an arousal or dominance issue.
The information above can help you get to the bottom of your dog’s constant humping, and help you banish this uncomfortable behavior for good!
My name is Amber. I am a dedicated animal lover that turned my passion into my career. I am a Licensed Vet Tech with 12 years of experience in veterinary medicine, but I recently took my career online to help spread accurate information on animal care. With how vast the online world is, I have a strong desire to ensure that the reader always walks away with helpful pet advice. With the experience I’ve gained from my time in this field, I have been able to travel the world, offering my services to as many animal rescues as I can find. If I am not at my laptop, or back home visiting family, you can find me somewhere in the world, cuddling every furry friend that I can find! More About Us