Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Dog growling...

  1. #1

    Question Dog growling...

    Hi everyone,
    Hooch growls at me when my face is near his feet, as if he thinks I am going to bite his feet.
    The growl is very short (split of a second) and it looks like he apologises for it immediately by licking me and nuzzling me.
    But I know if I do it again he will growl again.
    He also growls (same behaviour very short and instant apology) if my husband places his feet where they touch Hooch.
    It doesn't happen everytime but if it goes on (my face near his feet etc) or he is in a certain mindframe he will do it.
    He will never bite, not even when he is threatened so I am not worried about that.
    My question is.. is this normal? is this something that needs to be addressed like a dominance issue?
    I assume it is his way of saying "I don't like it" and we try to avoid it.. but sometimes we forget or don't notice and it just happens.

  2. #2


    Is this behaviour something new with Hooch ? Can you pinpoint a time when it started ?

  3. #3


    Well... the feet thing is because I stepped on him when I ran into the bedroom and he was lying on the floor in the dark (I think we both got a heart attack but he didnt cry out or was hurt in any way) god how I feel guilty about it.. but he was always weary of feet, if we touch him in bed under the blanket with our feet he jumps like a spring and moves away, he has always done that.
    The face near the feet - he has always done that.

  4. #4


    If you stepped on his foot – then he is reacting to the fright and the pain involved. Pups don't forget – sorry to say. Is he limping at all ?

    Is this more noticeable since he was really sick ? Maybe he is just more sensitive to everything in general now.

    If he has always growled at you when you have put your face close to his feet – then you can do something about that.

    Riley from day 1 since I got him - gets a massage of some sort most days ! This allows me to touch him anywhere I like without him getting stressed and uncomfortable. Maybe this is something you could try ?

    Have a look at this link for ideas on getting Hooch more comfortable with his feet being touched. There are quite a few - regarding pup being quiet and cutting dog nails:

    kikopup - YouTube

  5. #5


    Thank you!
    I only stepped on his tail and he didn't seem to be in pain, it was more the fright I think.
    His feet - he lets us touch etc, just not our face near it. I always kiss him and cuddle and most of the time he will tolerate my face near his feet but when it is very obvious he will do this little growl and jump and instant apology. It has been this way since the day we got him.
    Will have a look at your link. Thank you for answering!

  6. #6


    Some pups are really sensitive if someone is touching their feet - probably not a lot different to us !

    This video I thought was a good one - well I think all of her videos are good !

    Upside Down Settle - dog training - YouTube

    Small steps and Good Luck !

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2009


    A growl is usually about warning you. Ie please don't step on my feet (or bite them).

    For my dog it's also about having a chat. But the talking growl has a different happier tone to it.

    I think it's good to respect a dog's warning growl - Hooch is clearly a bit anxious about his feet. So you can try to counter condition it, or just allow him let you know when you're too close to his feet. It may be that you just need to move a little bit more slowly so he can see you're not going to squash him.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2010


    Well, i did know a dog that would talk to you with a growl to get attention. there attempt to talk to you.
    was there way of saying hey.
    was best tempermented dog i ever met, never hurt a fly,
    with growling, tone of the growl can play a big part to what they mean with its intent.
    ie, play growling, the "carefull" growl, the "no stop that" growl, and "im super pissed and going to bite if u dont back off" growl.
    variation in tone and body language/expression can play a lot depending on dog and situation.

    most people even the best can make mistakes when it comes to a talking dog.
    have seen a dog punish because of a growl that didnt mean what person thought it ment.

  9. #9


    Well I had the best chance of trying to figure out those growls.
    Hooch, being Hooch... was very naughty and cut himself (We were visiting and he was playing in the back yard with his best doggie-friend, probably jumped on something).
    He has stitches on his foot so he has been sleeping in our bed in order for us to supervise him.
    Everytime husband as much as move his feet, Hooch jumps in a freaked out way. My feet not so much.
    Maybe a male used to kick him before we saved him. I dont know, but I do know he is petrified of it. He jumps like something burns him everytime husband moves his feet in bed near him. He doesn't growl when that happens, only if I put my face near his feet for a long time.
    Hooch will never ever bite or hurt anyone, I know his growls are not a threat, more of a way to ask us to stop. He feels so sorry as soon as he does it too.
    I think we will have to slowly over time get him used to having feet near him. So sad such a beautiful animal with such a good heart had bad experiences to scar him like this.
    By the way - he used to growl during play, purely playful but we had to stop him doing it because we have many kids coming and going and we were worried he would play-growl at a kid and it will be taken very wrong by kid and/or parents. too bad because i liked it

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2009


    I taught Frosty to "growl" on cue. She goes "rrrr ooo op" with a rise at the end like "is this right?".

    So it's pretty easy to show parents that she's not serious...

    Serious looks horrible. Especially if I happen to be holding her collar and it makes the tone of it all gaggy.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Tags for this Thread


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts