Why Dogs Hate It When You Blow on Them?
Have you ever blown on your dog’s face purely out of amusement and were surprised to see their venomous reaction to it? Surely, it made you think why do dogs hate it when you blow on them.
This may have seemed unusual to you because you know your dog doesn’t seem to mind it when they have their head poking outside the car’s window, allowing the fresh air to ruffle their hair.
You should know that even if most dogs are usually thrilled and love goofing around, there are some things they find irritating, and getting blown in the face is one of them.
To answer the question, ‘why do dogs hate it when you blow on them?’ we need to take a couple of things into consideration and then delve deeper into the causes.
Dogs can’t blow air out of their mouths like humans, so they may not understand what you’re trying to do.
Most dogs are also known to get restless in situations that are unfamiliar to them. They may translate their unease into anger because their favorite human is acting so strange all of a sudden.
It’s always better to avoid blowing in your dog’s face not to get bitten in the face.
Why Dogs Hate When You Blow on Their Faces?
Dogs dislike being blown at for a number of reasons. Here are some possible explanations for why your dog gets mad at you when you do things of this sort.
They’re Not Comfortable with Close Proximity
If someone tries to blow air in your face, you’d think it’s reasonable for you to get mad at them. Just like you love having your personal space and hate when people invade it, your dog can also feel the same way.
To blow on the dog’s face, you have to get very close to them, and they may not be comfortable with that. That’s why children are known to get bitten by dogs a lot more than adults because they’re around the same height as them.
When you blow on your dog, and they are not able to sense your playful intent, they’ll start snapping at you. If you notice your dog licking their lips, looking away, or staring at you when you get too close for comfort, then it’s a clear sign that they’re uncomfortable with what’s going on.
They Misinterpret Your Intention
When dogs don’t pick up on the intent behind your actions, they can easily feel threatened.
Your dog’s reaction may startle you because they don’t seem too bothered when they lay in front of a fan that’s blowing air directly onto their fur. Nor do they flinch when they stick their head out of the window. So what is it about their owners blowing on them that bothers them so much?
What seems harmless to you may seem like a threat to them. You’re just trying to amuse yourself or people around you, but what’s going through your dog’s mind is a whole different story. They might think you’re trying to assert your dominance on them by acting in such a strange way.
You may have noticed that when two dogs that are completely unfamiliar with each other, are about to get into a fight, they start a staring competition where they do nothing but breathe heavily until one of them decides to take the hint and leave. This is their way of establishing dominance and letting the other dog know who the boss is.
Similarly, blowing on your dog may seem playful to you, but your dog can take it as a threat and start getting aggressive the next second. They can also get confused because they can’t make sense of why you were in the mood for playtime a minute ago and why you’re acting so bizarre all of a sudden!
Their reaction is purely instinctive. They’ll try to get away from you and if they feel cornered and helpless, then they may even start yapping at you. Since all dogs aren’t the same, some may not respond as aggressively as other dogs but this can still be pretty annoying to them.
Watch this video below on dogs misinterpreting owner’s intentions.
It Catches Them Unawares
Even if your dog doesn’t mind having your face up close, they may still get angry if you blow air directly on their face. It’s something that can easily catch them off guard because the dog is incapable of performing the same action.
When something unfamiliar happens, your dog may respond to it instinctively in the form of a growl or by pacing back and forth. They may even bite your face, which is why you need to stop doing things your dog doesn’t take a liking to.
If you’re confused as to why dogs love sticking their heads out of windows but can’t take it when you’re blowing on them, you need to take into account that constant flow of fresh air is remarkably different than a sudden blow of warm air.
Dogs know what wind feels like, and that’s why they’re comfortable with it. It doesn’t only feel good on their skin, but it also carries with it all sorts of scents that dogs love exploring.
And the thing about keeping their heads out the window is that they’re not doing it against their will. They can choose to move away if they want to. It’s not the same as being cornered by a human and being blown directly in the face.
It Causes Them Discomfort
When you blow in your dog’s face, you need to be mindful of the fact that you could be disturbing their sense of smell, sight, and hearing.
Dogs are known for their heightened sense of smell, which can be attributed to the moisture inside their nose and a million sensors as well. They’re great at sniffing out odors from a great distance. This ability allows them to get an idea about their surroundings.
Blowing on their face can easily throw them off because it may dry out their nose and eyes, which can cause them to lose the view of what surrounds them. It would be entirely natural for them to get aggressive after this because you’ve made them physically uncomfortable.
If you wouldn’t like a stream of warm air blown directly in your eyes, then you shouldn’t wonder why your dog doesn’t like it either.
They Don't Understand It
Dogs can’t talk to us or they would’ve made sure to let their owners know which of their habits they find most annoying. Instead of looking for scientific explanations behind their aggression, you should heed the warning and stop doing the one thing that annoys them the most.
They don’t understand the action and it frustrates them because they’re curious creatures and like to explore the unknown. If you continue doing something that they don’t have a clue about, it will make them feel very helpless and they’ll become violent just to get you to behave normally.
A fresh breeze is completely different from snorted breaths so you shouldn’t wonder why the former doesn’t bother them at all. It may be your strong-scented toothpaste or something you had for lunch (yikes!) that had a very strong flavor that could feel very invasive to their sensitive nose.
Do Dogs Get Angry When You Blow on Them?
So, now you know why do dogs hate it when you blow on them. But you must know how dogs will respond to this type of behavior.
When you see your dog growling or snapping at you, then that means he’s warning you to stop before he resorts to more violent action. You should heed the warning and immediately stop annoying your dog.
A dog’s growl can be their way to let you know that they are not comfortable with something. It’s a blessing in disguise and needs to be taken very seriously to avoid getting bitten.
Ignoring your dog’s clear way of telling you to stop will make them more furious, and you can expect an attack to follow seconds after.
You need to be especially careful with children because if they start blowing in the dog’s face, they may get bitten and the bite can cause a lot of damage. It can take expensive medical procedures and even cosmetic surgery to get your face fixed after a severe dog bite.
Watch the video below on how a dog responds to being blown on its face.
Why Do Dogs Lick the Air When You Blow On Them?
You may have noticed your dog licking the air when you try to blow on them. While it may seem like they’re licking the air, they’re actually trying to lick their nose.
Since they have a very sensitive nose that allows them to navigate their surroundings, they need to keep it moist to use it. When you’re blowing air mindlessly into their face, their nose could dry up which is why they respond reflexively and try to reapply the moisture.
It’s instinctive, the same way you can’t stop yourself from blinking your eyes when someone blows air into it. Your eyes dry out and blinking allows your eyelids to extract fluid from your tear ducts and spread it all over your eyeballs.
Other things dogs might do to give you a warning is lick their lips, yawn, shove their head to one side and make whale eyes at you. You shouldn’t be concerned about your dog when you notice them doing any of these things. It’s not a way for them to show their aggression or be hostile towards you. It’s just a way for them to show their discomfort.
Since dogs have enhanced senses and about 300 million olfactory receptors, you never know what could possibly be bugging them.
Does Blowing in a Dog’s Ear Hurt Them?
Even if you try to do it gently, blowing in a dog’s ear can hurt them. The sound of blowing may seem harmless and innocent to you while it may be loud and irksome for them. That’s because dogs can hear about four times the distance humans can.
You might notice vets that blow into dog’s ears through a funnel. This is an activity that’s done to check if they’re deaf or not. If the dog doesn’t get upset, then that usually is a sign of deafness.
The sound of blowing air can upset your dog the same way nails scratching on a blackboard upsets us! Some dogs may not be as sensitive to this sound as others, depending on the differences in their ear sensitivities, but they’re definitely all annoyed by it.
You shouldn’t treat your dog the same way you’d treat a human. You need to be respectful of the differences in their sense of smell and hearing and try not to cause painful obstructions in their normal lives.
Watch the video below on how a dog reacts when owner blows into its ears.
What Can Happen If You Keep Blowing on Dogs?
Now that you know your dog hates the sensation, it wouldn’t be smart to continue doing things that make them furious. Some people enjoy annoying their dogs just to make videos of them and upload them on YouTube just for a couple of likes, but this isn’t fun for dogs.
They can get so upset that they’ll resort to aggression and try to bite you. If you keep blowing air on your dog, then you might cause them a lot of stress. Due to this, they might become violent towards you or anyone else that tries to approach them.
Over time, they may develop an anxiety disorder that could force you to empty out your pockets just to pay for the treatment. Your dog may also stop trusting you and start keeping their distance from you.
If you love your dog then you need to refrain from blowing on them and causing them major discomfort just for your amusement.
Avoid whistling at them as well, because it can be interpreted the same way as you blowing air and the sound can be especially painful for their ears.
Other Things You Probably Do That Your Dog Hates
Even if your dog’s the most playful one you’ve come across, they still might get annoyed at some of the things you do. While taking them to a vet and bathing them are actions you absolutely can’t avoid, at other times, you have to put your pet’s needs first. This doesn’t apply to all dogs because one dog may hate something the other one seems to love.
Wearing Strong Perfume
You already know that a dog’s sense of smell is a lot more sensitive than yours. This could mean that the scent of your favorite perfume may be unpleasant for your dog. You need to be careful with the kind of smell you wear when you’re near your dog because strong fragrances can irritate their nose.
If it’s unusual for your dog to keep a distance from you, then it may be because they hate the perfume you’re wearing. You also need to make sure the product you’re using doesn’t have chemicals that are toxic for your dog.
Hugging Them Forcefully
Hugging is an innocent and harmless action. You embrace your dogs because you think it will have the same effect on them that it has on you. But you may be surprised to learn that most dogs don’t like being hugged.
Some will let you embrace them without getting aggressive, while others can become violent if they’re touched, especially by people they’re not entirely familiar with.
Kids love hugging dogs, so you need to keep a watchful eye on them when they’re around your dogs. They can get bitten because they don’t always know how to handle animals properly and can make them anxious and uncomfortable.
Giving Them Mixed Signals
You may not know this, but your canine friends are always trying to figure you out. They don’t ignore your actions. Instead, they try to interpret everything you do or say to them. If your behavior with your dogs is unpredictable, then you may be making your dog anxious without realizing it.
When you’re training your dogs, make sure everyone else in the house knows the different hand signals and voice cues that need to be used, as well as what’s the acceptable behavior that you’re trying to reinforce. Inconsistency can make it hard for your dog to understand you.
Don’t confuse them by giving mixed signals about what you expect from them. If one person uses positive reinforcement to encourage a behavior while others don’t pay any regard to it, then your dog wouldn’t know what to do, and all your efforts to train them will go down the drain.
You need to make your dogs feel comfortable in your home by creating a schedule for them, like giving them food and putting them to bed at the same time each day.
Asserting Your Dominance
Old school dog trainers will tell you that you need to assert dominance over your dogs to let them know that you’re the one in charge. They think that dogs are trying to become dominant when they do things they don’t approve of.
What they don’t realize is that this type of behavior can affect dogs negatively. They may become frightened of their owners. If you notice that your dog wets himself every time you try to get close to them or talk to them, then that means they are scared of you.
Older dogs can interpret your behavior as a threat and may become violent towards you. Showing your dog that you’re the boss shouldn’t make them start mistrusting you. You need to give them space and be kind to them to make sure they feel protected when they are with you.
Handling Them Roughly
Dogs hate getting manhandled. If you let strangers pet your dog, they may get visibly upset. A stranger reaching for them can make them feel intimidated and anxious.
If you haven’t been able to desensitize them to different types of handling like nail trimming, grooming, and medical examinations, then chances are they’ll be terrified if an unfamiliar person tried to stroke them.
You need to create a foundation of trust first and then slowly get them familiarized with other forms of handling.
Not Taking Them on Walks
Dogs love being active and going on walks regularly. As a dog owner, you need to pay attention to their needs and make sure they’re getting enough physical and mental stimulation every day. Talk to do trainers about what’s the required amount of exercise for your dog.
When your dog has no outlets to release all that excess energy, and the boredom becomes too much for them to handle, they’ll start growing increasingly impatient and may take their frustration out on your home. They won’t let you sleep peacefully at night and cause a great disturbance everywhere you take them.
Depending on the breed of your dog, a simple 10-minute walk around the park may not be what they need to stay active and healthy. You also need to give your dog an appropriate amount of mental stimulation like interactive toys or chew toys to play with or taking them to a dog park now and then.
Yelling at Them
No one likes being spoken to in a demeaning manner. That same way, dogs can also get upset if they get yelled at or treated harshly. They can’t make sense of the words, but they can feel the emotions being directed at them.
Making your dog fearful of you is a terrible thing to do. Your relationship with your dog should be based on mutual respect. If you think scaring your dog is a way to get them to respect and obey you, then you couldn’t be more wrong.
If you’re continually treating your dog in an unkind manner, then they’ll soon become desensitized to it and carry out their actions just the same. To control your dog’s aggression, you need to encourage good behavior through positive reinforcement.
It’s an effective way to distract your dog from behaving unacceptably. Train your dog to understand phrases like ‘leave it’ or ‘come’ to get them to stop doing what they’re doing. You also need to make sure to reward them if they follow your orders.
Dogs will comply more readily if you request them to do or not do something as opposed to giving them a firm ‘no.’
Vacuuming With Them in the Room
With pets around the house, it’s impossible not to vacuum. Dogs, in particular, are known to shed a lot. But you may have seen your dog run away and hide every time you plug in the vacuum and start sweeping away.
If you have, then that’s because your dog is scared of vibrations. Dogs can sense any vibrations just through their incredibly sensitive paw pads. That’s also why they’re able to detect a thunderstorm approaching.
The sound of the vacuum can trick them into thinking that something dangerous is on its way. To make sure your dogs feel safe, keep them out of the rooms you’re going to vacuum.
Dogs tend to mirror their owners. They can sense the energy inside a house and absorb it. If you’re upset or tense around your dog, then he may get stressed out as well. If you’re fearful of something, then you should know that any strong emotion that you may feel or exhibit is also getting passed down to your dog.
Getting into fights with your relatives or your partner, or bringing the daily frustrations of your work life home can put a strain on your dog too without you knowing. All the negative energy in the house can even cause your dog to become aggressive. This is why it’s essential to be as calm as possible around your dogs.
Watch the video below on other things you do that your dog hates.
Take the Warning Seriously
Now that you’ve learned why dogs absolutely dislike it when you blow on them even with the most harmless intentions, you need to understand the way they’ll respond to this behavior so you can protect yourself and your loved ones from an impending bite.
If you see your dog growling at you or snapping at your face or your hands, then you should know he’s trying to warn you to stop before he decides to hurt you. Keep a special eye on little kids when they’re around dogs because they may not understand why the dog is growling and get seriously bitten on the face or their hands.
A dog’s growl is their way to let you know that they are not comfortable with something. It’s a blessing in disguise that needs to be taken very seriously to avoid getting bitten. Ignoring your dog’s clear way of telling you to stop will make them more furious and it won’t lead to anything good.
If you don’t take caution and get bitten on the face, it can take expensive medical procedures and even cosmetic surgery to get it fixed.
Final Thoughts on Why Dogs Hate It When You Blow on Them
As a dog owner, you should put your pet’s comfort first. Things that may seem harmless and amusing to you can cause significant discomfort to your pets and make them trust you less. Any sign of aggression or anger should not be taken lightly. If your dog starts keeping their distance from you, then you need to think about your actions.
Dogs are quite sensitive, so you need to take great care of them to create a secure and loving bond. Just because you own them and provide them with food and shelter does not mean you can treat them in any way you please.
Your love and respect will make your dog loyal to you forever. After all, they are called a man’s best friend for a reason. The same way you’re quick to use corrective measures on them every time they misbehave, you also need to put yourself and your actions in check to make sure your dogs live a happy and fulfilled life.
Daniel Bloom is the mind behind the Dog Pages blog. He created this blog for the love his dog, Augustine. He manages his team of contributors who love dogs as much as he does. When he is not blogging, he spends his time cooking and reading. He never misses his daily walks with his dog and loves to play Frisbee with Augustine whenever he gets a chance.