We were all pretty bummed out learning that our four-legged pals don’t like it when we hug them, and we wondered how we’d shower our pooches with our affection (baking pupcakes, anyone?). Thankfully, original reports of Fido’s disdain for a good old puppy hug aren’t as truthful as we’ve been led to believe.

Woman embracing her dog in autumn park

The idea that we can’t hug our sweet pups was one that we never thought of. And to be told that science proves that hugs can actually hurt? Well, we were just beside ourselves. How would we ever be able to snuggle a little puppy again knowing that it could be causing deep psychological trauma? Thankfully, the reporting wasn’t quite on the cute, wet nose.

According to the good folks at the Washington Post, it seems that the original “study” that is being cited all over the Internet is actually one researcher’s opinion based on observations and isn’t a “peer reviewed” piece of research. What’s “peer reviewed,” you might wonder? Well, it means that a scientist has created a study based on research and that other scientists without any direct interest or involvement in the process have agreed that the research was done properly and that conclusions are safe to report. This means that the original “study” in question from Psychology Today is actually not one that can be proven to be true because no other scientists have signed off on it.


There are lots of other animal behavior experts who don’t necessarily agree with the findings of this one report either, because they don’t even know how the author reached his conclusions (see, that’s that peer review thing again), and they have seen many dogs that love a good cuddle.

We’re relieved to know that hugging a puppy is (probably) not doing anything bad to your dog, so go ahead and snuggle that pupper!

Have a cute photo of you and your dog cuddling? Tweet it to us @BritandCo!

(Photos via Getty)