Some dogs are naturally drawn to one gender over another. If your dog tends to favor another family member over you, you might be wondering why. Truth be told; each dog is an individual, and thus, their preferences for one sex over another is also quite individual.
Do Dogs Typically Prefer Adults to Kids?
Though most dogs display no preference to adults over children, the amount of socialization a puppy receives when very young may have an impact on who a dog will naturally gravitate to. Dogs who have not been exposed to children during their critical developmental periods may prefer the company of adults. This can be for a number of different reasons. Children make rapid and unpredictable movements that puppies and even adult dogs can find quite disturbing. By comparison, adults move more gently and with less frenetic hand and arm gestures, helping dogs to feel more at ease.
Other Behaviors Children May Exhibit That Can Be Off-putting or Upsetting to a Dog Include:
- Running to or away from the dog
- Hugging and kissing the dog
- Climbing the dog
- Shoving the dog
- Putting things in the dog’s face
- Petting the dog when sleeping or eating
- Taking toys or bones away from the dog
- Dropping the dog
Do Dogs Prefer People Who are Calm and Quiet?
Dogs prefer people who speak in gentler tones and that are naturally calm. A loud or piercing voice is likely to cause a dog to feel anxious and even afraid. Dogs are naturally soothed by a person whose voice is light and happy as opposed to angry or morose. When spoken to with a friendly tone, most dogs will respond in kind.
But calmness and quietness is communicated in other ways besides a person’s voice. A person’s body language can elicit a positive response from a dog as well. People who assume postures that invite a friendly greeting from a dog are more likely to be approached with exuberance than those whose body language communicates disinterest or hostility. In addition to this, dogs are naturally drawn to people who angle their bodies so that their side is facing the dog instead of those who face the dog from a head on position.
Another posture dogs prefer is the kneeling position. This approach is non-threatening to a dog and invites the dog to come closer to the person if he so chooses. Leaning over a dog can be very intimidating, and many dogs will shy away or even become aggressive when a person adopts this stance.
Avoiding direct eye contact with a dog is another way to encourage sociable behavior from a dog particularly if the dog in question is naturally shy or wary.
Do Dogs Prefer Women to Men?
Though we cannot definitively say that dogs prefer women to men, we can note that dogs are attracted to certain postures, tones of voice, and behavioral characteristics, and this set of traits is more commonly seen in females rather than males.
Among the things that draw many dogs to a woman instead of a man are:
- A soft sounding voice
- Smaller body type
- Lack of facial hair
It is important to note that some men also exhibit the above characteristics, and some women may display their opposite. This is why it is not possible to factually state that dogs prefer one gender over another. We do know that dogs are repelled by certain traits which include bigger physical frames, facial hair, and deep voices.
Another important factor to consider is who dogs are primarily exposed to in their everyday lives. Since most veterinary personnel and in home caregivers are women, dogs learn early on to trust and gravitate towards those of the female gender, seeing them as nurturers and providers of good things each day.
Do Dogs Prefer Older or Younger Women?
Typically, when there is a preference, dogs prefer the company of adult women to younger females.
Why is this?
Dogs view younger women similarly to how they see children. Since small children are very unpredictable and engage in such behaviors as teasing, pulling tails, randomly jumping, taking away toys, etc, dogs learn to avoid youth and gravitate towards what they see as age and stability. Loud, boisterous environments, in the dog’s mind, are potentially dangerous, and thus, best avoided. In this instance, the dog is making an association between younger children and younger adults based on the dog’s own set of experiences.
Do Other Experience Impact How a Dog Feels About a Person Regardless of Gender?
It is interesting to note that dogs do remember their interactions with people, and whether they view these interactions as positive or negative will impact future reactions to them. For example, a dog groomer may have a small body type and speak with a soft voice, characteristics that dogs love. However, the action of grooming is anxiety-producing in many dogs. Instead of focusing on the positive qualities the dog likes about the person, the dog may instead associate the groomer only with the activity that happens each time he sees him or her, and thus, avoid the person. This is not gender specific selection but role specific.
Of course, what cannot be ignored is a dog’s experiences from his birth throughout his years on earth. Dogs that have been treated harshly by a person may intuitively fear another person who displays the same physical traits even if that person is naturally gentle and kind towards the animal. Negative experiences can definitely shape future behavior.
Does Breed Make a Difference?
Sometimes, a dog’s breed can make a difference when it comes to which gender person a dog will be most drawn to. Generally speaking, female dogs often bond more closely to the male in their home while male dogs are the opposite. Of course, this is not always the case as dogs are individuals and form attachments in their own unique way and for their own unique reasons. Some breeds also tend to dedicate themselves to only one person in the family. There is often no rhyme or reason as to who they select as their favorite person or why.
Do dogs prefer women or men? The honest truth is dogs are attracted to a specific set of physical traits that are most often displayed by women. However, they do not have a set preference for one gender over another.