25 dogs who clearly love hugs


Science says "don't hug your dog." And by science we mean one person, who happens to have a degree, who looked at lots of pictures on the Internet.

The question of whether or not hugging your dog causes them stress came from an op-ed from Stanley Coren on Psychology Today, earlier in April, who claimed that the act of hugging and immobilizing your dog and can give them severe anxiety.

SEE ALSO: It's National Hug Day, but please don't hug me

"Dogs are technically cursorial animals, which is a term that indicates that they are designed for swift running," Coren wrote in his op-ed. "That implies that in times of stress or threat the first line of defense that a dog uses is not his teeth, but rather his ability to run away."

Some people, seeing Coren's observations published on Psychology Today took this as a clear-cut, data-backed study, when, in fact, the only research Coren conducted was visual clues he personally picked up from pulling pictures from the Internet.

"Fortunately for me, the Internet abounds with photographs of people and their pets...I decided to look at a random sample of 250 such pictures," Coren wrote.

While it's true that dogs are not, in fact, children, and that you should never squeeze a puppy (or anyone) to the point of discomfort, Coren's dog study is by no means proof that all pups hate hugs. 

"This is interesting preliminary data which might serve as a good starting point for a formal study. But it's important to note that (to my knowledge) this is not a peer-reviewed empirical paper so I would caution against any firm conclusions before the work can go through this important part of the scientific process," Evan MacLean, co-director of Duke's Canine Cognition Center, wrote in an email to The Washington Post.

For a rebuttal to Coren's op-ed, Mashable has taken the liberty of also looking around the Internet for dogs hugging. To our astonishment, we found some very different results.

Have you hugged your dog today?