Do German Shepherds Like To Cuddle?

Do German Shepherds Like to Cuddle?

I recently adopted an adorable German Shepherd from a local rescue.  He is a massive dog without a doubt, and from what I can tell so far, an excellent watchdog.  I live alone, so I adopted him to be a watchdog but also a companion to me.  By nature, I am a person who likes to cuddle.  I am hoping he and I can become cuddle buddies once he gets used to his new home.  I don’t know much about this breed, but I want to learn all I can to keep him happy.  I want to see if he will like to cuddle with me at some point or if he is the kind of dog that is only a watchdog.

After a long day of work in my garden, I decided to take a few minutes and research this topic.  Here is what I found out.

Do German Shepherds Like to Cuddle?

Do German Shepherds Like to Cuddle?  Most German Shepherds do like to cuddle.  Their liking of cuddles depends mainly on the uniquely individual dog and not so much on the breed.  They want to be close to their human companions and will, from time to time, cuddle or snuggle up beside them. 

This cuddle or snuggle can be for various reasons that will vary from moment to moment in their day, but one thing is sure, they do show love and affection. 

This situation doesn’t mean that this breed is a cuddle bug that will crawl up on a lap any chance they get and give kisses and snuggles.  This breed is not bred for that type of affection.  They are very loyal and hard-working and are serious at what they do. 

They bond very closely with those they love, and this is the foundation of their bond, which will have them staying close and looking to cuddle.  For those potential dog owners who want a smart, hard-working, and loveable dog, this breed of dog is perfect!

The German Shepherd is a breed of dog that works.  Whatever task they are set to accomplish, they do it well.  They are smart, healthy, and learn quickly.  For these reasons, they are often used in the military and police work.  They are also used as therapy dogs and other occupations in communities to be of service to others.

Many people have a misconception about the German Shepherd dog breed that these dogs are not affectionate and don’t like to cuddle.  Their size and history give the wrong impression of them.

Loyal by nature, they are a breed of dog that thrives best when they are close to their human companion, or those they love. 

They form very close bonds with their family or human companion, and it is a vital part of their happiness to be near them.

When we think of a dog that likes to cuddle, we may think of a lap dog that will sit on top of us and snuggle in our lap.  Kisses, hugs, and cuddles with these dogs are comfortable.  The German Shepherd is not that kind of breed.

Despite their size, they still need lots of love and affection, including cuddling with their human companions.  This cuddling will likely look and feel different unless, of course, their human companion likes to have a large dog of this size sit on their lap and use them as a couch!

The love and bond that they form through these cuddle moments are the foundation of a life long relationship that they will form.  This bond, for the German Shepherd, is unbreakable.  They are a very loyal dog breed.

What are some ways that a German Shepherd will cuddle?

There are many ways that a German Shepherd will cuddle and form a close physical connection with their human companion or family.

The German Shepherd might cuddle by leaning into their human companion.  This leaning in is a way for them to feel the comfort of knowing that their human companion is there for them if need be and a way for them to show their human companion that they are there too.  The bond goes both ways.

With a dog of this size, the human companion may feel the weight of their love and devotion.  This sitting on a lap may not seem as cuddly as their owner might desire, but it is love, devotion, and affection non the less.

Another way that they might cuddle is by resting their head or paw on top of their human companion or loved one.  This connection can show their owner a passive but devoted way that they are loved and the German Shepherd’s loyalty.

German Shepherds do offer kisses and snuggles, as well as love having their belly rubbed and receiving pats of affection from those they love.  This affection may not be as often as certain other dogs.

There are some German Shepherds, that if allowed, will become bed hogs and share the bed with their human companion.  This bed-sharing can be a great way to cuddle with a German Shepherd without being crushed.  This sleeping arrangement is also is a great way to spend time bonding while relaxing.

The most common way for a German Shepherd to cuddle is by being near their human companion.  Whether this closeness will always include kisses and belly rubs depends on the dog.

What are some ways I can encourage a German Shepherd to cuddle?

There are numerous ways to encourage a German Shepherd to cuddle that is easy and strengthen the bond between human companions and dogs.  Depending on the dog and their prior home life, it may take time and energy to show love and affection more openly.

This open affection must begin with the dog owner.  It must become a ritual in the German Shepherds day, similar to eating and going for a walk.  It may be necessary for a dog breed that is a little less cuddle than certain other breeds.

Do German Shepherds Like to Cuddle?

Spending a few minutes in the morning before getting out of bed or after breakfast to not only tend to their needs but also encourage cuddling and affection is a great place to start.  After that being open to spontaneous moments where these moments can happen in the day will increase the likelihood that it will happen.

For instance, sitting down on the floor or outside in the grass and encouraging the German Shepherd to sit can help.  Making a point to show affection with words enables them to offer the same.

As stated, this may not happen right away. It may take days or longer for the German Shepherd to understand and accept these moments as a regular part of their workday.  It can be done, and the benefits are well worth the effort.

Having a ritual or schedule of affectionate moments in a day, combined with an open attitude to spontaneous moments, create the foundation of a robust, healthy, and loving bond between owner and dog.

German Shepherds are brilliant dogs that learn quickly.  They will likely catch on fast, and you may find this hard-working dog, taking the show of affection very seriously.  Before long, this big teddy bear of a dog will be cuddled up on a lap, like it or not!

What are some reasons that a German Shepherd may not like to cuddle?

The top reason why a German Shepherd may not like to cuddle is their breed background.  They are a working dog that takes their job and perhaps life very seriously.  Protecting those they love, watching from problems around the house, helping their owner, and serving in the community are very noble and honorable jobs.

They may cuddle here and there, but it is unlikely they will ever become a lap dog, thank goodness for that due to their size!

They always have a job to do, be it ensuring the kids stay in the yard, or making sure the mailman delivers the mail and doesn’t come in the house.  This guard dog mentality is ingrained in who they are and must be respected.

Another reason they may not like to cuddle or cuddle often is their health. 

Depending on the German Shepherd’s health and age, they may or may not want to cuddle. 

Existing or undiscovered health problems can cause this issue.  A sore paw, lack of sleep, hunger, dehydration, aching belly, or other mild problems can cause them to feel less cuddly.

Do German Shepherds Like to Cuddle?

Whatever the reason, if the German Shepherd doesn’t feel cuddly, it is best that their human companion or owner respect this and never try to push the issue.  If they appear to feel unwell in any way, and their human companion can not figure out the problem, it is sometimes necessary to see a veterinarian.

Final Thought

Everyone likes to cuddle at one time or another. The German Shepherd is no different in that regard.  How often and which ways they like to cuddle are as unique as the dogs themselves. 

If we embrace who they are like dogs, we will find ourselves receiving all the love, devotion, and cuddles we need!

Elaine Walker

Elaine is a dedicated dog lover who likes to hike and be outdoors! She has been part of our team here at Embora Pets since 2018 and has provided a lot of great research and information on all types of pets. Elaine is always willing to roll up her sleeves and research the really hard topics and for that we are all thankful.

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