It’s an age-old theme in romantic comedies.
Someone falling in love with their best friend.
And it’s more than just entertainment to make you giddy.
It’s something that does happen in reality.
But can this smitten best friend have four legs?
Can your dog actually end up being into you?
Keep reading to discover:
- 5 reasons why dogs aren’t sexually into humans.
- How a dog’s brain is wired to experience attraction.
- 3 reasons why people think dogs are sexually into them.
- And much more…
Can dogs get sexually attracted to humans?
Dogs can’t get sexually attracted to humans because they experience sexual attraction differently. Sexual attraction in dogs centers on mate recognition. And humans aren’t potential reproductive mates due to anatomical and chemical differences. This incompatibility means there can be no attraction.
5 reasons why dogs can’t get sexually attracted to humans
#1: The recognition species concept
Evolutionary scientists use different concepts to define species. One of these concepts is the recognition species concept. It’s where mate recognition comes in.
To simplify it, a set of organisms recognize each other as potential mates. And that puts them in the same species.
Dogs and humans clearly don’t belong to the same species. Other concepts will also tell you the same thing.
But we’re getting specific here. And when it comes to sexual attraction, the recognition species concept hits the mark.
Animals belonging to one species don’t get attracted to animals of other species. For most creatures other than us Homo sapiens, sex is only for reproduction.
If dogs can’t make babies with a particular animal, well then… They couldn’t care less about them. Sexually, that is.
So go ahead and breathe a sigh of relief.
Your doggo doesn’t want to make you the mother of their pups. You simply don’t have enough nipples for that.
#2: Behavioral isolation
Evolution has a mechanism in place. It’s called reproductive isolation. And its purpose is to preserve species integrity.
It does this by preventing members of different species from breeding. And there are extra safeguards, just in case.
If breeding should take place, there’ll be no offspring. Genetic incompatibility should result in miscarriage.
But if there are in fact offspring, they’ll be sterile. So they’d be unable to make more of themselves.
And evolution gets to keep those pure species lines.
Now, there are specific forms of isolations under reproductive isolation. One of them is behavioral isolation.
It has to do with the mating rituals of species. And animals only recognize and respond to those of their own.
It’s evolution’s way of making sure different species don’t interbreed. This would otherwise create hybrids. And there’d eventually be no more species integrity.
Needless to say, the mating rituals of dogs and humans are vastly different.
Humans try to attract mates by grooming and dressing up. But that designer dress and that cologne don’t mean anything to dogs.
They’re more interested in urine.
A study was done on the role of urine in semiochemical communication. One experiment exposed male dogs to urine from females in estrus.
Sniffing and licking were followed by salivation. This reaction indicated a much higher level of interest from the male dogs. They showed less interest in other urine samples.
So what’s with the urine?
Female dogs advertise their readiness to mate through their urine. And some will even urinate more frequently to ensure the message really gets out there.
Now, I assume you flush your urine down the toilet. But even if your dog did get to sniff it, the chemical makeup is different. And it wouldn’t interest them in that way.
So that’s one more reason why your dog can’t get sexually attracted to you.
What a relief!
#3: Mechanical isolation
There’s another relevant mechanism under reproductive isolation. It’s called mechanical isolation.
It’s another of evolution’s ways of preventing interbreeding. This time it has to do with anatomy.
To be able to mate, the genitalia has to be compatible. And in every species, there are differences in size, shape, and placement.
And these differences couldn’t be starker in humans and dogs.
Mechanical isolation ties into mate recognition. And dogs and humans are incompatible mates.
Some people suspect their dog might have the hots for them. But the truth is, dogs are uninterested. And it’s partly because humans are bipedal and can’t be mounted.
There’s also that small issue of clothing that covers up their privates.
And what’s unmountable isn’t sexually attractive.
But if you want more assurance that you’re dog’s not into you…
#4: Dogs have sex solely for reproduction
They’re not looking to have a good time. I mean, that’s part of the experience. But dogs don’t have sex for the pleasure of it.
They’re more practical than humans in this way. They have sex for one purpose alone. And that’s reproduction.
Now we’ve already established that female humans can’t be mothers to pups. And neither can male humans impregnate female dogs. Evolution won’t allow it.
So then… Of what use are humans to dogs sexually?
None at all.
No use. No attraction. It’s really not complicated.
You can also check out: 13 Safe Tips To Calm Down A Sexually Excited Dog (How-To)
#5: Dogs don’t have sexual preferences
Humans find certain traits more attractive than others. And some can really get their motors running.
But it’s not the same for dogs.
No male will pass by a female in heat because her coat isn’t long enough. Or because she isn’t pedigreed.
If the semiochemicals say a female is receptive, it’s time to mount.
See, dogs don’t have sexual preferences. They only have sexual appetites. It’s probably best illustrated by your dog humping the throw pillow.
And humping one pillow every time doesn’t qualify for sexual preference.
Now female dogs may show “preference” for whom they’ll mate with. They do pick one when there are several suitors.
But it’s nothing like the sexual preferences humans have. Dogs simply don’t perceive things that way.
They can’t even have clear-cut preferences within their own species. How much more preferences towards other species?
Why do people think that dogs can get sexually attracted to humans?
#1: Dogs mount humans
I can’t decide which one is more embarrassing. Being humped by someone’s dog. Or my dog humping someone.
Each scenario is an awkward nightmare of its own. And it gives rise to an uncomfortable assumption.
Dogs must be sexually attracted to the humans they’re humping.
But what does science say about it?
Well, science says there’s nothing sexually attractive about your leg. To a dog, that is. It’s just a means to an end.
That’s because masturbation is normal dog behavior. It’s hugely embarrassing for their parent. But it’s perfectly normal behavior for them.
For puppies, it’s all about practice. The future of their species depends on how well they can thrust. So these tiny tots start practicing at an early age.
In adulthood, sexually frustrated dogs masturbate. They hump the nearest object. It has nothing to do with how sexually attractive the furniture is.
And sometimes, it just happens to be your leg. Because it’s what was available, not what was sexy.
You might also like: 7 Best Ways To Relieve A Sexually Frustrated Male Dog
#2: Dogs sniff humans’ crotches
Dogs have phenomenal olfaction or sense of smell. It’s the most acute of their five senses. And they experience the world primarily through their noses.
According to PetMD, they have 300 million olfactory receptors. Humans only have a meager 6 million by comparison.
In addition to that, dogs have a special organ. It’s called the vomeronasal organ. It helps them detect pheromones.
Pheromones are chemical substances. They give off certain information. This includes the sex, age, and mood of a mammal. And also whether they’re able to mate.
These pheromones are released by the apocrine glands or sweat glands.
The highest concentration of apocrine glands in dogs is in the anus and genitals. That’s why they sniff each other’s butts. It’s where all the information is.
In humans, it’s in the armpits and genitals. The genitals are more accessible than the armpits. So that’s what they go for.
And certain crotches are more interesting than others. These are the crotches of people who:
- Are menstruating.
- Have recently given birth.
- Have recently had sexual intercourse.
These individuals have higher levels of pheromones than usual. And dogs are keen to investigate this.
It’s all a matter of canine curiosity. A dog sniffing a human crotch isn’t sexually interested in what’s there.
And while it’s still embarrassing, it’s less uncomfortable. At least they’re not trying to get into your pants.
#3: Dogs shower humans with affection
Dogs didn’t get the title “man’s best friend” for nothing. It was well earned by their affection and devotion to humans.
They’re emotional creatures. It’s largely what makes them such great companions. It allows humans to form deep connections with them.
Research even shows that dogs exhibit remarkable empathy. They’re moved by humans in distress. And they try to provide comfort. This trait only solidifies their bond even further.
But couple this devotion with mounting and crotch-sniffing. And it can be grossly misinterpreted.
The indifferent cat would never be suspected of having the hots for humans. Yet one could almost be forgiven for thinking that of the ever-affectionate dog.
But the only actual fault is with humans attributing their flawed nature to dogs. The poor dogs’ innocent intentions are just that. Innocent.
People also ask:
Can dogs get turned on by humans?
Dogs can’t get turned on by humans. They have a mate recognition system. And it only allows them to recognize members of their own species as mates. While they’re known to masturbate in the presence of humans, their arousal is due to other factors. It has nothing to do with the humans themselves.
Can dogs find humans sexually attractive?
Dogs can’t find humans sexually attractive. They don’t perceive members of other species as sexually attractive. This is due to the evolutionary mechanism of reproductive isolation. Certain factors prevent one species from interbreeding with members of another. This preserves species integrity.
Are male dogs attracted to female owners?
Male dogs aren’t sexually attracted to female owners. But dogs do display a fondness and preference for them. This may be due to their more gentle nature, higher-pitched voice, and smaller physique. These aren’t intimidating to dogs. As opposed to men with deeper voices and larger bodies.
Can a dog fall in love with a human?
A dog can’t fall in love with a human because they belong to different species. Evolutionary mechanisms are in place to prohibit this. Reproductive isolation prevents the attraction, copulation, or procreation of two different species. It preserves the integrity of species this way.
BONUS #1: The myth of asserting dominance
The dominance theory is deeply rooted in pop culture.
For some trainers, it’s the go-to explanation for every dog behavior.
One of the prime examples is humping to assert dominance.
If a pup is humping their littermates, they’re asserting dominance over the pack.
If they’re humping the cat, they’re asserting dominance over other pets.
If they’re humping your leg, they’re asserting dominance over you. And if they’re humping the stuffed toy…
Well, they’re asserting dominance over that too.
The truth is, there’s just no science to the dominance theory. There supposedly was.
But it’s unraveled. According to VCA, it’s more myth than fact.
It was developed based on research on captive wolves. Then the dominance-asserting behaviors observed were attributed to all wolves.
And even to dogs.
But current research shows that wolves in the wild don’t actually behave this way.
And these dominance displays were a byproduct of captivity.
The dominance theory doesn’t hold water. And it certainly can’t be used to explain why your dog humps you.
You might also want to know: Why Do Dogs Hump The Air? 9 Real Causes + What To Do
BONUS #2: Bestiality
There’s another reason why some believe dogs can be sexually attracted to humans. And it’s a pretty disturbing one—bestiality.
Bestiality is defined by the ASPCA as “any sexual contact with an animal by a human.”
Now, if you’re still reading this, be warned. It gets worse.
Bestiality can happen with any animal. Or even animals.
And dogs are no exception. Man’s best friend can fall victim to this perversion.
One example—don’t worry, I won’t give more—is of a woman and her dog. And as horrifying as it sounds, she got her dog to orally pleasure her.
So that means the dog was sexually attracted to her, right?
Wrong on so many levels. Just wrong.
As I mentioned earlier, dogs are driven by instinct. If a person sexually abuses theirs, they’ll act on that instinct.
But they’re not motivated by an actual attraction to the human.
This even happens in non-bestiality scenarios.
Okay, well, some argue it’s still bestiality. But take stallions and bulls, for instance.
They’re masturbated to collect their semen.
It’s then used to artificially inseminate mares and cows.
These stallions and bulls are stimulated and ejaculate. But they’re not at all sexually attracted to their human handlers.
Likewise, dogs may be involved in an act of bestiality. But that in no way means they’re sexually attracted to their perverted humans.