Have you ever been giving your dog a good scratch or belly rub when they started wagging their leg? When your dog does this you probably think that you are scratching a satisfying itch for them, but really this response is natural reflex that dogs have. Keep reading to learn why dogs wag their leg when you scratch them.

Why Do Dogs Wag Their Leg When You Scratch Them?

The Scratch Reflex

Dogs have a cluster of nerves under certain areas of their skin that, when stimulated by scratching or rubbing, causes a reflex that makes your dog’s leg wag. What purpose does this serve? This response to those areas of the skin being stimulated works to keep critters like ticks and fleas from from invading your dog’s body on those areas they cannot see.

Do Dogs Actually Like That?

Now that you know the real reason dog’s wag their leg when you scratch them you’re probably wondering, “do dog’s actually being stimulated that way?”

Every dog is different, so it’s a case-by-case situation. Some dogs enjoy that scratch reflex, while others might not like it at all. If a dog rolls over while you are scratching or rubbing them, that’s a sign that they like it and want you to continue. On the other hand, if a dog moves away while you are scratching or rubbing them, there’s a good chance that is unwelcome.

Written by Vincent M.

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