Do dogs blush?

By Jennifer Stoeckl, MAT - Dire Wolf Project CEO, Feb. 8, 2024
Miss Cindy Sue.jpg
Miss Cindy Sue

"If beauty were time, you'd be an eternity"

His eyes linger on yours as he takes your hand.

You hold your breath.

He draws you closer, placing his arm securely around your waist.

You can feel his heartbeat, a rhythmic echo that seems to synchronize with the unspoken connection between you.

Your cheeks warm and a rosy hue emerges.

You have been taken over by his romantic charm.


This involuntary reaction to an intense feeling of nervous excitement and joy is a common occurrence in humans.


Can dogs blush?

Many say blushing is a uniquely human trait.

To date, no scientific evidence exists that animals can blush.

In fact, in Darwin’s words, “Blushing is the most peculiar and the most human of all expressions.”

At the physiological level, blushing can be understood as the release of adrenaline in response to an emotional trigger.

The adrenaline causes the dilation of the capillaries that carry blood to the body, including the skin.

The increased blood from dilated blood vessels brought closer to the skin’s surface is what causes the blush.

Of course, dogs have fur covering their cheeks, so we can’t physically see whether a color change happens in response to intense emotions.


A secondary effect of the blush is how the cheeks become warmer to the touch.

And, that can definitely be a reaction we can experience.

The first time I ever considered such a thing in dogs was around eight years ago.

I was speaking with a professional groomer friend, and she swore she felt a warm temperature change in a dog’s cheeks when she would love on them.

At the time, I just dismissed it as a myth.

And perhaps it is.

But, all I know is… after that conversation, I started paying attention to the temperature changes on a dog’s face when we were snuggling.


One day, I felt it, too.


Now I don’t know if it could ever be officially measured, but I now swear it happens after experiencing it myself.

So, go ahead.

Whisper sweet nothings in your dog’s ear and see if your dog blushes.

If you do experience a temperature change on your dog’s face, I would be super curious to hear about it.

Speaking of love and affection, the spring puppy season is almost upon us.

Get prepared for a new tail-wagging friend to grace your life with love.

You must be on the waiting list to be assured to receive the type of puppy you want.

The first step is to complete the puppy adoption questionnaire and become approved.

Once approved, you can place your non-refundable $600 deposit to secure your spot in line on the waiting list.

Here is the link to begin the questionnaire:

Jennifer Stoeckl is the co-founder of the Dire Wolf Project, founder of the DireWolf Guardians American Dirus Dog Training Program, and owner/operator of DireWolf Dogs of Vallecito. She lives in the beautiful inland northwest among the Ponderosa pine forests with her pack of American Dirus dogs.