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9 Reasons Why Your German Shepherd Leans On You

9 Reasons Why Your German Shepherd Leans On You

If you’re the lucky owner of a GSD puppy, you may have noticed that your fluffy pal has a tendency to lean on you. 

But why does your German Shepherd lean on you? Is it because he is feeling affectionate, seeking attention, or is there another reason altogether? 

Buckle up because we are about to explore the 9 possible reasons why your German Shepherd may be leaning on you! 

#1 He Wants To Use You As A Scratching Post

german shepherd dog leaning on his owner

Move over, hooman scratching post, there’s an itchy German Shepherd in town! 

Your pup probably sees you as a giant, human-sized scratching post, and he wants to rub his fur all over you until he’s squeaky clean (or until you’re covered in dog hair, whichever comes first). 

#2 Practicing His “Leaning Tower Of Pisa” Pose

german shepherd climbing on his owner and looking into camera
Source: Facebook 

If your German Shepherd leans on you like he’s practicing how to pose in front of the Tower of Pisa, don’t worry, he’s not trying to tip you over. 

He’s just working on his balance and coordination, and he knows that you’re the pawfect partner who will help him achieve that cool photo! 

#3 Trying To Assert His Dominance

Your German Shepherd may be trying to assert his dominance by leaning on you, but let’s be real, he’s about as dominant as a fluffy marshmallow. 

He just wants to be close to you and show you how much he loves you, even if it means using you as a human leaning post! 

On the more serious side, if this behavior takes some weird turns, then you should know how to show dominance to your dog.

#4 Secretly Auditioning For A Job As A Pawfessional Wrestler

german shepherd dog playing with his owners in the snow

If your German Shepherd is using you as a wrestling partner, don’t be alarmed, he’s not being aggressive. He is just secretly auditioning for a job as a pawfessional wrestler! 

He wants to show off his moves and make you laugh at the same time, and he knows that the best way to do that is by playfully leaning on you and pretending to pin you down. 

Hold on tight, your GSD is trying to impress you with his strength by seeing how much he can make you wobble!

#5 He Just Really Likes You And The Way You Smell 

german shepherd puppy sniffing his owner

If your German Shepherd can’t get enough of your scent, it’s not because you need a shower (well, maybe you do, but that’s beside the point). 

He just loves you and the way you smell, and he wants to be as close to you as possible! Just try not to let it go to your head too much, okay?

#6 He Thinks You’re A Giant Pillow

german shepherd dog lying on his owner  in the trunk of a car

If you think your German Shepherd is a huge fluffy pillow, he may also see you as one! You may not be as fluffy, but to him, you are a cuddly pillow with arms and legs. 

He wants to curl up and snuggle with you, so he leans on you because you’re his own personal cuddle buddy. I mean, who can resist a good snuggle? 

Just don’t be surprised if you wake up covered in dog drool and hair the next morning!

#7 He’s Trying To Hide Behind You


When your big #germanshepherd is afraid of your little #cat She’s too scared to go by her 🤣 #dogsoftiktok #catsoftiktok #catmom #dogmom #funnycat

♬ original sound – Shannon Asbury

If your German Shepherd is using you as a human shield, it’s not because he’s afraid of the big, bad world (or maybe he is, we won’t judge). He just sees you as a safe haven and wants to hide behind you to feel protected and secure. 

Plus, you’re probably the biggest thing around so what better place to hide behind than your body?

Is he afraid of the cat? Or maybe the noisy vacuum made him lose his mind? There can be a lot of random things your big GSD could be afraid of! 

#8 He Is A Big Fan Of The Movie “Titanic”

german shepherd titanic meme
Source: Facebook 

Your German Shepherd may not be able to quote every line from “Titanic” (yet), but he’s definitely a big fan of the famous scene where Jack and Rose lean over the bow of the ship. 

He wants to recreate that romantic moment with you, so he leans on you like he’s flying (or sinking, depending on how you look at it)!

#9 He Thinks You Are A Human Vending Machine

german shepherd leaning on woman's hand and looking at her

Your German Shepherd leans on you like he’s trying to shake loose a treat or a toy, and he knows that if he keeps leaning long enough, something good is bound to come out. 

You better have some yummy food at hand!

In Conclusion

As Bill Withers sings, “Lean on me, when you’re not strong, and I’ll be your friend, I’ll help you carry on.” 

Dogs are incredibly perceptive animals, and they can sense when we need support, comfort, or just a furry shoulder to lean on.

So, why does your German Shepherd lean on you? It could be because he senses that you’re upset, and wants to calm you down. It could also be the other way around! But, who knows, maybe he is trying to hide behind you from their arch-nemesis, the vacuum cleaner!

Whatever the reason may be, just remember that your GSD loves you to the moon and back, and leaning on you is most likely his way of showing it!

Read Next: Are German Shepherds Good For First Time Owners Or Not?