Are Pitbull’s Affectionate Dogs? [Yes, + How They Show It]


Pitbull’s are one of the best dogs you can choose to adopt and are often overlooked as a loving companion and family pet.

While they are certainly a popular dog breed, they have still had their times throughout history, where people may have feared that aggression was an issue with Pitbull’s.

It often leads an individual considering adopting a new Pitbull to have several questions beforehand.

One of the questions is simple, and most potential dog owners want to know before going through with the adoption.

Are Pitbull’s affectionate dogs?

I had the same kinds of questions about my Terrier, and after years of owning a Terrier myself, here is what I can tell you on this topic.

Pitbull’s are very affectionate and loyal dogs. Pitbull’s, like many terrier dogs’ breeds, crave the attention of their family, owners, and human interaction. Pitbull’s have a strong desire to please their owners and have a strong bond, love, and protective nature of their immediate caregivers and family members.

Pitbull’s find a way to be much more affectionate than many may believe.

I know from firsthand experience for two reasons.

First and foremost, I own a Terrier myself, and terrier dog breeds present with many similar characteristics.

Secondly, Pitbull’s are a dog I am around nearly every week.

Our best friends for the past 8 years that we met through our employment are Pitbull owners so naturally when you see each other several times a week, it’s not even a thought to bring your dog with you and let the dogs interact with one another and each other’s kids.

Simply meaning, myself, my wife, and my son are consistently around a male Pitbull terrier named Tyson and have watched him grow from a puppy to the 8-year-old loyal and affectionate dog he is today.

That is why I find it essential to break down this topic of affection with Pitbull’s for all of you considering a Pitbull today.

To streamline the process and present the information on this topic in the easiest to navigate way, I have placed links and a quick table of contents directly below outlining what I plan to discuss:

If you do not have the time to read the entire post about Pitbull’s and how affectionate they are and can be, feel free to use that table above to skip around throughout the post.

Otherwise, give me 2 minutes and I will explain everything I know about Pitbull’s and how affectionate they can be.

Are Pitbull’s Affectionate Overview

Pitbull’s, in my opinion, are one of the most under-rated dog breeds you can choose to adopt.

Maybe this is because, for a few years, aggression made the headlines, and maybe they just do not fit the personality of a lot of dog owners that may have been considering a Pitbull at one point in time.

I honestly do not know the reasoning behind it.

Still, I do know that they make for excellent and affectionate pets.

I do not think I have met a dog that is more obedient and affectionate.

I know that part of it, when owning any breed of Terrier, comes down to the training, socialization, and process you implement to groom your Pitbull into the obedient and loyal dog that they are capable of becoming.

Pitbull’s strive to work and have a strong athletic ability, so they do need the ability to burn off some steam to become the dog they were bred to become.

No matter how you spin it, with a little bit of work, love, and patience, a Pitbull can become one of the most affectionate and loving dogs you can own.

Now, I want to move into the ways that Pitbull’s show affection and love towards their owners.

How Pitbull’s Show Affection

Pitbull’s show affection in many ways.

In general, Pitbull’s have an incredibly strong love for their owners.

While all Pitbulls will be different with their personality, some of the ways they show affection will likely always remain the same.

Here is what I mean.

Expert Cuddly Snuggly Dogs

That is right and maybe a surprise to some of you.

The Pitbull is an overly cuddly dog.

If you are sitting on the couch or even about to call it a night and go to sleep, your Pitbull will want to remain by your side and cuddle up.

Pitbull’s struggle to be away from their owners or family, and you will frequently catch them migrating towards human interaction and finding a way to sit or lay as close to you as possible.

For those of you who are trying to train your dog to remain off furniture, make sure you begin training this into your pit at a young age.

Otherwise, their affectionate and loving side will make it tough for them to stay away from you.

Kissing and Licking Like A Champion

Pitbull’s are also a big fan of showing affection through licking and kissing.

These dogs, once they have built a bond and love with their family, will love to meet you and greet you with a heavy dose of licking and kissing.

Be sure to show some love back by petting and showing affection.

Staying by Your Side No Matter Where You Go

Pitbull’s are also quite the follower type of dog breed like many terriers.

Their loyalty, protective nature, and affection make it tough for them to remain sidelined when you get up and start moving around.

Be prepared as a Pitbull owner to have your Pitbull follow you through the house and remain by your side no matter where you go or what you are doing.

It is second nature to a Pitbull, and they feel obligated to remain by your side.

A sign of loyalty and affection if you ask me.

Protecting and Hovering Around the Kids

This is one of my favorite traits of all terriers, including Pitbull’s.

If you have young kids, do not worry.

Your Pitbull can become your new guardian and protector of the kids.

Even when my own son is around Tyson (the Pitbull), he remains interested in only being around him and following him everywhere.

Naturally, Pitbull’s make excellent guard dogs in this respect.

They like to ensure that anyone that they care about remains protected and safe.

Greeting You When Returning Home

Pitbull’s when they are young, may even struggle when you are away from home.

I have a detailed guide on this topic about how long you can leave a Pitbull alone for that you can see here.

However, once the initial separation anxiety has subsided, Pitbull’s become fully capable of remaining at home alone and are ready to show affection by greeting you enthusiastically when you return home.

If you have had a tough day at work or whatever the case is, you can feel good knowing that you have a loving companion ready to greet you, sit with you, and show affection for as long as you are willing to receive it.

Now that we have some examples about how Pitbull’s will show affection and how affectionate they can be let’s discuss how you can build the bond with your Pitbull even further to increase the affection they show.

What You Can Do to Build the Bond Further

Pitbull’s need an authoritative figure in the home, and they need training.

Starting when a Pitbull is young and giving them this guidance is going to help your bond grow and ultimately help your Pitbull become a more obedient dog and have more respect towards you.

Interact with your Pitbull often.

Get them out and exercise with them.

Remember, terriers are naturally a high-energy dog, and they love to burn off some steam.

They also love any attention you are willing to show them.

Take the time early on to interact with them, show them love, and show them the way you want them to behave in the home.

The more you do this, the stronger the bond is ultimately going to be.

If you are looking for a calm demeanor Pitbull that shows affection, be sure to display this in the home by not riling them up on a frequent basis.

Remember, Pitbull’s wants to please and impress their owners, and if you are willing to work with them, they learn quickly and will show you affection in return.

Are Pitbull’s Affectionate Towards Other Pets

Pitbull’s often grow to become affectionate towards other pets.

The key to ensuring that this is a smooth process is introducing your Pitbull to other pets at a young age to get the socialization process started early.

While Pitbull’s may not have issues if you start the process later, it is still always better to socialize a Pitbull or any terrier for that matter with other pets, humans, and children starting at a young age.

If you have another dog or even a cat and want to adopt a Pitbull, you should not be overly concerned with your Pitbull being receptive, protective, or affectionate towards another pet’s in the household.

Again, refer to proper training and discipline beginning at young ages for the best results with these introductions and lifetime of having the two pet’s co-habitat under the same roof.

Are Pitbull’s Affectionate Enough to Be Around Young Children?

Pitbull’s are affectionate and loving towards children.

They love the attention a young child can provide them, but they should be introduced at a young age if possible.

They also need supervision and should not be left alone with young kids.

Especially in the younger years.

This is a tip for all dog owners.

Not just for the Pitbull owners reading today.

Nonetheless, young kids typically do excellent with Pitbull’s with supervision, ground rules, and training.

They will become protective of the children in the home and make for a loving and affectionate companion for years to come.

Are Pitbull’s Affectionate and Friendly with Neighbors and Friends?

Yes, Pitbull’s can also be very affectionate toward family and friends.

This is another one of those situations where it is best to train your Pitbull to be socialized around other individuals at young ages.

If you do this and follow that advice, you will reduce the amount of jumping and excitement your Pitbull has when other individuals are around.

Pitbull’s in general, if raised correctly, are affectionate towards anyone that is willing to show a just a moment of attention and love towards them.

They are, without a doubt, a people-loving and affectionate dog.

Case closed.

Do Pitbull’s Have A Favorite Person?

Yes, Pitbull’s will often favor the individual in the family that interacted and trained them most.

They will take a strong liking towards their owners and the alpha in the family.

While I would not necessarily call it a favorite in the family or a favorite person, they will definitely have a person that they respect the most and tend to be the most obedient and loyal when they are around.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, this post has made it clear that Pitbull’s are very affectionate and loving dogs.

They crave the attention of their owners and want to do anything they can to please you and interact with you.

They need some training, discipline, and some love in return, but nonetheless, Pitbull’s make for one of the best dogs you can choose to adopt and one of the top terrier dog breeds if you ask me.

Luna and I wish you the best of luck with your Pitbull’s and the journey you have ahead of you.

Share Your Thoughts

Do you have anything further you think should be mentioned about Pitbull’s being affectionate dogs?

What other ways has your Pitbull showed affection towards you and other family members?

Be sure to share those thoughts, stories, and concerns by dropping a comment below.

As always, Luna and I appreciate you stopping by and reading today, and we will see you again next time.

Josh Martin- Founder and Creator of Terrier Owner

Josh Martin is the proud owner of a female Jack Russell Terrier Named Luna. Josh founded TerrierOwner.com to share the stories of owning a Terrier and to help all terrier owners with the struggles, excitement and common questions that come with being a new terrier parent.

Recent Posts