(NBC) - We humans show affection by hugging.
However, when dogs are the object of our affection, apparently the feeling is not mutual.
New science shows dogs actually hate to be hugged.
Researchers scoured the internet for hundreds of pictures of people hugging their dogs.
The animals typically show stress when they lower and turn their heads away, show the whites of their eyes or flatten their ears down.
In the pictures, more than 80 percent of the dogs showed at least one sign of stress.
Experts say a good belly rub or ear scratch may be the best way to show dogs we love them.
This study is from Dr. Stanley Coren of the University of British Columbia and published in Psychology Today.