Questioning if my dog loves me is pretty much rhetorical for me. No need for my pup to answer this question. I know my dog’s love runs deeper than the treats in my pocket. Since Valentine’s Day 2021 is coming up in a couple weeks, I wanted to explore the true love our dog is really feeling. And while I know dog moms are pretty much as intuitive as science, don’t take my word for it. Here are common questions and answers if dogs feel love from their human, if our pups like and understand us, and facts that support the love we know our dogs undoubtingly have for their dog moms. These are answered from the perspectives of neuroscientists, researchers, and studies (and supported by dog moms.)

My conclusion? This is not conditional behavior – it’s unconditional love! So go ahead this Valentine’s Day and celebrate the love you and your pup have for each other!

Does my dog know that I love them?

Dogs win our hearts – and we win theirs in return.” No other inter-species oxytocin link has ever been observed, so the dog-human bond, for now, is a truly unique thing. It should also put a lot of sceptics at ease: dogs really do love us as deeply as we love them. – RT.com

Do dogs really bond with their owners?

These results demonstrate that the mother-child and mother-dog bond share aspects of emotional experience and patterns of brain function. –PLOS One Journal

Does my dog miss me when I leave?

What’s so interesting there is that the reward center of a dog’s brain lights up to both of those signals. And in most cases – not all cases – in most cases, the center lights up more intensely when the dog is given a signal that means your human is just around the corner than when the dog is given a signal that means a piece of hot dog is just on its way to you. -Clive Wynne on NPR

Does my dog think I am their real mom?

Dogs interact with their human caregivers in the same way babies do their parents. When dogs are scared or worried, they run to their owners, just as distressed toddlers make a beeline for their parents. This is in stark contrast to other domesticated animals: Petrified cats, as well as horses, will run away. –Mic

Do dogs really love their owners back?

“Of course dogs love their people!” animal behavior consultant Amy Shojai tells Inverse. “The hormone oxytocin is released (in both dogs and people) when they interact/have contact with someone they like. This ‘love hormone’ helps cement and increase the bond we share … it’s also the hormone that floods the system of new moms to amp up attachment to new babies.” –Inverse

Does my dog love me when he looks at me in the eyes?

The impact of a healthy dog-human relationship is an idea that science supports. A few years ago, a study found that “mutual gazing” into each other’s eyes increases oxytocin levels in both. –Dogs Naturally Magazine

Does my dog love everyone?

Dogs’ love is enthusiastic but not discriminating. In fact, a dog doesn’t even care if you are human. Scientists are studying what popular culture has observed for years: Dogs are eager to adapt to any species. They have been known to bond with sheep, goats, and even penguins in exactly the same way as humans –Aleteia

Does my dog know that I love them by looking at me?

Study found dogs can recognize human emotions on our faces. The researchers positioned pictures of happy and sad human faces in front of each test dog, and played a happy or angry human voice in an unfamiliar language. The dogs looked at the face that matched the tone of the voice more often. –ABC.net