Why Does My Rottweiler Stare At Me? (Veterinarian Reviewed)

rottweiler staring at camera from a field
<a href="https://notabully.org/author/dr-nita-patel" target="_blank" rel="noopener">     <span style="font-size: 21px; color: black;">Fact Checked & Reviewed By: </span>     <strong style="font-size: 20px; color: black;">Dr. Nita Vasudevan Patel, DVM, MS</strong> </a>

Dr. Patel is a Florida-based veterinarian with over half a decade of experience.

<a href="https://notabully.org/author/dr-nita-patel" target="_blank" rel="noopener">     <span style="font-size: 19px; color: black;">Fact Checked & Reviewed By: </span>     <strong style="font-size: 19px; color: black;">Dr. Nita Vasudevan Patel, DVM, MS</strong> </a>
Fact Checked & Reviewed By: Dr. Nita Vasudevan Patel, DVM, MS

Dr. Patel is a Florida-based veterinarian with over half a decade of experience.

Even though Rottweilers are known for their impressive stature, they often have a gentle and loving disposition towards their families. One common thing that many Rottweiler owners notice is their dog’s tendency to stare right at them. It can be a little confusing and disconcerting when a 100-pound Rottweiler is staring you down.

Rottweilers stare at their owners for different reasons. Sometimes Rotties are trying to communicate that they’re hungry, they want attention, or that they love you. Other times, they may be looking for assurance, direction during training, or to understand what you are doing. Rarely, do Rotties stare at their owners as a sign of aggression. 

In this article we’ll explore the various reasons behind this behavior, shedding light on what your Rottweiler may be trying to convey through those intense eyes.

Reason 1: They’re Trying To Tell You Something

Even though they lack words, dogs are often excellent at communicating with their humans. One of the biggest reasons why your Rottweiler stares at you is that they’re trying to convey a message. A stare is a way for your Rottweiler to get your attention and let you know that they need something.

Here are some of the things your Rottie might be “saying” when they stare at you.

They Love You

It seems kind of silly at first, but dogs will stare into the eyes of someone that they adore, just like humans!

Great Pyrenees are known to stare at their owners with soft loving eyes. This is one of the ways that these dogs convey affection, and Rotties are no different. It’s been shown that mutual staring between owners and dogs can release oxytocin in the brain. Oxytocin is also known as the love hormone. This chemical can help boost, bonding and feelings of love and trust. It’s the same hormone that’s released when a mother looks at her child.

So, if your dog stares at you, they might just be telling you they love you.

They Want Food

Rottweilers are big, strong dogs, and tend to have hearty appetites. Even when they’re already full, these dogs love to beg for food.

When your Rottweiler stares at you while you’re eating or preparing food, it’s often a clear indication that they’re hoping for a bite. Dogs can be quite persuasive with their eyes and they’ve learned that this behavior can yield delicious results.

They Want Attention

Another thing that Rottweilers are trying to communicate when they stare at you is that they need attention.

Rottweilers are social dogs and enjoy being in the company of their family. When your Rottweiler stares at you and you’re not giving them the attention they desire, it’s their way of saying “Hey, don’t forget about me! ” this behavior is especially common when you’ve been away for some time or if they’re feeling a bit neglected.

To address this need for attention, it’s important to always make time for play, walks, and cuddles with your Rottweiler. Remember that their stare is a call for interaction and providing them with the attention they crave can strengthen your bond and make them feel more secure and content.

Reason 2: They’re Looking For Reassurance While Pooing

Did you know that dogs stare at you while pooping because they trust you?

This behavior is weird!  But when you look closely at it, it actually makes perfect sense.

When a dog poops it’s actually a very vulnerable moment. While pooping, a dog isn’t able to respond defensively or offensively to a threat. This is why some dogs will hide or only poop in specific places where they feel safe. But if you’re around, your dog will likely look towards you as a source of protection.

If your Rottweiler stares at you while they are relieving themselves as a sign of trust in you and feel safe in your presence. You can further reassure your dog by maintaining eye contact with them while they do their business and helping them stay calm

Reason 3: They’re Looking For Direction During Training

Rottweilers are intelligent working dogs. Because of their high level of intelligence, they’re actually fairly easy to train. Naturally, a dog that’s motivated, will often seek guidance from their owner.

When your Rottweiler stares at you during a training session, it’s a good sign that they’re looking for cues on what to do next. They may be trying to understand your commands and body language to make sure they’re on the right track.

You can see in the video below that even in this Rottie’s first week of training, she is laser-focused on her owner!

This sort of staring is a positive form of communication as it indicates that your dog is actively engaged in the training process. You can reinforce this behavior by using clear and consistent commands and rewarding your Rottweiler for their efforts.

Reason 4: They’re Trying To Understand What You’re Doing

When Rottweilers stare at you, they might actually be trying to understand what you’re saying to them.

This is sort of an opposite form of communication where instead of staring to tell you they need something, they’re actually staring at you to figure out what you need.

Dogs are naturally curious animals and Rottweilers are no exception. In fact, Rottweilers are more sensitive and empathetic than most dogs. When they stare at you, especially when you’re engaged in activity, it may be their way of trying to comprehend what’s happening. They want to be a part of your world and understand how things work.

This behavior is often seen in young Rottweilers as they explore their environment and learn from observing their owners. Encourage this curiosity by involving them in safe and age-appropriate activities, which can be an excellent way to bond with your pet.

Reason 5: They Might Be Acting Aggressively

The last reason that Rottweiler stare at their owners is probably the least common reason.

Every once in a while, a Rottweiler may stare at someone in an aggressive manner. This is a common scare tactic in other guardian dogs like German shepherds.

Though Rotties are known for their loyalty and affection, they can also display protective instincts. When a Rottweiler stares at you with a fixed and intense gaze, it could be a sign that they’re assessing you as a potential threat or reacting to perceived danger. Your dog may have turned this stare on you because they think you’re threatening another member of the family and are responding protectively.

In a situation like this, it’s very important to pay attention to your dog’s body language. Aggressive behavior may be accompanied by raised hackles, growling, and a stiff posture. Dr. Nita Patel adds, “An aggressive Rottweiler may display “whale eyes” (showing the whites of their eyes while their head is turned away but still maintaining eye contact), often accompanied by intense staring and dilated pupils.”

It’s crucial to intervene and ensure that your Rottweiler feels secure without resorting to aggressive behavior. It’s easy for a stare to escalate to a growl, to then escalate to a bite. And, since Rottweilers have such a strong bite force, you won’t want the situation to go that far.

Should You Be Worried If Your Rottweiler Stares At You?

In most cases, you don’t need to worry if your Rottweiler is staring at you. Most likely they’re showing affection and curiosity or desire for attention. However, as we just talked about, there are some instances where excessive staring may indicate aggression. At that point, you would need to intervene and make sure the aggressive staring doesn’t escalate.

There’s also one other reason why you might want to be worried if your Rottweiler suddenly starts staring at you.

Cognitive Dysfunction In Rottweilers

Cognitive dysfunction is often referred to as doggy dementia and is a condition that affects older dogs, including Rottweilers. One of the signs of cognitive dysfunction is increased confusion and altered behavior. If your senior Rottweiler suddenly starts staring at you more and more, it could be a sign of cognitive dysfunction.

Other symptoms of cognitive dysfunction include disorientation, loss of house training, changes in sleep patterns, and reduced interest in activities. Simply staring at you probably isn’t enough of a sign to indicate doggy dementia. But, if you suspect your Rottie may be experiencing cognitive dysfunction, consult your veterinarian for guidance on managing and improving their quality of life

Final Thoughts

The reasons why your Rottweiler stares at you can be diverse, and they often depend on the context of your dog’s individual personality. It’s crucial to pay attention to your Rottweiler’s overall body language, as it can help you decipher their intentions and emotional state.

For the most part, your Rottweiler’s stare is a sign of love, trust, or a request for interaction. To create a strong bond with your pet you should always try to respond to their needs to make sure they feel safe, seen, and understood. If you notice any significant changes in their behavior, particularly in older dogs, consult with your veterinarian to rule out any underlying health issues.

Hopefully, this article has helped you to understand and appreciate your Rottweiler’s communication style a little bit more.

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