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9 Dog Breeds that Use Their Paws like Hands

Bulldog with head tilted looking at camera

Dog breeds can use their paws for all kinds of purposes depending upon their nature and training. Likewise, the use of paws is also dependent on the type of breed under discussion. Based on their unique personalities, canines can have different sizes and shapes of their paws.

Other than walking, dogs use their paws for communication, gaining attention, or holding (a bone). Some of the breeds can also use their paws like hands for performing tasks, like opening a door. The following is a list of dog breeds that can use their paws like hands.


Akita on nature trail

These dogs have a big and muscular body. These physical characteristics make them ideal for guarding. Akitas have a very loving attitude towards their owners and love to play around with them. The game of fetch is probably their favorite activity.

Akitas are very loyal to their owners and can do anything to please them. They are not afraid of any challenge and are always determined to learn new things. That’s the reason why these powerful canines can use their paws like hands. For example, they can open doors and drink water from a tap by using their paws.

American Bulldog

Close up of an American Bulldog

These muscular canines were originally developed for helping the farmers. American Bulldogs are often referred to as family dogs because of their protective and loving attitude. They love to jog and want to make fine buddies.

An American Bulldog requires more attention from his/her owner because he/she can get bored if left alone. Just like humans, these pups use their paws to communicate with their loved ones. Indulging in a destructive activity is the first sign that your pup is getting bored. Therefore, make sure that your pet is always occupied to eliminate the possibility of negative behavior.


Beagle with head out of car window

These scent hounds were primarily bred for hunting hares. Although they are small, Beagles are active companions, especially for the kids. Some of these canines can be a little stubborn and may require special attention. Train them with patience and they will soon learn good manners.

Beagles want attention from their owners because they need a lot of exercise to avoid destructive behavior. They love to play a catching game, like catching a small ball. The surprising thing about Beagles is that they can use their paws (instead of the mouth) to catch the ball. 


Portrait of a Boxer dog outside in nature

This dog breed is very famous for their guarding abilities because of their energetic nature. Although they can be dangerous to strangers, Boxers have a fine sense of humor for their people. They are perfect companions for families because of their loyal and loving nature.

Boxers are fond of vocalizing with some fun roars and can also use their paws like hands for picking up microphones (if available). They can also use their paws for pinning down other dogs.

German Shepherd

German Shepherd laying in grass

These intelligent and energetic dogs are very useful for tracing suspects because of their excellent sniffing ability. That’s the reason why German Shepherds are often seen working as police dogs. These pups shouldn’t be left alone for long spells because they can get bored. This usually instigates them to create havoc by barking and digging (using their paws).

German Shepherds are always active and ready to explore new things. They love to jog and play a Frisbee game in which the owner throws a Frisbee and they catch it. In addition to their mouth, these dogs can also pick the Frisbee with their paws.

Golden Retriever

Golden Retriever portrait outside in nature

Thanks to its tolerable attitude and friendly nature, this is the most popular dog breed in the world. Golden Retrievers are regarded as amazing family dogs due to these characteristics. In addition to that, they are used for hunting and tracking purposes, especially by law enforcement forces. Golden Retrievers are quite similar to humans when it comes to retrieving a tossed ball by using their paws (like hands).

Labrador Retriever

3 Labrador Retrievers, Brown, White, and Black laying in grass

This breed is so popular that it is quite easy to recognize even for non-dog people. Labrador Retrievers are very loyal to their owners and can be an ideal companion for young children.

They are also quite proficient in dog sports because of their muscular and agile body. Labs are particularly keen about water sports, like dock diving, as they love to play in the water. Due to their amazing skills in the water, they can also help you in fishing (transporting nets and fetching ropes). Sometimes, they may also catch fish for their owners (and themselves) by using their paws like hands.


Side shot of Pug's head

These small canines are perfect for those people who have space issues (apartment life). The hilarious and cute face of a Pug will surely make you smile and take your attention in no time. These loving and playful canines can’t be left alone because they are prone to separation anxiety.

Pugs love to play several interesting games that involve the use of their paws. They like to spin and do other silly moves that make them the center of attraction.

Shiba Inu

Shiba Inu laying on wooded trail

The face of Shiba Inu resembles very closely to a fox. These canines are very common in Japan because it is the place of their origination. This breed is also nicknamed as the ninja warrior because of its sharp movements and alertness.

Shiba Inu is also a good dog for families because of its utmost loyalty. Likewise, they do very well with small children. Other than that, they can also be used as watchdogs because Shiba Inus are good at hunting and fighting.

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