Something to think about... Have you noticed that in paintings of men and their dogs in them...that the dog is under the chair or beside the chair, but usually never is the man touching the dog? It's his best friend, too. It's a male thing.
On the other hand usually in the portraits of women and their dog her hand is resting on it's head or back. I saw one of a Westie recently and a officer and the dog was under the chair! I must do a westie (West Highland Terrier) and a proper gentleman painting.
The most memorable pictures of men are usually when they are tenderly holding, say a child, helping a lady or such.