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What is Doggy Style?

Medically Reviewed by Dan Brennan, MD on June 28, 2021

Doggy style is a sex position in which the person penetrating stands or kneels behind their partner. The classic form of doggy style is when the person who is receiving is on all fours. But changes can be made to make it more pleasurable for you and your partner if that doesn’t work.

How Does It Work?

The basic doggy style position requires the person receiving to kneel on all fours. Then, the person penetrating gets behind them and puts their penis into the vagina or anus. For some people, it can take some adjustment to find the most comfortable position.

Instead of getting on all fours on the bed or floor, the receiver can also bend over a piece of furniture. Keep in mind that for the most comfort, the furniture should be at the right height for the person giving penetration.

Another variation is for the receiver to lie down flat on their stomach. Putting a pillow under the hips in this position can sometimes make for a more pleasurable angle.

Standing is another variation of the doggy style position. The receiver will stand and bend over slightly, holding onto a wall for support. This is easiest when both partners are close in height.

Myths About Doggy Style

It's Only For Vaginal Sex

Doggy style is a position that works for vaginal or anal sex. And people with vaginas can penetrate their partners with strap-ons if both agree.

Doggy Style Can't Be Intimate

Some people report that doggy style is not intimate because they can't see their partner's face. However, sex experts have some suggestions to make it more intimate. Consider some of these tips:

  • Have the penetrating partner wrap their arms around the receiver's body.
  • Place a mirror in front of both of you so you can look at each other's faces in the mirror.
  • Lie flat on the bed for more skin-to-skin contact.

How to Try Doggy Style Safely

Sex experts say to stay positive and open-minded when talking to your partner about trying new sex positions. Focus on aspects of your sex life that you do enjoy, then discuss why you'd like to try a new position.

Talking to Your Partner About Trying Doggy Style

It’s crucial to make sure each partner feels comfortable and valued during conversations about sex, as well as during the act of sex. Begin with positivity and curiosity, and outline some rules for safety, comfort, and pleasure as you try the new position.

Experts also recommend carving out a specific time to talk. Make sure your partner is ready and willing to have the conversation. Give them time to think about it and become comfortable with the suggestion.

Possible Risks

Doggy style is an easy position to switch between the anus and vagina. However, it’s important to remember to switch condoms to avoid spreading bacteria from the anus to the vagina. This can cause a urinary tract infection or yeast infection.

Penile fractures are a rare injury. However, doggy style is the second-most likely position to cause one. So, it’s best to move slow and ensure that each partner is comfortable during sex.

If you are uncomfortable in doggy style, try putting a pillow under your knees or elbows. Try holding on to the headboard or back of a couch for support. 

WebMD Medical Reference

Sources

SOURCES:

Women's Health: "21 Ways to Make Doggy-Style Sex Feel ~Infinitely~ Better."

Shape: "7 Reasons to Give Doggy Style Sex Another Shot."

Cosmopolitan: "Doggy-Style."

Stylecaster: "Eager to Try Something New in Bed? 7 Ways to Talk to Your Partner About It."

Psychology Today: "Four Rules for a Productive Sex Talk with your Partner."

Cosmopolitan: "13 Things You Didn't Know About Doggy-Style Sex."

Bustle: "7 Hacks To Make This Sex Position Even Better."

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