This will be a controversial thread..but do all dogs have to be happy to be petted by strangers? And if they do not like that do you need to consult behaviourist? (I do not mean show dogs!) I had non cuddly non touchy-feely dogs..there was one who was very protective, very obedient and caring dog..but he definetly not encouraged familiarities..choosing himself whom he wants to be friends with...and his warnings were clear enough to put off anyone attempting... never bit ayone except when a man crept into our walled garden...and dog stopped him..the yells of the man actually alarmed us that someone sneaked in! another time a man tried to hit him with a plank and dog grabbed his wrist making him drop the wood.. he was laika type spitz like dog..maybe it comes with that kind eastren spitz character? So some dogs will rather be left alone..Scrip is shy with strangers and it is best if allowed time to get used to the newcomer before any contact is made... I think itis allright to say Do not touch my dog!..or "Wait till he comes to you", and I think the theory that it is a projectionof the owner personality is rubbish! : Cheeky loved everyone and was delighted to be petted..welcome all!