Dogs see the world very differently than we do. However, they still rely on their body language to communicate. Read on to find out exactly how they make their feelings and emotions known through their actions. Some of these are most definitely surprising.
On Hind Legs
There are a few possible reasons that a dog would stand up on its hind legs. It’s most likely to show affection. Just like humans, they simply want a hug sometimes. However, this action can also show playfulness when they’re around other dogs. As long as they’re not acting aggressive or growling, they’re probably only playing.
Puppies tend to chew on various things when they’re teething. However, it could also mean something else when they’re not puppies anymore. This doesn’t mean they’re bad dogs. There’s a good chance they’re simply not getting the amount of physical activity that they need. A good way to treat this is by taking them out for a walk. If your dog starts chewing on your furniture, it’s time to give it exercise.
How They Bark
There are multiple reasons why a dog would bark. If it sounds loud and is frequent, it could be something urgent. They might be sensing danger and trying to tell this to you. Shorter and softer barks can mean that they want to play. Loud barking can also indicate that they’re in pain. Make sure to pay attention to see which it might be.
Bringing You Toys
When your dog has a toy in their mouth, don’t assume they want to play. One theory says they are trying to please you by doing this. The dog considers you to be the alpha and it wants your respect. Another theory claims that this is how your dog shows that it trusts you. It trusts you so much that it brings you a valuable object. Of course, it could also mean that it loves you so much that it wants you to enjoy their prized possession. You might hurt their feelings by not taking the toy.
When Dogs Yawn
When humans yawn, it’s usually because they’re either bored or tired. Dogs, on the other hand, yawn when they feel safe and secure. In their case, it’s a sign of submission. If you see a dog yawning several times in a row, it means they’re relaxed. However, it can also mean they’re stressed or showing anticipation. When a dog is at the vet, numerous yawns can reflect their nervousness. When they do the same before going out for a walk, it could be a way they’re keeping their enthusiasm in check as well. Just like humans, they also yawn to show how tired they are.
Like A Caterpillar
Don’t you love it when your dog gets a good wiggle, kicks up their legs and wiggle on their back? We can’t think of anything else to make us happier. There are times when the dog does it to scratch an itch, but it’s possible that they only want to get your attention. Take some time to shower them with love!
Before You Go
Just like everyone else, you probably feel guilty about leaving your pet at home when you leave for work. Some people spend money on doggy daycares to feel better about it. When your pup makes that sad face, you’ll understand why. At times, they’ll wear a calm face, but there’s no need to worry. Your dog knows you’ll be back soon enough. That face is a sign of trust, not sadness.
Pacing Back And Forth
One reason your dog could be pacing is that they feel nervous. Another is that they feel excited, or even bored. They like pacing around the room for the same reasons humans do. When they’re going around in circles, they most likely want to play with you. This is how dogs chase each other when they meet – it’s a sign of playfulness.
Pointing Their Snout
Have you ever seen a dog freeze and nudge its snout towards something? They might also lift a front paw in this case. This action is more common among hunting breeds, but pretty much all dogs do it. Dr. Ellen Vindell said, “Dogs are just dogs, and there are certain behaviors that probably any dog that’s a dog can do…. You’ll see a sporting dog who circles like a herding dog, and you’ll get some herding dogs who point.”
Other than expressing how comfortable they are, yawns can mean something else as well. If a dog yawns in public, it could mean that they’re exhausted and are hoping for an afternoon nap. Yes, it can mean anxiety and discomfort, too. Be sure to keep an eye out for this behavior when you notice your dog doing this a lot when in an unfamiliar place.
Tilting Their Heads
People usually talk in a higher pitch when they’re speaking to a dog. Dogs might tilt their head when you do this if, almost as if they’re trying to understand you. Dogs are great at reading as well as responding to vocal cues and body language. They can recognize specific words, so maybe they’re waiting for those associated with walks and treats! One theory says they move their heads that way to adjust their outer ears for better listening.
While humans have 5 million olfactory receptors, dogs have a whopping 220 million. Dogs can smell at least a thousand times better than we humans can. When they’re sniffing around, they’re either sensing some kind of danger or tracking prey. They’ll stay very still and silent while doing this. They can smell the difference between individual dogs or people. They can even tell identical twins apart!
Flipping Up Tongues
When dogs think they did something wrong, they sometimes stick out their tongue and flip it up to apologize. They tend to feel guilty and apologetic. It could also be their way of putting on an innocent face.
Just Like Yoga
Dogs don’t just stretch when they wake up. They do this for the sake of their muscles. It might symbolize love and affection as well. When you get home to see your dog stretching, don’t think they just woke up. This is a way for them to show you they’re happy to see you!
Exposing Their Belly
When a dog shows you his belly, it means they respect you and feel submissive. Maybe they also want to play with you. The only way to respond here is to rub their belly! They’ll want it to happen over and over, so they will keep doing it. However, they might also display this kind of behavior when getting attacked by another animal.
Tucking Their Tail
If your dog is tucking his tail in between his legs, he might be distressed. This is what some animals do when they’re scared, ashamed, guilty, nervous, or uncertain. If your dog does this, comfort him to make sure he feels safe. Treats work well in this case.
Raising Their Paws
When a dog raises its paws, it might mean they’re looking to play or need something from you. Most puppies and young dogs display behavior in this way. When a little puppy wants to eat, it’ll put its paws out for their mother. A puppy doing the same thing to you means they want affection.
Using Their Tails
It’s pretty known that a dog wagging its tail means it’s happy and exciting. However, it can mean submissiveness when they hang their tail down. If you ever see a dog do this, reassure them by showing them affection.
Dragging Their Bum
It could look funny when your dog drags them behind, but you should be concerned. This is called scooting, and dogs usually do this when they have an impacted anal sac that they want to release. Certain dog breeds have a higher chance of suffering from this. It’s a very uncomfortable experience, so make sure to take them to the vet right away.
On Your Feet
Dogs tend to like laying on your feet while you’re eating dinner or watching TV. While it could be somewhat annoying, your dog means well. This is their way of showing their love and loyalty. They only want to be as close to you as possible.
Leaning On You
You should be very flattered if your dog leans on you while hanging out. It’s the equivalent of a hug for them. They aren’t being lazy. They just want to connect with you. All you need to do in this case is to allow them to express affection that way. Just enjoy it!
We know it isn’t the most comfortable thing to be tackled by your dog. They might have injured you by doing this in the past. They don’t want to hurt you, however. This is their way of showing you that they’re happy to see you. They literally cannot contain their excitement.
A dog that flicks its ears means it’s listening. It’s common behavior with animals. It happens mostly when they’re unfamiliar with a sound and are trying to figure it out. Let your dog try and figure things out for a second when you see this happening.
Licking Themselves Clean
It’s no secret that dogs get clean by licking themselves. When your dog is dirty, they’ll attempt to lick themselves clean. However, it can also mean they’re hurt. A dog licking their paws and legs means a trip to the vet, especially if they do this near the joints.
Snarling And Showing Teeth
Dogs can show their moods in many ways, and they’re not always positive. A dog wrinkling their nose means aggression. If they snarl and show their teeth, you need to remove them from whatever is going on. It means they’re ready to attack at a moment’s notice.
When you and your dog go out for a walk, your dog might suddenly stop and raise a front paw. No, this doesn’t mean they got hurt. They’re figuring out whatever it was that caught their eye. Dogs also sniff a lot when they’re playing detective.
When a dog sticks their tail up in the air, it means they’re excited or confident. They often do this when they meet another dog or animal. If the tail is up and is shaky, they could be feeling challenged. A happy and content dog usually has its tail leveled with their body. A low tail or tucked between the legs means insecurity.
The Side Tongue
It’s so cute when dogs hang their tongues out of their mouths, don’t you think? It turns out that this is a signal that they feel happy and calm. It’ll happen when you go out for a walk or play fetch. However, doing it too much might mean that they have the “hanging tongue syndrome,” which can be common among dogs that have flat noses like bulldogs or boxers.
When your dog digs up the yard, they don’t have bad intentions. It’s an instinct to them that they’re born with. This is especially true with terrier breeds. Oftentimes, they dig in the yard to leave bones, toys, or other valuables. It’s also possible that they’re looking for prey or bury their dead.
Why They Bite
Of course, it’s not a pleasant thing to be bitten by your dog. However, in some cases, it can mean playfulness and affection. Dogs bite each other when they’re playing. It isn’t considered aggressive. It’s a behavior that carries over to the way they act towards you. Just be sure to keep an eye out for signs of fear or aggression.
Sleeping Beside You
Don’t get annoyed when your pup wants to ignore the dog bed and sleep beside you. Their ancestors used to hunt in packs and sleep together for security and warmth. Your dog just wants to get close to you. Take it as a compliment that they even trust you enough to do this.
It’s not fun getting slapped by a person, but this doesn’t apply to dogs slapping you with their paws. They aren’t by any means angry, they’re just trying to get your attention. It’s even more different when a dog slaps another dog. To them, it’s a sign of trust.
Eating And Cuddling
If your dog comes to cuddle with you right after eating, they’re showing you how much they love you. A lot of dogs like to take a nap after eating a meal. What better place for them to do this than beside their favorite human?
When your dog is panting, it doesn’t mean they’re in danger. It’s simply a way they like to cool off when they overheat. They can’t sweat as we do, so this is the way they lower their body temperature. A dog panting needs to drink water. Also, a dog might be trying to let go of pain or stress when it does this.
Dogs are like humans in some ways. They can also show emotion with their eyes. When they’re tired or sad, they look down at the ground. When they’re excited, their eyes open wide and dart around them. A raised eyebrow can mean confusion.
There are a few reasons why your dog might bow. We’re talking about when they lower their heads and keep their bodies still. It usually means they want to play. Swinging hips and wagging tails in excitement are also common behaviors. Dog trainers typically call it the “play bow.”
Walking In Circles
Before lying down, your dog usually walks in circles a couple of times, right? This is most likely a behavior it got from its wolf ancestors. Wolves do this before laying down to flatten debris or leaves and make the surface more comfortable. It’s quite funny to see dogs do the same thing indoors.
For the most part, people quiet their pets when they howl, but dogs have a good reason for doing so in the first place. This is similar to yelling, which is how we release angry feelings. They aren’t trying to assert dominance over you, don’t worry. It’s just a good way for them to express their feelings.
Hugging With Eyes
Puppy dog eyes are a very good sign. They’re not trying to act cute to get your attention. They’re just trying to show their affection. It’s like hugging! The innocent look means they adore you and they want a kiss or hug.
No, your dog isn’t trying to yodel. When dogs yowl, they’re trying to communicate with you. An animal journal writer once said, “Our German Shepherd rescue, the sweetest dog we have ever owned (unless you happen to be a cat), is 9. She ‘talks‘ about everything! Grumbles, over being denied a cat lunch, has 5-minute conversations over going out for a walk, exchanges pleasantries (you would swear) over how happy she is to see someone.”
Yeah. Dogs eat poop. It does seem disgusting, but it’s not uncommon. Coprophagia, the act of eating poop, might mean malnutrition. If your dog does this too much, go see a vet. Once the vet rules out malnutrition or a nutrient deficiency, you might have to find a trainer to help break the habit.
You’ve probably seen your dog run in circles, chasing their tail. It’s very common and is a sign of playfulness. However, if your dog does this excessively, it could signify behavioral or health issues. A dog chewing on their tail could also mean anal gland issues or allergies. It might also be a sign of OCD.
It’s not uncommon for dogs to lick, of course. They do so to show their affection. A dog licking you is just like it telling you they love you. Also, dogs also like to taste the minerals and nutrients found in your skin. All the same, it’s good to know that intense licking can be corrected by proper training.
Another common behavior with dogs is humping. This isn’t necessarily a sexual or dominant problem for them. They hump animals, objects, and people in a playful way too. There’s no harm in this behavior, but it’s understandable if it makes you uncomfortable.
“Can you imagine if people greeted each other like that?” you’re probably thinking about butt-sniffing. We know that dogs have a sense of smell that’s 10,000 better than humans. This is how they learn about the world. They can tell the diet, gender, temperament, and gender of other dogs this way.
You know that little squint that dogs sometimes do? We’re sure you’ve seen it in the past. A dog squinting or blinking often usually means they want your attention and some quality time. A dog doing it too much could mean that you’re spending much too much time away from each other.
Open Mouth, Relaxed Tail, High Ears
People usually wonder about the right time to approach a god. The best time to do this is when they have a relaxed tail, pointed ears, and an open mouth. This indicates that the dog feels relaxed, neutral, and safe. It could be a good idea to cuddle up when you’re dog is behaving this way.
Straight Tail, Ears Forward
What does it mean when a dog has their tail straight and their ears are pointing forward? You might be thinking that they’re trying to listen closely to what’s happening. However, it means that something caught their attention. It’s most likely that they’re curious about something and want to investigate.
Have you ever seen a dog in the ‘dead bug’ pose? It probably makes you laugh. They have their limbs in the air and looks exactly like a dead bug. However, it probably also looks very relaxed and content. This is a vulnerable pose, meaning that your dog must feel safe.
When napping, dogs tend to lie on their sides but they usually stay this way for a short period. It takes them a long time to stand up from this position and if they get into a situation where they have to defend themselves then this can be dangerous. If your dog is sleeping on its side then everything is okay!
While the superman pose is just the most adorable thing you have ever seen, this usually means that your pup is unbelievably exhausted. This is most common amongst puppies because then they can stand very abruptly.
If your dog is overly exhausted then they will probably do this pose. They will put their paws out across their chest and stretch out their body. It also may mean that they are overheating and need a cool off. In this case, just give your pup a chance to rest.
This commonly known pose is referred to as the “belly curl,” and is where the dog sleeps on their stomach with their paws underneath their stomach or at their sides. They have their muscles tensed and they can’t access REM sleep. Usually, more shy and calm dogs prefer to sleep like this.
In the case that your pup curls up like a fox then this means that they are very cold. They may even wrap their tail around themself to stay warm. You may want to throw a blanket over your dog if you see them sleeping like this.
Back To Back
Nowadays, dogs have become so domesticated that many forget that they also pack animals. On the other hand, you may be reminded of this when you see how dogs behave when they are around other dogs and show certain behaviors. While it is very cute to see two dogs sleeping back to back, it is also a sign that they trust each other.
You are probably familiar with your dog coming to your feet with a present in his or her mouth. Sometimes a shoe, other times leaves, and even in some cases, a dead animal! Don’t be upset by this because this is a sign of respect. They are trying to make you happy and by doing so, they bring you dead animals. I think it is quite nice. Instead of seeing this negatively, instead, try to turn it into something positive.
Even though some dogs like baths, this is not true for all dogs. All pet owners are aware that most dogs hate baths. You may have a pup that decides to run all around after receiving a bath. The reason they run around is actually to dry off.
By Your Side
To anyone whos ever had a dog at any stage in their life then they know what it is like to have an invasion of privacy. Regardless, you should not be offended if your doggy follows you to the bathroom, it just means they want to be close to you. Remember, pack animals like to stick together!
While you probably thought that your pup understands you then you are no mistake. Dogs are very sympathetic and empathetic animals. They can sense anger or sadness and they will be there to comfort you in these instances. They show signs of affection by licking you or resting their paw on you.
While it is not rare for dogs to eat grass, but it typically needs that they are lacking nutrients. The grass is great because it is rich in fiber and helps digest food well. But, it can also mean that your pup is dehydrated or full of intestinal worms. You may notice your pup eating more grass than usual, and if this is the case then you should rush them to a vet.
Humping Inanimate Objects
You may wonder why it is that your dog is always humping something else. Whether it’s your leg, stuffed animal, or chair, the question remains: Is this normal? The answer is yes, and your dog is doing this just to get your attention. The behavior will persist if they feel like they can get a reaction from you.
Digging After Going To The Bathroom
Maybe you were thinking that your puppy was digging grass up in the yard to mask the business that they took care of in the yard. However, this is not actually true. In reality, this is how they mark their territory and if another dog smells a trace of your dog then they will know that your dog owns that area.
You may have seen your pup giving you a subtle wink, but this not because they are trying to tell you something funny or a secret, but more likely that there is something stuck in their eye.
Barking At Nothing
We are definitely aware of this dog behavior, where your pup stares out the window barking but there’s nothing there. You have probably been confused by this. Maybe they are trying to protect your home since at the end of the day it is their home as well and they don’t want any intruders.
While most pet owners enjoy getting their hands and face licked by their dogs, are you aware of why they do this? Many think that dogs show affection by licking, but others think that they do this as a sensory tool, like how humans use touch to feel something,
Staring At You
Don’t be weirded out by the fact that your dog loves you and is focused on you. You’re probably is most likely staring at you to receive a treat, they surely know that nobody can resist puppy eyes.
While you may think that your dog shaking their toys in their mouth is funny, in reality, this is how they kill prey in the wild. You probably can’t even imagine your innocent puppy doing such a thing, but actually, it is just second nature for them.
Only Eating In Private
When your dog refuses to eat in front of another human or dog means that they have never heard the expression sharing is caring! While we know that the food is nothing we would ever even think to put in our mouths, these dogs don’t know this!
Voluntarily Sleeping In His Crate
When your dog is napping in his crate, this usually means that they consider it their bedroom. You shouldn’t be offended if they want to sleep in their crate, they feel comfortable enough to make their own bedroom in your home! Everyone needs their own space sometimes.
Kick When You Scratch Their Belly
It may be very amusing to you as a pet owner to see your dog kick his legs while getting their belly scratched, and this is actually like being tickled for a pup. The sense of scratching makes them feel like there’s an itch that they need to remove so they kick their legs to do so. If you see your pup kicking their legs too much when you scratch an area then just move a bit.