How Can You Determine What Your Puppy Is Communicating

canine body language

Understanding canine body language requires looking carefully at canine facial expressions and a balanced body posture. This helps you gain an even deeper understanding of how a dog feels and overall emotional state. To the untrained eye such expressions may appear cute, but when you’re familiar with canine body language, you’ll quickly understand how anxious and uncomfortable the dogs actually appear. You can then use that information to help develop a more secure bond with your best friend.


A person and a dog walking on a sidewalk

One of the first signs that most dogs use to communicate is excitement. Dogs use excited facial expressions as a way to communicate new information, such as that they are about to go on an adventure or that they are about to attack another dog. Dogs use excited facial signals to express feelings of excitement as well. Puppies also use excited signals to communicate when they’re hungry, tired or about to eat or drink.

Another common canine body language signal is whining. When dogs whine it is usually because they are feeling uncomfortable or want some attention. However, there are other reasons why dogs might want to communicate whining. They might be communicating when they are fearful. Or, they might be communicating when they are trying to establish dominance over another dog or person in the pack.’

Looking At A Dog’s Tail

A large brown dog standing on top of a mountain

Looking at a dog’s tail can give you insight into how they are feeling. When a dog is relaxed, their tail is a sign that they are at ease and content. A high-tailed dog will often convey that he is overly excited. On the opposite end, a low-tailed dog will usually communicate that he is tense or nervous.

In order to read dog body language, you must first learn to look at your dog’s head. Our eyes are more used to seeing human body language than dogs, so our brain doesn’t really need a visual cue to know what the dog wants to say. You can tell a lot just from the way a dog’s head is turned to look at you. If you watch two dogs walking side by side, one will turn to face the other will glance to the side.

Watch How Your Puppy Reacts

Another way to read dog body language is to watch how your puppy reacts to a different person or situation. Dogs are very social animals and they will naturally attempt to establish dominant status over other dogs. If another dog shows aggression to your dog, your pup is going to try to establish itself as the leader of the pack. That means he is going to want to greet people with his front paw, while the submissive dog is going to back away.

Bottom Line

If your pup seems to be communicating through his canine body language, you will be able to tell what he is feeling or what he wants. Some common body signs include barking, sniffing, whining, and yawning. All of these behaviors are trying to communicate something. In most cases your dog body language is trying to tell you that something is wrong and that it needs your attention. You will also have an idea of what your dog is thinking when he displays certain actions.

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