Dog’s don’t speak English and they never will. Because of this, we need to learn their language and understand what they are saying to us. Most of our dogs communication come through their body language.
While reading the following information, please keep in mind that canine body language needs to be read in context of the situation.
For example: a dog licking it’s lips after eating is probably not telling you that it’s stressed. A dog licking it’s lips while being approached by a new person, is possibly stressed.
Dog’s don’t necessarily growl before they bite. They use a variety of signals to let us know they are feeling uncomfortable.
This can be a signal that the dog is uncomfortable.
Dog that are stressed can often yawn.
Dogs can ‘freeze’ to try and make the stimulus go away. This can also be used as a time to decide whether to flee or fight.
A turned head is the dog trying to tell you to go away.
This happens when the dog turns it’s head away but keeps it’s eyes on the perceived threat. When this happens, you can see the whites of the dogs eye that presents in the shape of a crescent moon.
Otherwise known as hackles. The ridge of hair from your dogs neck to tail stands on end. Making the dog appear larger. This is often accompanied by stiff body language.
The dog visibly shakes.
The dogs jaw and mouth is ‘tight’ in appearance and closed.
The dogs brow is furrowed from tension.
The dog holds an intense stare. This is accompanied by a stiff body.
Stressed dogs can dribble profusely.
A tense mouth can make the whiskers stand straight out from the face.
If you are in any way worried about your dog, please contact a dog trainer as soon as possible. This list isn’t designed to replace training and education.