Decoding Your Pet’s Body Language
It’s not always easy to know what our dogs are telling us. For those of us who have been around animals all our lives, we have a pretty good idea by their wagging tails, growls, licks, shaking, etc. but do we really??? We often don’t realize that “they” understand “us” better than we realize. Researchers in Budapest used magnets resonance imaging to monitor dogs while they listened to human speech. They discovered that the animals processed both the meaning of words and the tone in which the words were spoken, using similar areas of the brain as humans do. Even if we have never owned a dog, but have been around them, it is probably enough to say that we have a good understanding of their language.
I recently found an article in Time Magazine about decoding a dog’s body language and it asked four questions. I answered the four multiple choice questions and got one wrong! Can you guess which one? I’ll let you take the test first and then I’ll reveal which question had me a little stumped!
Jake and Maggie waiting for their SmartyPaws Vitamins!
My new postcards came in the mail today!
Soooo excited! Got my custom postcards in the mail today from Dox Design! Love them! I took the pictures at an angle so you could see the raised gold paws and polka dots on the front and scroll on the back!
1. Your pooch is licking her lips:
A. She’s hungry.
B. She’s stressed out.
C. She just ate some peanut butter.
Answer: B. Dogs can experience anxiety and this is a sign of stress. Avoid any sudden moves or approaching the dog from behind.
2. You can see the whites of your pup’s eyes:
A. He’s surprised.
B. He’s curious.
C. He’s afraid.
Answer: C. The whites of the eyes appear when the head turns one way and the eyes go the other. But out in public, the whites showing may be a sign that he’s looking away out of fear or that he wants interaction to be done.
3. Your dog freezes up:
A. She needs space.
B. She’s getting ready to pounce.
C. She’s feeling nervous.
Answer: A. Dogs will freeze when they want a person or another dog to back off right away.
4. Your dog’s tail is wagging like crazy:
A. He’s happy.
B. He’s upset.
C. It depends.
Answer: C. The wagging tail does not always mean happiness. It is important to look at the rest of the dogs body to see if he is tense. This is the case in both dogs and cats, a neutral, relaxed tail shows they’re content.
Did you get them all right? Ok…I got number 3 wrong! I honestly wanted to say “all of the above”! I thought this was a fun post to put out. One reason being that I have had animals all my life and got one question wrong! I also have noticed that when I take Jake and Maggie with me, I have had people ask for approval to pet them and I have had woman literally get on the ground and engulf them with their bodies. I have learned to give a polite word of advice…never underestimate what a dog will do. I know my dogs are friendly but they may also be having an off day, be stressed out about their environment and may not like a stranger laying over top of them.
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