Communicating With Your Dog...Are You Reading The Signs?

Our dogs read our gestures, like pointing and facial expressions, better than any other animal on earth.

But are we reading our dogs’ gestures as good as they are reading ours? 

Dogs learn to understand human gestures from a young age, looking when we point to an object on the ground or sitting when we motion to do so.

It's important that we take the time to understand what our dog is trying to communicate to us to make sure they are properly taken care of.

Understanding our dog's gestures can also overall strengthen the bond between dog and owner.

Studies have shown that there are many different gestures our dogs use to try and communicate with us.

Listed below are just a few of those gestures and how to interpret them:

1. Head Turn = Your dog looks at an object, looks at you, looks back at the object. He’s saying, “Fill my food bowl!” or “I want to go outside,” depending on what he’s looking at.

2. Licking = Your dog wants pets or scratches. Don’t leave him hanging!

3. Flicking a toy = Your dog holds a toy in his mouth and throws it forward toward you, he wants something to eat or drink.

4. Rolling over =Your dog wants scratches, and is using body language to direct petting towards his belly.

5. Plunging Head-First under an object or human = Get my toy or bone!

6. Roll over = “scratch me; rub my tummy” Rolling onto one side of the body and exposing the chest, stomach and groin.

7. Jump = “give me food/drink OR open the door” Jump up and down off the ground, human or an object, usually while staying in one location.

8. Lick = “pet me” Licking an object or human once or repetitively.

9. Chomp = “play with me” Involves opening the mouth and placing it over the arm of a human whilst repeatedly and gently biting down on the arm.

10. Paw = “I want” used to convey a desire, most commonly a toy, but also food or water, petting, or a door opened. Lifting of a single front paw to briefly touch an object or human.

11. Head turn = “get me that” Head is turned from side to side usually between a human and an object of interest.

12. Hind Leg Stand = “I’m hungry or I want your attention”Lift front paws off the ground and stand on hind legs, front paws are not resting on anything.


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