Our dogs use all kinds of subtle and obvious movements and gestures to communicate with us and other dogs.
They use their bodies, sounds and chemical secretions,( but that’s for another day), to express their feelings, emotions and intentions.
That’s why it’s so important that we learn to understand as many of our dogs' signals as we can. Understanding what our dogs are trying to express lets us support them and pre-empt situations before they occur.
Lili Chin has a wonderful book Doggie Language - A dog lovers guide to understanding your best friend, which shows us simple exactly what our dogs are telling us at different times.
When you think of dog body language I bet the first thing that pops into your head is, a wagging dogs’ tail?
So many people say to me, ‘but their tail is waggy, so they are happy, right?'. In fact that’s not always the case. Remember earlier I mentioned ‘subtle’ movements? Well yes, a dog's tail wagging can mean they are happy, but it can also mean they are feeling frustrated, scared, distressed or excited.
Here are some of the articles and infographics I have found really helpful in understanding the subtle messages our dogs are giving us.