Learn a little dog language

dog, golden retriever, white

What is the difference between experienced and new dog owners? They can connect with their dogs on a deeper level. They have learned the dog language. Of course it is mainly body language, but it is important to know if you want a healthy, long lasting relationship with your dog.

So how can your dog talk to you without saying a word? If you are not Dr. Doolittle, the barking is just noise, but how he moves when he barks is the clue.

Wagging his tail

If your dog happily wag his tail and tongue, he is in a playful mood. Maybe he even lowers the front of his body to the ground and lifts his little backside into the air. He is probably full of energy and ready for playtime.

The ears stand up

Something has caught his attention. He may stop wagging his tail and even tilt his head to the side to pay closer attention to what catches his eye. This is not necessarily an alarm call, but that he has found something new.

Showing his teeth

This is considered a sign of aggression. He may do this with strangers or when he is confronted with an animal that he feels threatened by or that could threaten you.

Lying with his tail down on the ground when he greets you

This is a way of greeting that also shows loyalty. When you enter the house, your canine companion can lie down on the floor. This pose is also called “active submission”. He does not feel threatened or fearful. It is an act of friendship in which he realizes that you are the boss and a friend.

Now your dog makes other noises besides barking. Barking in itself can have many meanings, so we will talk about other sounds that your dog might make and that you somehow want to perceive.


Your dog should not growl at you, but he may growl at strangers. It could also be a reaction to him sensing that you are uncomfortable with someone. If your dog growls at you when you take something from him, it could be a game of alpha position.


That is such a cute gesture. Unfortunately, it can also be annoying if you try to get him to do something he doesn’t want to do, such as go to the vet. In these times, ignoring the whining lets him know that it won’t take him off his duty. Whining can also accompany their expressions of loyalty and greetings.

Do any of these gestures and sounds sound familiar to you? If so, you can communicate better with your dog now. You can ‘speak’ his language.

1 thought on “Learn a little dog language”

  1. Pingback: Housebreaking Lhasa Apso » The Dog Training Blog

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