Category Archives: Dog body language

Does a Wagging Tail Mean a Happy Dog?

Why do dogs wag their tails? The prevailing view is that they do so when they feel happy and friendly. Many do, but dogs also wag their tails in other situations. So the answer to the title question is no. … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Dog body language, Human and dog misunderstandings | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Scared Dog vs. Happy and Engaged Dog

  Here’s a little dog body language study. My dear Zani shows a lot of emotion, which means she is a good dog to observe. She is pretty easy to read and can teach us a lot. The short video … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Dog body language, Fear, Stress Signals | Tagged , | 6 Comments

Dogs and Body Pressure: A Photo Study

Can you guess what just happened here? Zani and Clara and I were playing a game I call the Gravity Game. It has evolved over the years. The indoor version is as follows: Clara deliberately drops her ball It rolls … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Dog body language | Tagged , , | 12 Comments

My Dog Is Afraid of the Clicker. What Should I Do?

I wrote this article especially for people who are either new to using a clicker or have not dealt extensively with a fearful dog. If your dog is scared by the noise of the clicker, slow down. Switch to a … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Clicker, Fear, Sound sensitivity, Stress Signals | 6 Comments

Finding the Joy in Agility

What do you see in this professional photo of Summer on an agility A-frame in a competition? She’s so pretty in that photo, and running nicely, but you know what? She wasn’t happy. Here are a couple more photos from … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Agility, Competitive dog sports, Dog body language, Positive Reinforcement, Training philosophy | 17 Comments

Ist dieser Hund außer Kontrolle vor Freude oder aus Stress – falsche Frage

Click here for the English version of this post.  Immer wieder machen Videos von Agility Hunden die Runde im Internet, die die “Zoomies” kriegen, also ohne ihren Hundeführer vom Kurs abkommen und über den ganzen Parkour ihre Runden drehen und … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Safety, Stress Signals, Training philosophy | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Is That Zooming Agility Dog Stressed or Happy? Wrong Question!

  Auf Deutsch. (German version of this post.) There’s a video going around (there always is, right?) of an agility dog getting the “zoomies” and taking off on her own, running and jumping all over the ring without her handler. … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Safety, Stress Signals, Training philosophy | Tagged , , | 17 Comments

Clara’s Progress at the Vet’s Office

Here is a little bright spot a few weeks after the sudden loss of my beloved dog Summer. In February 2013, I posted a set of photos of Clara that I took at the vet’s office. (They were actually video … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Desensitization and Counterconditioning, Dog body language, Socialization | Tagged | 8 Comments

Am I a Wimp for Caring About My Dog’s Emotions?

Maybe it’s my upbringing, but I always flinch a little bit at the use of the language of emotions when talking about training. So even though my relationships with my dogs are primary and important, I hesitate to talk about … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Aggression, Dog body language, Fear, Resource guarding, Stress Signals, Training philosophy | Tagged , | 12 Comments

Preventing Dog Reactivity with a Barrier

My back door opens onto an elevated wooden porch. There are ten steps down to the yard. The top of the steps provides a view into the neighbor’s yard, which can be a very interesting place. Clara runs there when … Continue reading

Share Button
Posted in Arousal, Dog body language, Dog training hints, Management, Reactivity | Tagged , , , | 17 Comments