Communication can be a challenge. Trying to decode what your partner, boss, co-worker, or friend is trying to say, either verbally or with body language, can be harder than solving today’s WORDLE. No, we’re not talking about a new dating app or Slack messages with your boss, we’re talking about communicating with your dog. 

In this article we are sharing some common communication behaviors to learn from our four-legged friends, so you can feel better equipped to find out just what is your dog trying to say?

How We Communicate 

While dogs might be able to pick up on our behavioral cues, it’s not always easy to understand what our pooch’s actions are trying to tell us.

Dogs communicate with their physical presence, so getting to know your dog’s personal behaviors in specific situations will go a long way to improving your communication.

Where we may be able to articulate that we feel sad or anxious when our partner is out of the house for long periods of time, your new puppy isn’t able to do the same but they can chew your baseboards while you’re at work. 

If they don’t do it any other time than when you’re away, it’s as if to say I am feeling some type of way about the situation.  The behavior is your first clue that something’s up. 

Use this guide below to determine what your pup is trying to tell you with his body language or actions. 

Then you can connect the actions and behaviors to specific times and situations to further understand what they’re trying to say. 

How Dogs Communicate   

Barking

According to Canine Journal, “Generally, one bark is an alert. Multiple barks mean he is trying to tell you something – anything from hunger to needing attention.” When your dog barks, that's your cue to look at the situation - is there someone at the door? Are they at the door, looking to go out for a pee? 



Chewing

Just like human babies, puppies use the motion of chewing to relieve the uncomfortable feeling of incoming teeth. In adult dogs, this behavior helps keep them entertained and alleviate anxiety. Offer them a chew toy (you may have to try a few before finding the right one) to guide them towards a healthy release (and to save your shoes!). 

Squinting Eyes

Although it might feel like your pup is giving you the judgemental look of a disappointed parent, this squinted glance is quite the opposite. When a dog wants to communicate a calming signal or appear non-threatening, you will often see this behavior.

Eating Grass

Seeing your precious pooch chowing down on grass can be alarming to new dog parents, but research shows many dogs will do this when their tummy is upset or lacking fiber from their diet. Rest assured it is completely normal!

Head Tilt

If you’ve ever politely nodded your head while listening, then you are not so different from your furry friend. Dogs will do this cute gesture as a way to show they are engaged and listening—especially if there’s a treat in hand. However, if you notice this behavior is constant and not linked to communication, it might be worth checking out with your vet.

Excitement When You Come Home 

We’re not talking about a little tail-wagging here. Some dogs will be wildin’ out with endless licks, jumping couch-to-couch and playful barks upon their owner’s return home. Just like humans, dogs also possess oxytocin which is released when they are reunited with their owner. Of course, this excitement can also be linked to the accompanying activities of your return: walks, cuddles, and treats.

Holding Her Leash or Harness in Her Mouth

If it’s KOSTON Montreal Leash or Essential Harness, they’re trying to tell you they’re fashionable, hip, and care about their safety. They can also be trying to tell you it’s time for a walk, some fresh air, or it’s time to get outside and toss the ball. 

No matter what your pup is trying to communicate to you, understanding your dog comes with time, love, and patience. 

Just as our pups provide constant affection and companionship, we too must pay attention to their behavior to take better care of our four-legged friends.

Do have a funny dog communication story? 

DM us or tag us #KOSTONPets

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