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01 Apr Dog Language – Why is my dog doing that?

You may find yourself from time to time looking down at your fluffy housemate and thinking “Why are you doing that?” or “What are you trying to tell me?”. Some can be almost self-explanatory. For example, if a pup hears a new sound or smells something new, they might not be sure what to do next (although more often than not, it will lead to investigating). However, others will leave you puzzled and questioning their actions. 

Here are a few interesting and fun facts that you may not have known about your pooch:


It’s not new news that when you arrive home from a long day, (or even just putting the bins out), that your furry companion will be excited to see you and jump all over the place. However, did you know that what they’re trying to do is jump high enough to get to eye level so that they can give you a great big kiss on the lips. This is because in a doggy brain, it’s seen to be showing a higher level of affection. Dog’s can show affection by lying or leaning on you, but licking you is their no.1 way of saying “I love you!”.

I know, crazy right?! It doesn’t stop there. When you’re giving your dog belly rubs or pats on the head, you may have noticed that once you’ve stopped, your pooch will raise their paw and place it on you. This is not because they want you to continue, (well not just that), but they are attempting to reciprocate the love that you just gave them. 

Woman sitting with golden retriever


Most of you will have seen videos on social media of dogs attempting to sing when their owners are playing an instrument. In fact that’s exactly what they’re trying to do. Dogs are able to vocalise their barks and howls into an almost harmonic manner. The same thing can occur when you’re playing with them or have just arrived home. Of course it won’t be the same quality as the Adele’s and Lady Gaga’s of the world but they give it their best shot. 

Brown dog with open mouth in field


This may seem like an obvious one but it can easily be mistaken when playing with you, or other dogs at the park. When a dog’s hair raises either on the back of their head, neck or body, it can mean that your little buddy isn’t quite sure about a situation; think of it as goosebumps. Goosebumps can become apparent in both positive and negative environments. So if this does occur, give your buddy a bit of time and space to come to a decision. 

Irish doodle asleep on the floor

Head and ears

No dog breed is exactly the same, so it can be easier/ harder to tell their current emotion by the positioning of their head, or pointiness of their ears. But there’s one thing that is common across the majority of dogs and that’s head tilts. You’ve probably seen that when you speak to your dog, their head can tilt from one side to the other. This is because they’re trying to hear you better. Be warned, they may emphasize this just to get an extra treat or two. 

Black dog standing on two legs


Dogs that tend to be more submissive will lick their lips and yawn as a tool to help calm themselves down after a big walk or a tear around the living room. It can also happen when playing with their human as an indicator that they’re tired or they’ve just had enough. But don’t be fooled by your tricky pooch, as they could be doing this so you drop your guard and they can jump at you like a kangaroo on a springboard. 

So there you go folks, we hope this has enlightened you and furthered your doggy knowledge with useful (and fun) facts on all the random and lovely things your companion does. 

If that hasn’t quite fulfilled your thirst for dog knowledge, why not try our activity monitor? It takes the guesswork out of exercising and replaces it with fitness and happiness.

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