Dogs are social animals like us, but they primarily communicate by reading and displaying body language. Luckily, dogs are willing to pick up some of our verbal language (when we train them well). We can do them the favor of learning more about how they communicate too. When we understand our dog’s body language, we can feel confident we are understanding when they are having positive experiences, intervene when they are not and better help them negotiate living in our world.
Most aggressive behavior is the dog’s attempt to increase distance from something that makes them feel uncomfortable.
A dog may also increase distance from something they are worried about by getting low or withdrawing, humans should stop and give the dog space. Punishing a dog showing this body language can trigger aggressive behaviors.
Mild resource guarding against dogs, and often unfamiliar people, is normal behavior. They are behaving like you would if a stranger asked for your wallet.
Good dog play will have lots of breaks or pauses and will be bouncy. If your dog has trouble taking breaks, help them. Avoid letting them get so worked up they have trouble disengaging or get into scuffles.
There's so much more to learn to understand your pup. Check out more great articles here!
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