Dogs are man’s best friend. However, despite the strong connection that these cuddly creatures have with humans, they are still like any other animals—they cannot talk. Dogs certainly cannot pour out their thoughts and emotions through words but they have different ways of communicating with us, and that is through their different antics and behaviors. You might get confused when your dog behaves strangely but if you study him closely, you’ll be able to know the reason for all his actions. If you want to understand your dog better, it is very important that you pay close attention to his different behaviors. Here are some common dog behaviors and their meanings:
Barking is one of the most common ways for dogs to communicate with us and with other dogs. When a dog barks, it could mean a lot of things. He could either be sensing a threat or he came across a strange object. Barking could also mean that someone is arriving and your dog thinks it’s his job to announce it. Sometimes, barking could also mean that he is bored, confused, or scared. Since there are many reasons why a dog barks, it is your duty as his owner to know the meaning behind his barks so that you can instantly give him what he needs.
Digging is very natural among dogs and they do this either because they are bored or they want to have a cool spot to lie down. For dogs, digging is one of the skills that are innate to them and even puppies know how to dig. Another reason why dogs dig is to hide their food and toys and they definitely are very adept when it comes to hiding them. Do not scold them when they are digging in your lawn because that behavior is really hardwired into them, however, if their diggings are becoming too alarming do not hesitate to reprimand them—in a gentle manner, of course.
When dogs pant, we usually think that they are thirsty but the truth is, they do this to cool off body temperature. Dogs, unlike humans, do not perspire when their body temperature rises. They sweat off through their paw pads and by panting. However, if your dog is heavily panting, it could be possibly mean that he is having a hard time with the temperature. Aside from cooling down their body temperature, panting could also mean that they are coping up with some health problem or they have just encountered a traumatic experience. Panting is also a dog’s way of recovering from pain.
A dog’s howl usually makes us feel creepy because we have always associated it with the supernatural. Howling, in reality, is one of the many forms of vocal communication that dogs use. When dogs howl, it is because they want to attract attention, communicate with other dogs, or announce their presence. Sometimes, dogs also howl because they want to mimic the sound of sirens or musical instruments.
Paying attention to your dog’s behaviors will certainly help you understand your pet better. Knowing the meaning of your dog’s actions can also help you train him faster and stop him from misbehaving. Our duty as their adoptive parent is not only limited to feeding them and playing with them, we always have to listen to what they want to say to us. And we can only do this by observing their behavior.