Some examples of calming signals dogs use to communicate peaceful intentions:
Yawning- how many times has your dog yawned at the vet or when you’ve yelled at him ? Dogs yawn to calm themselves or you or another dog and to communicate no harm.
Sniffing the ground- how many times has your dog started busily sniffing the ground when you’ve called him in a harsh or worried voice? It may have made you more angry but it was meant to calm you down.
Sneezing – have you ever watched two dogs playing somewhat roughly and then one dog starts to sneeze as he plays? That sneeze is not the same as an itchy nose, it’s a signal that tells the other dog that this is play and helps keep it from escalating into something more serious.
Head turning- when your dog greets a strange dog or person have you ever seen him turn his head or eyes to the side or even turn completely sideways. This head turning isn’t snobbish behavior it says “I mean you no harm”.
Pawing – have you ever met a young puppy that was insistent on greeting you by raising it’s paw? All this while you thought you were teaching it to shake, when in reality the pup was teaching you how to be friendly and inviting you to play.
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