How Do Dogs Express Themselves?

How Do Dogs Express Themselves?
Francisco María García

Written and verified by the lawyer Francisco María García.

Last update: 21 December, 2022

Although some people are reluctant to believe that dogs do express themselves. They have their own sort of language, and they understand humans as well.

If your pet properly is trained properly, he will be able to express himself and obey orders. Therefore, there are some behavioral signs and guidelines that based on this belief. They will help you figure out what your dog is telling you.

Signs that dogs use to express themselves

dog wagging tail
  • When a dog sleeps next to you, that is his way to show his love, affection and companionship. However, it’s not good for dogs to get used to sleeping with humans. It’s better for them to sleep on their own.
  • Loyalty is your pet’s best quality. He loves you and he will be completely loyal to you for as long as he lives.
  • The tail is the dog’s most well-known signal. Humans have always read it as an indicator of feeling happy, sad, or scared.  However, it also might indicate different feelings such as discomfort, nervousness, anxiety, etc.
  • Licking is also a form of expression. When a dog licks his owner, it’s not only a sign of love. This gesture means other things such as submission, obedience, companionship, etc. Keep in mind that licking takes place at a very young age between mother and pup.
  • Dogs are wolves’ descendants, so belonging to a pack is very important to them. They always protect and take care of their pack. As their owners, humans form part of the pack. When there aren’t any dogs around, their human family becomes the pack. Therefore, they will use the pack for several things such as seeking protection, companionship, and safety.

Additional information on how canines express themselves

  • Everyone knows that dogs tend to lick their owners’ wounds. However, dogs can also tell when their owner is sick. They will try to help as much as they can, which is being with us at all times. They will try to alleviate and calm their owner’s pain.
  • Jumping is usually a sign of love and happiness. Dogs express themselves by jumping, among other things, in order to be at the same height as you. Then they will lick and put their paws on your hands if we don’t crouch down.
  • It’s also normal for a dog to lean on their owner. It’s usually meant to grab your attention to get you play, be affectionate or simply remind you that they’re hungry and it’s time to eat.

Facial expressions

You are wrong if you believe your dog doesn’t smile. There are many studies that agree with pets being capable of showing many different expressions. You can figure out several stimuli through these facial expressions, both positive and negative. If your pet looks at you and then he is surely smiling at you, which is a gesture of affections.

When you make gestures and the dog is looking at us, it’s a clear sign that he is aware of every move you make and that he is totally dedicated to you.

Minor home “theft” and barking

dogs express themselves with barking

If your dog has “stolen” a sock or a shoe, you shouldn’t interpret it as something bad. You must understand he does it because he misses you. The object carries your sent and he needs to help him feel good.

Something similar occurs with barking. You shouldn’t get annoyed if your dog barks at noise or strange sounds coming from front door. You must understand your animal is taking care of you. He is looking out for what he considers to be his home and family. That is how he protects something important to him.

The contents of My Animals are written for informational purposes. They can't replace the diagnosis, advice, or treatment from a professional. In the case of any doubt, it's best to consult a trusted specialist.