I’m Australian. I was born in Australia and speak English. During high school (a long, long time ago) I was taught German, so I can speak a little of that, and I was married to an Italian; so again I can speak a little of that too. But I’m certainly not fluent in either of those nor any other language of the world! The only language I can speak fluently is English. This means that I would struggle if I moved overseas to a non-English speaking country!
However, there is another language I am extremely fluent in … dog!
Dogs communicate using a complex range of body language signals, which once understood correctly, makes them extremely easy to understand!
As a dog owner, it is essential that you learn to read your dog’s individual signals and act upon these when necessary. Think about how comfortable and relaxed you feel if you are surrounded by people who understand you completely…
Did you know that most negative incidents can be avoided if the lines of communication are opened and owners understand how to correctly interpret their dogs? If only I had a dollar for every time I consulted with a client whose dog had been involved in a negative incident only to hear the client say “But they were wagging their tail …”
If you can read when your dog is uncomfortable or worried you can;
- Interrupt and move your dog away from a situation, which in turn can not only prevent a negative outcome but also build amazing trust, as your dog learns that you take care of the situation, rather than your dog having to.
- On the flip side if you know when your dog is happy and what your dog enjoys and finds rewarding you can do these things more often, as well as using them as rewards in training!
So how can you learn to ‘speak dog’?
The following are some great links that will help you open up the lines of communication between you and your dog:
*The below links are not graphics, however the last link does show a low-level negative incident at a dog park. Please review the content prior to allowing children to view.
If you would like more information on how to correctly interpret your dog please contact us!