Learn how to speak cat, dog, rabbit and horse by studying animal body language!



Signs of relaxation include taking treats gently, ears forward, eyes relaxed, jaw loose, wiggly body, and widely wagging tail close to level with the body.

Subtle behaviors indicating conflict, anxiety, and fear include yawning when not sleepy, lip licking and tongue flicking, the “wet dog shake” when not wet, lifting/holding up a paw (unless watching a squirrel), turning head to the side and averting eyes, moving the ears back, trying to retreat or hide, moving slowly, tensing or freezing, dilated pupils (eyes look wide and dark), showing whites of eyes, rolling on back and showing belly, excessive licking of herself, a person, or dog, taking treats harder or suddenly not eating at all, and hypervigilance of surroundings. 


Dogs communicate using all parts of their bodies. Check out this website to learn to speak dog!

What about the "guilty dog" look? Check out this video link to learn all about what it really means!



We humans behave in a very "primate" way and what we often intend with our own body language is much different than what our pets perceive.

A direct stare, eye contact, a reach towards the body and especially the face, and bending over or reaching towards our pets can all be threatening and scary. Even a well intended hug or kiss is often very scary to our pets. 

This is how some dogs think we act! Can you tell how scared this dog looks by reading his body language?

His eyes are wide, tail is tucked, ears are back, jaw is closed and stiff, and he is flattened to the ground. This is not a dog who wants to be petted. So how might you help this dog feel more comfortable? Read on to learn more!

 Dr. Sophia Yin, Cattle Dog Publishing. 

Dr. Sophia Yin, Cattle Dog Publishing. 

So how should you greet a dog you might ask? To avoid causing fear in our pets, it is best to turn our bodies to the side, avert our eyes from theirs, avoid reaching towards or leaning over them, avoid putting our faces near theirs, and call them over to us so that they can make the choice to interact with us. 

Check out the graphic below to learn more!



Learn more about feline body language and communication by clicking the links!