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Dogs Read Us

Our dogs read sign language.  Have you ever thought about that?  Just like we humans do, even if we're not classically trained in actual sign language, dogs pick up on our bodily cues.  We read body language, hand and arm motions, facial expressions etc. all the time, all day.  Dogs too look to us for important signals.  A glance from you toward their leash hook immediately tells them it's time for a walk.  Moving toward the back door signals to them they're headed out to the yard.  Sure, you might purposefully tag a word for your dog to associate with when you head to the door (such as "outside"), which then simply teaches a new signal, the word, but the motion alone is being read even without the word attachment.  It's actually far easier to train and teach a dog with cues than language. 

Possible Cues Your Dog Already Picks Up On
Your eye movement toward the door, leashes food etc
Using finger to point in a direction to go
Crying vs laughing or smiling
Energetic vs tired body language
Head nods for direction
Pain body language
Stress body language
Breathing (For some odd reason Murray is VERY in tune to breathing.  Deep sudden breaths stress him.)

They're favorite cue is my "walk" cue :)


  1. WE watch THEM fur signs and Signals Constantly...
    They need to start watching US fur when we are wanting Snacks and stuffs. RIGHT?

  2. Yup, we notice lots of things the hoomans don't think we notice BOL!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  3. Us dogs can read sign language and we can sense lots of stuff too

  4. Oh yeah! Excellent post! We are always on the watch for what mama is doing next! Always one step ahead off her! Xo Chloe and LadyBug

  5. Great post and too right we see so much more than humans think we do. Have a wonderful Wednesday.
    Best wishes Molly

  6. No doubt, you are right. I've noticed that when I'm stressed out, even a little bit, Shyla behaves differently around me. I suspect that someone wasn't nice to her before I knew her - and so my stress scares her. I'm working on teaching her that I'm nice even when I'm stressed out!


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