I bet you think when your dogs tail is wagging, they are happy, right? Keep reading to find out if that’s actually the truth. And lets talk about some other types of tail wags and their meanings.
It’s true that your dogs tail is their number one communication tool. It can be short, curly, long, or straight. Doesn’t matter. It all has a meaning. You may think that a wagging tail means happy dog, but you have to look at their whole body and the situation. This will help you determine if a wagging tail is in fact a happy dog.
The rest of this blog is a quick guide you can use to see what your dog is telling you when they wag.
First, why does a dog wag it tail anyway?
Your dog learns to wag its tail weeks after being born. It’s used to talk to dogs and humans. Even though a wagging tale can show they are indeed happy, it also could be excitement or nervousness. What does your dogs tail position mean?
We will have to also consider the speed of a wagging tail too. Let’s learn some more.
Neutral position, or no wagging
Your dog is relaxed. That’s a good boy. Their tales for most dogs will be down near their heels.
Upright, tail is wagging
Usually you would think this means happy dog, but this also means your dog is excited. And excitement could be unpredictable. Again, what situation you are in can say a lot. Are there strangers around? Have they seen a rabbit?
Gentle, backwards wagging tale
This wag shows curiosity, unsure of something in their environment. It’s so funny seeing this when you know what it means. Just wait.
Tail tucked between legs
This one isn’t hard to tell but it usually means they are scared. A little nervous. Best to give them some space or just reassure them all is okay. Again, the environment says a lot too.
Now this is a happy dog! Their entire body will be wiggling all over the place too. Play with your best friend, they are waiting:)
If their tell is straight up, it can mean the are mad. Be careful here. Step back and give some space here. Something is up.
Did you learn a lot? I did. Now you know that a wagging tale doesn’t always mean a happy dog and you should take into account the environment and the body movement to really know how your dog is feeling.