Learning about calming signals in dogs is not complicated.

Have you ever wondered what you dog was trying to communicate? Read below to unveil the mysteries of dog communication...



Calming signals are a natural way a dog communicates.

These signals are used by dogs as well as most other animals as a conflict solving method and a means of dog communication when faced with unpleasant situations such as:

  • aggression
  • stress
  • fear
  • to prevent these things from happening.
Dogs are great conflict solvers; this is necessary for their survival.

Calming signals are:

  • used to establish trust and security
  • an important way to communicate and be understood
  • to keep order
  • to maintain a healthy social structure
  • are used regularly in a variety of situations.
Pet owners should learn to use pet language themselves in order to communicate clearly with their dogs. Using the signals will help decrease stress among our dogs and will help a relationship with our best friends.

Many of the calming signals can be seen clearly when you are watching and know what you are looking for. Others are very subtle and varied. They can happen quickly, or can be a quick series of signals that can be observed, but if you are not paying close attention they might not be noticed. Recognizing the signals comes with experience.

Many misunderstandings or problems can occur between owners and dogs when a dogs body language is not understood by people. In many cases, a dog labeled as a problem dog is just misunderstood or confused if the signals he is trying to communicate are not understood. If an effort is put forward to understand the dog, the problems can sometimes be reversed. Consult a reputable trainer if you are having behavior issues with your dog.

Through the use and understanding of the signals, our dogs:

  • become more social
  • feel more secure
  • are happier
  • will be able to cope better in various situations
  • will have a much better ability to solve conflicts.
Understanding your dogs signals will help you:
  • to train your dog
  • to understand when your dog is tired, stressed or unable to focus
  • you should be able to calm down a dog who is becoming nervous or stressed just by using these signals yourself
  • you may be able to show an insecure or fearful dog that you can be trusted
  • you can have a better relationship with your dog.

Dogs sometimes lose their understanding of the calming signal language. When dogs body language is not used in a dogs immediate surroundings for an extended length of time, they lose the ability to use and understand them. We unknowingly teach dogs all kinds of new commands which becomes their new language.Some people tend to punish dogs for using their calming signals as they don't understand that he/she is trying to communicate something to you or another dog.

When training, your dog might look away seeming to ignore you; however, he may be trying to calm you and to calm himself because you may be making too many demands on him.

Here are some easily recognized calming signals:

  • looking away
  • looking away
  • blinking eyes
  • licking nose
  • walking slowly
  • freezing
  • sitting down
  • yawning
  • sniffing the ground
  • peeing