All posts tagged: dog

Pets Corner: Can you speak dog?

More than ever before dogs and owners are being forced to live in very close proximity. Some dogs, just like humans, are a little more precious about personal space and problems can arise when both owners and other dogs fail to recognise signs of anxiety, frustration or irritation in another dog. This month I want to focus on some aspects of dog communication and how taking the time to learn a little more about this can help us all get along a bit better. Dogs are uniquely equipped to read the human face and they are exquisitely attuned to our body language and spent much of their time watching us, perhaps owners should return the compliment and take time to learn a bit more about what our dogs might be trying to tell us. Below are three common scenarios where canine signalling is frequently misinterpreted by humans.  You, or someone else, try to cuddle your dog. As you move in for contact your dog slightly turns his face away from you and yawns. What you …

Pets Corner: Working your dog’s nose

Last month we looked at the importance of play for pets. This time I want to focus on the dog and in particular his amazing sense of smell. It might be said that a dog ‘sees’ through its nose. Humans are primarily a sound and vision species, we rationalise our environment using eyes and ears. For instance, we recognise people by how they look and sound. Not so dogs, they recognise each other primarily via a signature scent and use smell to make sense of the world around them. Dogs have 300 million olfactory receptors to our 6 million. They have a specialist smell analysis organ in the roof of the mouth and use tail wags to broadcast personal scent information from their anal glands. This is why dogs that go blind or deaf can actually adjust quite well, because their premier sense is still intact. Our forefathers used dogs to hunt, track and forage – anything from truffles to an escaped convict was located in this way. Today we still employ the dog’s powerful …