The Greeting Stretch

When a dog wakes up from a sleep, or simply gets up after lying down for a while and stretches before coming to greet you and say hello, the common misconception is that they are simply stretching their muscles after a long period of rest. Although there are accasions when this might be the case, it is now believed that this behaviour actually forms part of a dogs greeting behaviour, and has even been given a name, the ‘Greeting Stretch‘.

Canine submissive behaviour

Avoiding direct eye contact
In the dog world, looking into another canine’s eyes can be perceived as a threat. So when you see a dog turning their head away from another dog, it likely means they are trying to avoid eye contact to show deference to the other dog and avoid confrontation.

Urinating when greeting
When a dog tucks their tail, avoids eye contact and urinates at your feet when you walk through the door, their showing signs of submissive urination. They may even roll onto their back and urinate. It’s their way of showing you that they are not a threat and that they surrender to your authority. Puppies often outgrow this behaviour, but if your adult dog is still urinating at your feet (or your puppy does it frequently), take them to the vet to rule out any medical conditions. Once you have a good health report from your vet try taking them outside immediately upon coming home while giving them minimal attention until they have been to toilet.

Why do dogs walk around in a circle before lying down?

Circling is innate behaviour

The most probable reason why many dogs circle before they lie down is that their ancestors did so in the wild. You just can’t beat a good nights sleep and simply by circling  around in an area of grass would create a more level, softer surface for lying on. If the area was covered in snow or leaves, circling would similarly soften and level the spot.

The behavioural effects of castrating male dogs (Neutering)

Having your dog neutered is not a decision that you should take lightly, after all there is no going back once the deed is done! Before proceeding you should consider the effects that castration may have on your dog’s behaviour.

The castration of male dogs will stop the production of the hormone testosterone. This might be beneficial when treating unwanted behaviours that are more likely in males than in females. Urine marking, roaming away from home to track down bitches in heat, inappropriate sexual behaviour, and inter-male competitive behaviour. In contrast, and contrary to popular belief, castration does not “calm a dog down”, since excitable and unruly behaviours are seldom influenced by testosterone.