“I looked him in the eyes and smiled at him so he knew it was okay.” Someone told me as Banjo enthusiastically dug in to his supper.
My snarky response was. “So, you challenged him and bared your teeth?”
I was being snarky. The person I was speaking to knew it and laughed. It is true that you shouldn’t stare your dog directly in the eye if they are showing signs of stress, or if it is a strange dog you are unfamiliar with.
I would advise against making eye contact with Banjo whilst he eats. I think his time on the streets has left him very concerned that he will not get to finish his meal. 1If your dog is like Banjo and thinks his meal will vanish my post Slowing Down a Dog that Eats to Fast is worth a quick read.
Smiling is different though. The current and general consensus in the science community 2
is that domesticated dogs can and do read human facial expressions and understand the meaning behind them to a at least a small extent
Not only can dogs read your emotions, they can also read strangers emotions. Rather this is a comprehension of our emotion, or merely a memory of how we act when happy or angry is still unknown. I think it is good to know that when I smile at Mugsy or Banjo for doing a new trick or, something cute, they don’t think I am barring my teeth at them.
I love Mugsy’s expressions. It’s pretty cool that he might really like some of mine.
How Does Your Canine React to Your Expressions?
References [ + ]
|1.||↑||If your dog is like Banjo and thinks his meal will vanish my post Slowing Down a Dog that Eats to Fast is worth a quick read.|