I love my bones!

I love my bones!

In 2010 a group of researchers in Budapest did an excellent study on how dogs respond to specific recorded growls. The researchers recorded a series of play growls, threatening growls and the growls dogs emit when they are guarding food.

They placed a meaty bone in the middle of the room and then allowed one dog at a time into the room with the meaty bone and had a recorder set to play the three different types of growls.

Can you believe the play or threatening growls didn’t deter most of the dogs from partaking in the meaty bone? However 11 of the 12 dogs backed away from the bone immediately upon hearing the food guarding growl. Only 7 of the 12 returned to the bone within 90 seconds.

This study suggest food guarding is the most universally understood communication among dogs.

Dogs are constantly communicating. Dr. Karen Becker gives us some examples of dog communication:

Did you know:

  • If your dog’s ears are up, his tail is stiff and he’s staring at another dog, he’s conveying dominance-or at least he’s hoping to?
  • A dog looks away from another dog and lowers his body to the ground is showing submission?
  • If your dog is fearful around other dogs–and exhibits unpredictable behavior as a result of his fear–you can help him cope by stepping into a leadership role when he shows anxious or erratic behavior around other dogs?
  • Smell is another form of communication among dogs? All kinds of information is transmitted–most of it a mystery to humans–as they purposefully sniff each other.
  • If a dog isn’t properly socialized with other dogs during the critical time period of 3-6 weeks of age, they may not learn appropriate canine communication or pack behavior?

My own dog Chrissie who I got when she was around 2 years old suffers from not knowing appropriate canine communication. When trying to play with another dog she growls and barks and makes sounds as if she wants to fight. This puts the other dog on the defensive and they could come back in a fighting mode.

Hopefully this information will help you better understand your canine friend.

P.S. In the picture there is a rawhide bone. We do not recommend rawhide bones.