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Woof Wednesday: How To Talk To Dogs

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"Say, what? I don't get it..." Image copr. Lewis Gardner

Once you understand the language of dogs and what your puppy “says” with his barks, wagging tail talk and other body language, you’ll know how to talk to a dog with effective puppy communication. Remember that your puppy is not a mind reader and what’s “normal” behavior for people may be a totally foreign language and offensive to dogs. Instead, you can use “dog talk” to get your message across. Here’s an article with some detailed “do’s and don’ts” about how to talk to your dog.

Are there certain words, phrases or silent signals (hand gesture commands?) that you’ve taught your dog? Did you teach them, or did the dog simply pick them up? Magic understands “car ride” and “Frisbee” and learned on his own, but I taught him hand signals for sit, down and wait. Here’s the first in what I hope will be a series of Ask Amy videos on how to talk to your dog. What else would you like to see?

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered? Do you have a new kitten and need answers? Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, listen to the weekly radio show, check out weekly FREE PUPPY CARE newsletter, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter with pet book give-aways!

About amyshojai

Amy Shojai, CABC is a certified animal behavior consultant (dogs/cats), award winning author of 30+ pet care titles and thrillers, and spokesperson to the pet industry.

8 responses »

  1. Way too cute! My dog is deaf, but she’s pretty savvy with sign language. 🙂 I use those hand signals you mentioned, which work great until she decides not to look. LOL

  2. You have provided an incredible resource.

  3. Pingback: Writing Paw Prints: Which Pooch Are You? « August McLaughlin's Blog

  4. Interesting material! I recently saw a program on PBS (Dogs Decoded, on Nova) that showed how dogs are hard-wired to understand hand signals. Not even chimpanzees can do it. So, we should work with our dogs natural abilities.

  5. Oh yes out dog knows all the signals. The word out excites him. I’ve taught him hand signals for sit, lay down and circle. The first night after we removed a rug in our living room Alex walked around and around, paused, and walked and paused. He was telling us he needed something soft to lay down on. I love “talking” to our animals. My husband and I call ourselves, Dr. and Mrs. Dolittle.

    • Magic likes the “out” and “outside” word, too. My first dog would spin and circle to say “yes” but Magic just barks.

      Love the way Alex told you about something soft for his bed, LOL!


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