Does a Wagging Tail Mean My Dog is Happy?

Does a wagging tail mean your dog is happy?

Dogs often wag their tales when they are anxious and stressed and they use a tale wag with other dogs t show they are submissive. Though most cartoon dogs wag there tail in happiness. Thinking a wagging tale on your dog always means it happy is the most common misconception you can have when reading your dog.

Just as there are many meaning for a human’ smile depending on its speed and how it’s given, there a many meanings for a dogs tail wag depending on its speed and the way it carried. There are over fifty different types of smiles in humans. We smile not only when we are happy but when we are feeling a multitude of other emotions as well. Dog’s tails also communicate many different things.
. Happy dog tail wags differ between breeds. Moreover, just as humans have different personalities and different smiles each dog has his own personality and different wags. So how do you know your dog is giving a happy tail wag?

A good first step is noticing when you dog have a reason to be happy and noticing his wag. How high it is held, the breath of its swing. Catching your dog in a happy moment will help you get what we call a "norm" for your dog. Also note breed and personalities difference first. Consider the general guidelines for reading a tail wag to see if your dog is truly happy, (I have step-by-step instructions for reading a real human smile on my website.

A Sincere happy smile makes you approachable. In human body language it says “I am friendly I am submissive." and "I respect you, and won’t hurt you.
A dog’s happy tail wag says, “I respect you I am submissive and know that you won’t hurt me.”
A happy sincere smile goes all the way up the face to cheeks the eyes and the brows moving like a wave
A dogs happy tail wag, involves not just the tail it typically also involves the rump that lowers and swings the hips with the tails swing.
A broad smile on a human face says I am friendly.
A broad tail wag says the same thing.
A narrow tight smile says, “Don’t bother me.”
Just as dog’s tail held high over the back with very narrow tight short side to side at high-speed tail movements say, “I'm stressed." or "Back off."

I think it is about time I go give Bo the wonder dog a little treat so I can see his truly happy wagging tail.

As the national spokesperson for Pup-Peroni, I am studying the similarities and differences between human body language and dog behavior.

Patti Wood, MA, Certified Speaking Professional
The Body Language Expert
I have a new quiz on my YouTubestation. Check it out!
YouTube- YouTube - bodylanguageexpert's Channel