For the last few weeks, I have been busy catching up on things around the house and the weather has been bad. The dogs were always so dirty and now that the weather is breaking, Dutchess and Abbie got to come in one night because they were the cleanest. Usually, we take turns letting the dogs in at night where they can sit in my lap, cuddle, watch TV, sleep or have a snack, but most of the time it's all of the above which is what usually happens and Dutchess and Abbie were excited.
It had been a while and they both danced around in circles and jumped from couch to couch. We went down to the family room where the snacks and ball drawer is and of course, they wanted to do something, so after asking and pleading with me, I gave in and we all went to the ball drawer and got their favorite ball. Dutchess jumped up and took it out herself and ran back to the couch and waited for me. She gummed it a hundred times and got it all sloppy and wet and then placed it in my lap for me to pick up. Then I noticed the most amazing thing while they were waiting for me to throw it. I had seen it a thousand times but tonight, it was with more vigor and movement. Dutchess and Abbie were wagging their tail with as much gusto as I have ever seen. They were both talking through their tail and I just know they were telling me that they were happy, I mean really really happy. I know it had been a while, but they were happy dogs now and it showed.
Dutchess’s tail will go in circles like an airplane propeller in big circles, around and around. I swear that on this night, her butt was pulling her backwards because her tail was going so fast. Never have I seen it spin this much and so fast. Abbie’s tail was just going from side to side and would change to up and down. Never in a circle but only north to south or east to west and it also was going with gusto and at high speed. .
This set me to thinking, why do dogs have tails and what do they say with. I Googled a few things about it and learned things I did not know, for example.
Dogs use their tails to communicate strong emotions such as agitation, annoyance and anger as well as happiness. A person can get bitten by a dog that's wagging his tail because they read the signs incorrectly. And make no mistake; there is a science to tail wagging.
Dogs have been wagging their tails since…well, there have been dogs. These furry masses of bones serve multiple purposes. The original purpose of the dog's tail was for balance. It prevents him from toppling over as he makes sharp turns while running or swimming. The tail also balances him when walking along narrow structures, climbing or leaping. Over time, the tail adapted itself to playing a vital role in communication, particularly when a dog is just walking or standing around.
Puppies don't come right out of their mom's womb wagging their tails. The majority of them don't begin wagging until they are about a month and a half old when they have a need to communicate with their litter mates or mothers.
For example, if there's too much "rough-housing" between the pups, one of them might wave their tail like a white flag to signal a truce to its litter-mates As they grow, they wag their tail to beg for food from the adults in their canine family.
Dogs wag their tails for other dogs, humans, but research shows that dogs don't wag their tails when they are alone because there is no need. Just as humans use smiles and body language as social cues in different situations, our dogs friends do the same.
Dogs also wag their tails to spread their natural scent from their anal glands. Each dog has a scent that's unique to him or her. An "alpha" or dominant dog that carries his tail high will release more of his scent than a dog that carries his tail lower. Often, when we see a dog holding his tail between his legs, he's frightened and doesn't want to release his scent. This is his way of flying under the radar.
I know the experts say a lot of things about this, but I know my dogs a little better than some researcher do, here is my take on their tails...
|I'm Pissed, can you tell....|
|I'm a little Gassy|
|My tail would look better if you would get off you tail and brush it|
|I said I'm pissed, LOOK at my eyes...not my butt...|
|You're NOT coming in...|
|Hey, Pull my finger...|
|OK, Let's Play...|
There is no doubt that they gravitate toward me and one thing I know and see every day is when I walk in the room or call their name, their tail will start to move. It's so enduring and even when they are in deep sleep, I can just mention their name...the very tip will move and nothing else and I know they recognize my voice and answer, "I love you too"...
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