29 Facts About Dog Psychology Every Dog Owner Should Know, As Shared On This Viral TikTok Account
The champion sprinter of the dog world, the Greyhound is a gentle, noble, and sweet-tempered companion with an independent spirit. However, many greyhounds who have been bred for racing have spent their lives in confinement, being subjected to cruel practices that resulted in injuries and even death. Luckily for this pup, it was able to get out.
"Millie was adopted from dog racing in 2018 and has come a very far way since the day we met," her owner Taylor Huerta told Bored Panda. Now, Millie spends her days in a loving home where Taylor takes care of her every need.
In order to bring awareness to this amazing breed, Taylor also created Instagram and TikTok accounts for her precious pet. "Millie's ... content is intended to educate, entertain, and engage her followers," Huerta said. "From psychology facts to tips on decreasing anxiety in dogs, Millie's content is useful to any and all dog lovers of the world."
This time, however, let's focus on the former. The information that Taylor shares has allowed us to understand dog behavior on a much deeper level, and we think you'd appreciate it too.
Meet Millie, a greyhound who was rescued from dog racing in 2018
Image credits: milliethenoodlehorse
Her owner Taylor Huerta has a bachelor's degree in psychology and a doctoral degree in occupational therapy
@milliethenoodlehorse 🥺 #dog #dogs #dogsofttiktok #fyp #foryou #foryoupage #foryourpage ♬ original sound - Millie The Noodle Horse
And shares very interesting dog psychology facts on her pup's social media accounts
Whenever your dog leans on you and puts their whole body weight on you.
That's actually their way of hugging you and telling you that they love you.
Huerta has a bachelor's degree in psychology and a doctoral degree in occupational therapy, so you can be sure these posts were well fact-checked. "Psychology is a major aspect of my career and has always been a fascination of mine," she said.
"I knew little about dog psychology before adopting Millie, but felt as though I quickly became her guide/therapist. From separation anxiety to social anxiety, I got a first-hand glimpse into the psychology of a dog. It became my passion to educate myself on [the subject], and through many hours of research, I gained a better understanding of Millie," Huerta explained, adding that she hopes her content can enrich the bond between other dog owners and their four-legged companions too.
Dogs will actually sneeze when they are play fighting to show that they are just playing around and they don't actually want to hurt you.
Millie's owner believes that in order to give a pup the best possible life, we must try to understand them more than just physiologically. The good thing is that when you spend time with them and really invest yourself in it, you start noticing things you were oblivious to before. "You learn to recognize what triggers specific behaviors and how can you develop effective and safe strategies to overcome them. This is especially useful if you have a recently adopted or rescued dog," Huerta said.
And she definitely knows what she's talking about. "Millie is a 5-year-old retired racing greyhound. Unlike her father, Millie was too scared to race and was placed for adoption at less than 2-years-old. I had to teach Millie so many things once adopted; like going upstairs (we lived on the third floor), going potty on a leash, and to trust people. It is an honor to be able to share Millie's story and help other dog owners better understand their fur baby," the woman said.
Zoomies are short bursts of energy your dog just can't seem to control. Researchers have found only happy healthy dogs get the zoomies. So if your dog is doing the zoomies, then you are doing everything right.
You may feel guilty when you catch your dog quietly, staring at you before you leave the house. But fear not, their calmness is a sign that they trust you and know that you're coming back.
Whenever your dog looks deeply into your eyes, right before they poop, it means they feel vulnerable and they trust you to keep an eye out for them.
Smelling Your Crotch
If your dog is smelling your crotch, this is your dog's way of checking your health and mood. Dogs use a sense of smell to read details and their surroundings. So your dog is just checking to see if you're okay.
Yawn is not quite the same as a human yawn. Dogs yawn in order to reduce stress and reduce anxiety, which helps them calm down and remain comfortable.
Dogs Have Best Friends
Researchers have found that dogs have a best friend. Dogs love humans and other animals too, but any dog owner can attest that they have one true best friend. They're loyal to one and that's the dog owner.
Excited When You Come Home
Does your dog do a little dance or get the case of the zoomies when you come home? Researchers find that a happy, noisy, tail wagging greeting is one of the surest signs that you and your dog are connected.
Tilting Their Head
When your dog tilts their head while looking at you, this is because they're trying to read your body language and they are analyzing your tone of voice.
If your dog is sleeping on their side with their legs extended, it means your dog feels safe, is relaxed and at a comfortable temperature.
Sleeping With You
Researchers find that if your dog chooses to sleep next to you, it means they trust you like no one else. Scientists have found that sleeping with your dog helps you sleep better throughout the night and decreases overall stress.
A happy dog will roll on their back and expose their belly to you. This is a sign that they are happy and trusting of you. In fact, a dog initiates physical contact, such as bumping up against you, putting their head in your hand or pulling at you is expressing their happiness and their desire to be with you.
When a dog is happy, their eyes will be a normal, soft shape. Their gaze will be relaxed and gentle and they will blink often.
Sleeping On Your Clothes
If your dog sleeps on your clothes, it means they love you. Your clothes have your scent on them and they just want to get closer to you.
If your dog kicks backwards, after going to the bathroom, it's not to cover it up. It's done to mark their territory, using the scent glands in their feet.
Licking When You're Hurt
If you get a cut and your dog tries licking it, this is because your dog has antibacterial compounds in their saliva. So when they try to lick your cut, this is because they're trying to help you heal faster.
Roll In The Grass
Dogs roll in the grass for the same reason children do it. It's soft, smells good and is a fun way to release energy.
Lots Of Sleep
A healthy, happy adult dogs usually sleep for up to 16 hours a day. If your dog is not sleeping that much, this could be a sign of stress.
Sense Of Time
Researchers have proven that dogs know the difference between an hour and five hours. If conditioned to, they can predict future events, such as regular walk signs and feeding schedules.
Dogs Can Fall In Love
When a dog is looking at their best friend and their owner, their brain releases a hormone called oxytocin, better known as a love hormone.
Affection Without Food
Once your dog has finished a meal, have a look to see what they do. Studies have shown that dogs that go straight to you after eating are displaying obvious signs that they love you. They aren't motivated by food or treats and are simply showing affection because they enjoy being close to you.
If your dog sleeps in the cuddler position, it means that they trust you and see you as one of the other dogs.
Researchers have found all dogs dream, but puppies and senior dogs dream more frequently than adult dogs.
Carrying Food, Treats, Toys
If your dog has a habit of carrying the food from one location to another, don't worry. This is common behavior. Dogs do this as a way to protect their valued resources from being stolen.
Dogs Think Humans Can Do No Wrong
So if you accidentally step on your dog's paw in the middle of the night, chances are they'll think it's on purpose.
The Donut Or Fuzzy Bagel Is The Most Common Sleeping Position For Dogs
This position is done to preserve body heat and protect vital body parts. This is also a favorite position for dogs when they get cold.
The Burrower Sleeping Position
When dogs sleep in the burrower position, they are searching for comfort and security. Burrowers are affectionate, but very needy. They often need lots of attention and affection in order to fall asleep.