Talking Dogs

This video will make for great discussion. I haven't put voice over on it yet, so what do you think?

To set the scene: 

Kelpie (brown dog on lead) is my entire 3 year old (in a few days) Kelpie.

Other collies are also entire and belong to the pub/hotel I was visiting. Don't know very much about them.

To help the non-trainers in this video we are looking at body language and what these dogs are doing.




The first weird thing is that I know exactly where this is filmed as I've stayed there with my dogs several times.  Small world!

I think canine body language videos should be left without a voice over as you concentrate more on what's going on rather than listening too.  

The resident collies are not always this mannerly so I wonder if your entire male was the reason for the wonderful display of cautious, mannerly if a little tense behaviour shown.  I love the Kelpie head turn each time the collie gets a little closer and makes eye contact and also the shake off when you move him away at one point.  

Really great clip, plus your ability keep a steady hand while filming and holding a dog on leash should be credited :)


Both dogs seem to be well behaved, Sue did mention that the other dogs are not usually this well behaved. It will be nice to watch another video as it does seem that the other parties dogs may have been trained too.

Kelpie looks very healthy by the way

could you include the URL to the video in the discussion ? my browser at home doesn't seem to be able to access the video. I can see from the source code that it's on youtube. can't get that at home because where I live I only can get a dial-up connection. have to go to public library or a campus library if I need high speed access.

this sounds like an interesting video.

no idea what you mean by "Talking" though. if it's that dogs will growl in play, that's something really important for people to understand and be able to distinguish from serious growls (warnings, hostility, etc). also some dogs vocalize a lot with a sort of half-yodel-half-growl that I try to describe as "grr-rooo". Always with happy body language. often done when greeting a person dog is fond of or anticipating walk or dinner. my bitch Velvet does it if I talk to her in a sweet happy voice, especially singing to her.

But any time a person calls on a behavior consult and says "he's not growling, he's just talking", the adviser has to be very worried that the dog probably IS giving a warning and the person is in denial about that. Nearly impossible to know without seeing the body language and whole incident from start to finish.

Wow! What a great display of dogs communicating. Your dog was throwing calming signals left right and center, text book perfect. The stiffness in movement was obvious, lots of tongue flicking, especially loved the way your dog would look away every time the BC looked at him. And then, to end it, a classic full body shake by your dog as he comes off stress. Loved it! 

This is exactly how my entire male behaves when he meets another entire male. Thank you so much for sharing. The more understanding humans have of their dogs the more enjoyable life becomes for both.

Really really interesting video. I liked to see how the dogs started giving more and more calming signals as the encounter progressed. I did wonder why the BC went to hide behind a bush at one stage near the beginning though? What do you think.

I wonder if the 'other dogs' that the BC hasn't got on with in the past have had less good 'dog language' skills? The BC does look very, very tense to start with.

I think it's always good to have videos like this available as a reference point as loads of pet dog owners miss loads of the calming signals even when you point them out to them. Loved the video Chirag

It would have been good to see the dogs before they saw each other so you could see what the very first communication was.  I'm a newly certified training so feedback on my comments/observations are welcomed.  This is my shorten version:  Arousal level remains fairly high in both dogs throughout the video till near the end.  They work out a dance of curved approuch, turning sideways at times and look away  and move aways that even though is good dog lanuage the overall arousal level in both dogs signal things could quickly change.  It's nice to see the final way they decided  to end it and both dogs move on to being interested in other things in their environment.   But it's likely they still had more to work out.  Great job letting your dog continue to approach the other dog and then praising him for making the choice to move away from other dog after short, nice greeting.