10 Things Your Dog’s Tail Is Trying to Tell You


What’s that little guy or girl trying to tell us when they’re wagging that tail? Are they happy? Anxious? Confused? Upset?

Let’s turn to dog behaviorists and break down 10 things a dog’s tail can tell us.

1. The full body wag

This usually accompanies a full-circle wag and this means they are VERY HAPPY. “The more swaying and wiggly motion closer to the head of the dog, the friendlier the dog is.” Makes sense

2. Fast and shaky

A fast, vigorous, and almost-shaky wag on a tail might mean aggression or hostility. Be careful, because the dog might jump into action at any moment. “This is a highly aroused dog and should generally be avoided until it settles down.”

3. The slow wag


A slow wag might mean a dog is unfriendly, so be careful. “Make sure to take the entire environment and personality of the dog into consideration. If it was an unknown dog, do not interact,”

4. High and stiff

This generally means a pooch is alert and aroused. It might also mean they are confident and enthusiastic. If other dogs are near, this might mean the pup is asserting his dominance. If the dog is wagging its tail like this AND is showing teeth or wrinkling their nose, you should leave it alone.

5. Wagging on the right side

Research shows that a dog wagging its tail on the right side is more friendly than the left side.

For example, you might notice your dog wagging on the right side when it approaches you or someone else it knows.

6. The pulled down wag

If a dog is wagging very low, almost between their hind legs, it’s a sign that the dog is not very comfortable with their situation and might be feeling anxious.

7. Tucked-in wag


You’ve seen this one before. The dog looks almost sheepish when doing it. “This can mean a dog is feeling threatened or is fearful of the situation he’s in. A tail tucked between the legs covers a dog’s genital area for protection.”

8. Curled toward its head

The dog might be relaxed because some tails have a natural tendency to curl toward the head. But if it looks like the tail is being pulled toward the head, it might mean a dog is overstimulated or highly excited.

9. The limp tail

If your best friend has a limp tail, it could signal an injury. The tail is an important appendage to any dog, and if it cannot be wagged, there is a problem. Tails can be broken and sprained, so you should immediately seek medical care if your dog looks like it has a hurt tail.

10. Stubby tails?

Breeds with stubby or curly tails still communicate with you by their tails just like any other dog. Pay attention to the base of the tail, which is attached to the spine and is where all the action starts. You’ll be able to see if it is pulled down or perked up.

Hope this helped! Enjoy your best friends!