The language of love

As our dear dogs speak it.

You will recall that last Friday I featured an item under the title of Private First Class Lingo. The item had been brought to my attention by Constance Frankland.

Well here’s another really special story that Constance came across on a website called Arditor and I wanted to share it with you.


love8 Ways Your Dog is Saying I Love You

Although dogs don’t speak our language, they are constantly trying to tell us that they love us and always showing love through their actions. Unfortunately, many shrug their shoulders or get annoyed over their dogs’ love gestures.
Here are 8 ways your dog is saying “I love you”…

waggingTail Wagging

Similar to a cat, a dog’s tail is a communication tool. In fact it is sometimes more accurate in translating its emotions than barking. Held at different positions, a dog’s wag could communicate excitement, fear, threat or submission. If your dog’s tail is held in a relaxed position and wagging all together with its entire butt, it means it is very happy to see you.

lickingFace Licking

Warm, sticky, wet and stinky! We know this can get annoying but licking a person’s face is a love gesture from a dog. Dogs lick faces for a few reasons. Mainly, if your pet dog is licking your face, he is trying to groom you! Grooming is an intimate gesture only done after a strong connection is made between dogs (so now you know he sees you as one of his kind). On the other hand, if a stranger dog licks your face, it is simply trying to say that he is harmless and friendly.

following3Following You Wherever You Go

This is another behaviour that can get on your nerves, especially when your dog attempts to follow you to work! However, it is only a dog’s way to show his love, devotion and loyalty to you. Wherever you are, that is where your dog wants to be. Dogs are extreme social creatures and unlike humans, there is no need for solitude.

Sheltie sleeping with her ownerSleeping with You

Similar to wild wolve packs, wild dogs curl up together to sleep in the night. Rather than sleeping alone in his designated corner, your dog prefers to snuggle right next to you in your bed. If you catch your dog sneaking onto your bed or falling asleep next to you in your couch, it implies that you are his family.


It is no surprise when you see something like a smile on your dog. Dogs do smile too! Research has found that dogs can also show and use facial expressions similar to how humans do. A dog’s smile is another way of showing his love and joy to his owner. Having said that, most of us are guilty of not recognizing our dog’s smile.

crotchCrotch Sniffing

Argh, this is an embarrassing one and how we wished our dogs can quit going around sniffing crotches. But before you start screaming at your dog, try to understand it. This behaviour is in fact a dog’s perculiar way of greeting. More importantly, apart from a hello, it allows the dog to understand and remember you through your scent.

sickTaking Care of You When You are Sick

Does your dog stay by your bed and watch you the whole time while you are nursing a flu? This is its natural instinct to care for a sick or wounded family member, just as they would in the wild. A dog extends its love and care to its sick or injured owner by quietly and patiently watching over him/her. But make sure you hide any superficial wounds away from your dog! It might actually lick your wound as its form of first aid.

leaning2Leaning on You

Whether you are sitting or standing, your dog is leaning on you and wouldn’t budge. You can’t move and you can’t get on with your daily routine. While you are wondering what they are up to, your dog has already got what they needed: your attention. Getting your attention and giving you their attention by leaning on you is their way of showing affection. Next time this happens, stop what you are doing and reciprocate with some love.


This turned out to be more of a Sunday Picture Parade but it seemed too special to hold it from you until the weekend.

No, our dogs don’t speak a language that we humans would recognise as such but, nonetheless, our dogs communicate in ways that still are as magical and special as our human poetry.

Speaking of poetry, let me close today’s post with this.


18 thoughts on “The language of love

  1. Mine do all of the above. When I had foot surgery a couple of years ago, Charlie laid his head on the pillow that was propping my foot up. I even have pictures of it. I love almost all of the shows of affection, but not the licking. I have seen where they put their mouths, yuck.

    But I love them anyway. Thank you for pointing all of these out, some people just don’t speak dog.

    1. Susan, wonderful confirmation from you. Thank you. Let me add the following.

      Last Sunday I received a call from England from a dear friend of mine for over 40 years. He is no relation but, nevertheless, he is like a brother to me. The call was to report that he had just been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.

      On hearing the news I burst into tears. Immediately both Cleo and Pharaoh came up to me, I was standing, and muzzled my legs. Of course, that only made me weep more!

  2. My Border Collie would never let me read the The Guardian. After a minute or two, a silent paw would appear at the top of the opened pages and slowly draw the newssheet down into a crumple. I don’t think she was a right-wing Collie, though may have been.

  3. Thinking again of my chow/wolf, who really needed no one, even me — but loved me. During a time I was in deep grief, he’d approach me slowly, with Bambi eyes, his forehead scrunched, his ears and tail wilted… I’d throw my arms around him, bury my face in his fur and wail, and he’d softly coo, “Ohhh! Ohhh! Ohhh!” all the time I was crying. When I was finished and let him go, he’d shake, resume his usual aloof posture, and lie full-weight across my feet, his back toward me: “I’ve got you.”

  4. So sweet. Whenever my kids get hurt or are sad, and they’re crying, my dog goes up to them and curls right up against them. It’s like a comforting hug. Her attention gets my kids to pause in their sobs and take a moment to stroke her fur. Of course, they go back to crying again, but that connection never fails.

  5. This is such a heartwarming post Paul. I can relate to all of these ways our pups show us love. Their ability to tune in to when we feel hurt is so special and comforting. They have been there for me in the darkest times 💕

    1. Dark times long ago, I trust, Val. I don’t want to think of anyone having to go through dark times even with a dog to love them. The thought of some others dealing with terrible times and not having a dog in their lives is more than I can imagine.

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