Ears back when I pet her. What does it mean?

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Ears back when I pet her. What does it mean?

This is a discussion on Ears back when I pet her. What does it mean? within the Dog Training and Behavior forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; Hi people, Another quick question regarding my dog Bessie. When I pet her, especially if I'm giving her all of my attention, she has her ...

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Old 05-19-2011, 07:07 PM
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Ears back when I pet her. What does it mean?

Hi people,

Another quick question regarding my dog Bessie.

When I pet her, especially if I'm giving her all of my attention, she has her ears back. She doesn't wince or move away from me, she is enjoying the attention but her ears are back. She also licks her lips often, if you know what I mean. Is she afraid of me? I'd hate to think that.

What could this mean?

Thanks.
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Old 05-19-2011, 09:59 PM
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Lip licking and ears back in that context equals stress . So yes you dog either is fearful of just doesnt like what you are doing . You can pair petting with treats if its important to you to be able to handle her that way. Many dogs have touch/ handling issues
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Old 05-19-2011, 10:21 PM
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Does she do this all the time? Is it only in a certain room or from a certain angle? As crio said those two things are a sign of being uncomfortable and counter conditioning is a great tool
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Old 05-19-2011, 10:53 PM
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Are you petting her on top of her head? What does she do if you stroke her chest or side?
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:26 AM
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Hmm that's so odd because she actually comes to me and sort of puts her head under my hand/arm to stroke, she's always pushing her way in to be near me in most circumstances and follows me around so it's odd to think that she would go to such efforts to be petted if she is bothered by it.... could she be trying to tell me somthing?
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:27 AM
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She doesn't always lick her her lips but she does often have her ears back... so strange.
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:30 AM
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She has a sore ear at the moment so I haven't been touching her head. If I stroke her anywhere really, whether my petting is excitable or long and slow she always has her ears back. She doesn't always lick her lips though. For instance, I stroke her now... her ears are back, not tightly back but back and she IS licking her lips now but then when I stopped stroking her she looks up at me and starts licking my hand and nudging it back on her head.
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:31 AM
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I'll make a video and link it if thats ok
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Old 05-20-2011, 08:07 AM
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DSCF4040.mp4 video by Brunettebarbie1986 - Photobucket

Here is the link to a video of my petting Bessie. It's 1 minute 26 seconds long. You'll see her ears are down and she's licking but when I stop petting her she pushed her head under my hand and then at the end she lies down on her back for me to rub her tummy.... strange!! I'd really appreciate your thoughts.
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Old 05-20-2011, 09:08 AM
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She looks to me like overall she WANTS the contact, and you are very gentle and not scary with her. She also looks like she has some mixed emotions going on. The way she is avoiding eye contact and turning her head away and doing a bit of licking are all ways of saying "I'm no threat to you... please don't be a threat to me..." But to be honest, I think you are doing great with her. She seems to be a bit shy as her natural nature, but clearly she enjoys being next to you and relating to you and the contact that is affirming of her connection with you.
I'm very interested to hear others' opinions of the video.
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