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Discussion Starter #1
I'm not really sure what to do. I've read up a lot on dog behavior and body language in the past, and then recently I got interested in it again. I was learning a lot about calming signals and all that, you know like lip licking and turning away and sighing and yawning and all that.

And then, when out with my own two dogs, I noticed they were doing all of them. They were doing all of those things they say that dogs do to calm themselves down when I approached them. Any time I get near them the signals start. And they don't stop until I move away. I don't understand?? When I go to pet them, they do it. They both continue to show stress signals while I pet them; even the dog that begs me to keep petting her when I stop, by butting her head into my hand and everything. When I go to put on their leash, they are stressed. I look at them and they get stressed. I call their names and they are stressed. I try to play with them and still the same thing!! I don't understand what is going on. Something I am doing is stressing them out, but I have no idea what it is??

I'm pretty sure whatever it is, it isn't the dogs. Both of them are doing the same thing. But I cannot figure out what I am doing wrong that causes them stress every time I give them attention. They seem to want to have me around, though. When in a group of people they mostly only pay attention to me. They want to sleep where I sleep, even if it isn't comfortable. And they only care and start getting sad/lethargic when I am gone. So I'm pretty sure they don't hate me or anything?? Idk! I really don't know what to think. I'm scared to do anything, to touch them, to talk to them, anything. I don't want them to be constantly stressed out.
 

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A lot of calming signals are normal dog body language indicating appeasement, excitement, frustration, etc.
Eg. Paw in the air, I'm just a little hungry puppy.
Vigorous shake during play, wow! That was over the top, just shake that off.
Lip licking at the door--OMG I can't stand the anticipation-let me out, let me out, SQUIRRELS, SMELLS, FRISBEE, I can't stand the anticipation!
Stress is a normal part of life, so are dog calming signals.

You could post a video and see what people think
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Okay so I did film them. I'm not sure if it's actually going to let me upload it (doesnt seem like it wants to). But I took the video after their mile bike ride and after being fed and hanging outside for a bit. They don't seem to make as many (if any) of the signals when they are excited about food or going outside. They just act excited and jumpy then. They don't really show any excitement over playing with me at all, though, like they would rather not. Well... Poker does get a bit aggressive with the rope sometimes, but most of the times he won't play with me at all.

In the video they are showing less of the sugnals than usual. Just a lot of lip licking this time. But hopefully it illustrates the point.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Yeah the video wont post. But basically it seems to me that they are reacting to me specifically. When I first come up to them there is excitement, but that quickly goes away and the sighing and yawning and head turning and lip licking starts. I just dont know what I am doing that stresses them out.
 

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They seem to want to have me around, though. When in a group of people they mostly only pay attention to me. They want to sleep where I sleep, even if it isn't comfortable. And they only care and start getting sad/lethargic when I am gone.
You've answered your own question. Don't be one of those people who searches for things to get upset about. Clearly the dogs like you.

When people go to foreign countries they buy these small booklets so they can say something in that foreign language. But words/context/usage is only gained by time and experience, so the locals don't get too upset when the tourist who is actually courteously asking for a menu at a restaurant instead tells them that their mother is a sweet potato.
 
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