Calming Signals

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Calming Signals

This is a discussion on Calming Signals within the Training and Behavior Stickies forums, part of the Dog Training and Behavior category; I know that quite a few of us have read "On talking Terms with dogs: Calming Signals" by Turid Rugaas and that it is a ...

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Old 02-02-2011, 08:31 PM
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Calming Signals

I know that quite a few of us have read "On talking Terms with dogs: Calming Signals" by Turid Rugaas and that it is a commonly recommended book here. However, I bet that there are probably plenty of members who have not yet read this book or know what we mean when we talk about calming signals.
Because of this, I thought that these videos would be good to share!

I think that this one is pretty informative!

And I thought that the next 2 videos were both just kinda neat.
This one points out the calming signals dogs used while interacting with one another.

This one has some pop ups that tell you the calming signal and what the dog is thinking.

A few nice illustrations. Not of real dogs, but useful nonetheless. And great for kids!

If anyone finds a good video or article on calming signals, feel free to share it here. Also, it would be interesting to hear how people use calming signals with their dogs!

********ETA: Turid Rugaas' Website:*********

Last edited by crock; 08-06-2014 at 09:47 PM.
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Old 02-03-2011, 05:43 PM
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Here's a page that has photos of the signals.

Calming signals gallery

A video on eHow showing a dog refusing treats and how to use calming signals to see if it might be a good idea to quit training.

Determine If Your Dog Is Too Nervous to Train |

Calming signals in action between a nervous dog and a confident dog that ones to meet the nervous dog.

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Old 02-15-2011, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by mydaisy View Post
this is my first experience with calming signals and i think it is amazing, i had no idea that these where communications. What is the name of the book and author i would like to see if they have it at the library.
Here is the book On Talking Terms With Dogs: Calming Signals (9781929242368): Turid Rugaas: Books On Talking Terms With Dogs: Calming Signals (9781929242368): Turid Rugaas: Books

I think, you would really like it while you work with your pitty. It will help you read some of her body language.
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Old 05-17-2012, 09:49 AM
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Apologies if this has been posted before, but I found this interesting article related to calming signals and thought I'd share.

Mind the Muzzle: Using Facial Expression as a Correlate of Stress Level in Domestic Canines

Originally Posted by Abstract
The domestic dog is a ubiquitous species having frequent encounters with humans; in the U.S. over 4 million of these result in a dog bite. These injuries might be reduced by improving human-canine communication. Canine responses to alterations of human facial expressions were recorded. The dogs’ responses to the presence of a human experimenter were subsequently analyzed against survey data collected by the shelter on the individual animals (time in shelter, age, sex, reason surrendered). Staring at a dog induced more arousal than other human facial expressions (i.e., Averting Eyes, Grinning, or Yawning). Dogs in the shelter the longest looked towards a human the least compared to dogs there 3-6 weeks. Strays and dogs surrendered because the owners did not want them Tongue Flicked, a behavior associated with stress, more than dogs surrendered by owners that could not keep them. Dogs with high tail heights demonstrated Mouth Open, a behavior associated with relaxation, the most, while low tail height dogs displayed this characteristic the least and medium tail height dogs fell in-between. Identifying these and other variables associated with signs of stress in dogs could allow for reduction of aggressive encounters.
I find that the tongue-flicking behavior being more common in strays and do not wants interesting. Of course, this could have something to do with lesser familiarity/interactions with humans as a whole.
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Old 02-03-2013, 11:58 PM
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Calming signals during training
Jessie is a space sensitive dog. Even after much time working with our second dog Lucy, who is very respectful of her space, we still see some minor calming signals. Check them out in this video:
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Old 03-02-2013, 09:28 PM
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What your dog is desperately trying to tell you! - YouTube
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Old 06-19-2013, 08:45 AM
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This is also a good article: Does Your Dog REALLY Want to be Petted? | eileenanddogs

There was a dog at Home Depot that clearly just wanted to small & check people out, mom the the thing many folks are taught & put her hand out for the dog to sniff ... Which forced her to bend over the dog in what could perceived as a threatening manner to the dog.

She didn't understand when I tried to explain to her why that wasn't the best rung to do.
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Old 10-07-2013, 08:49 PM
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the learning theory (How to correctly rehabilitate an aggressive dog. I...)

there is a good explanation of a fear grimace in this video (thanks zoesmom!) as well as some other really fantastic advice!

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Old 03-24-2014, 11:51 PM
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Old 03-30-2014, 09:38 PM
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Some other resources for reading dog language:

Observation Skills for Training Dogs on Facebook

Dog I-box dog-ibox
has two courses on observation skills for reading dogs.

Fenzi Dog Sports Academy
Fenzi Dog Sports Academy - Home
has several courses with this in the content.
"BAT Behavior Adjustment Training"
"Dog as a Second Language"
reading and responding to stress in performance dogs.
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