It is hardly a secret that dogs are renowned as being man’s or woman’s best friends. And the pandemic helped to show just how much humans love these furry friends, too.
Millions of dogs were rescued and adopted during the pandemic. Many of them were for the company as the lockdowns and social restrictions made it more challenging to contact loved ones. Loneliness was a genuine concern during these times.
Fortunately, this was no short-term trend. The ASPCA shows that most dogs adopted during this period remain happily housed with their new parents.
Regardless of how close you get to your dog or puppy, there will always be things that fascinate you about them. There are things that they do that confuse their parents and things that they can’t communicate.
Here are 10, hopefully, interesting facts about dog behavior.
Your dog has secrets and strange behaviors of its own
But they also have ways to show their parents and family how much they care and want to protect. Dogs can appear to be simple, loving animals sometimes, but there is so much more inside them than many realize.
Here are ten facts and thoughts about dog behavior that may help you understand them a little more or wonder less about their sometimes slightly peculiar habits. To discover more in-depth information about dogs, search this site or other resources such as The Factual Doggo, where you will find answers to all your doggy questions.
Why do dogs turn around in circles before lying down?
It is perhaps difficult to state this answer as fact, as it is in some ways more of a theory. However, it is a common belief that this habit is instinctual.
One theory goes that back in time, dogs would move in circles to flatten down grass or bullrushes to make a sleeping area for themselves.
At the same time, they would be looking around for possible dangers and predators and choosing the best defensive position to lie in.
Some believe this behavior dates back to the early days of domestication.
Why are dogs so protective of their human parents?
Some experts believe this is hard-wired into dogs from the days when they first became domesticated.
As dogs became less reliant on hunting and were fed by humans, they came to see their owners as their protectors. In turn, this made humans and dogs part of a pack together.
Dogs, therefore, naturally want to protect their parents, just as you protect your dog.
Do dogs understand human language?
Research has shown that dogs’ brains show neurological activity when hearing new words. This indicates dogs show a willingness to try to understand what you say.
While your dog isn’t going to have a conversation with you, they can relate words to specific activities and items through training. Perhaps the most impressive thing is that they can understand intonation too.
Is it good to teach dogs tricks?
There are some behavior tricks every good dog parent should know, but some owners worry that tricks are cruel.
Teaching a dog some tricks can help keep them active, boost their confidence, and help with bonding.
The tricks, in general, are not a problem unless you are teaching them to attack or bite — a huge no-no. The problem may lie in how you teach them. Show patience, be consistent, don’t be aggressive, and remember to reward your dog for good behavior.
What percentage of the world’s dog population is free-range?
Most dog parents would never consider letting their dogs roam. Most people give a dog a loving home. Of course, everyone knows that there are strays worldwide, but the number of free-range dogs may shock you.
According to the World Atlas, up to 85 percent of the world’s dogs run free. This doesn’t mean that they are all strays, far from it. The term, free-range, covers village dogs, strays, wild dogs, and plain old street dogs who have homes and families who care for them.
Can a dog become a vegetarian?
It is doubtful that a dog would choose to be a vegetarian. Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean that they can’t be. In some cases, they may be better off with a plant-based diet.
Dogs are omnivores and, therefore, can happily eat plant-based food. Many dogs also suffer from food allergies brought on by meat. On top of this, many dog food manufacturers use fillers and poor-quality proteins in their products.
Before you decide that Buster is only eating vegetables from now on, though, consider all the nutrients that your dog needs first. Consult a vet before dramatically switching your dog’s diet, as you may do more harm than good.
Can dogs adopt puppies in the way humans adopt children?
Perhaps not exactly, but dogs crave companionship. Female dogs, in particular, are more welcoming to other animals, not just puppies. This is especially true if the other animal is small and fluffy.
Dogs have been known to accept kittens, ducks, and animals into their pack. Your dog accepted you too, didn’t he?
What makes a dog scratch?
This one isn’t much of a secret, but it is well worth noting. Your dog might be scratching itself out of sheer boredom. Yep.
However, it could also be a sign of something more serious. If your dog is repeatedly scratching, please take notice. It could be an allergy, a parasite, or an infection.
Do dogs recognize human emotions and facial expressions?
Dogs truly are incredible. They know when you feel down, and they will empathize with you. They can understand when you point at something. But perhaps the most impressive capability is that they can recognize facial expressions.
COVID was more than inconvenient for the majority of the world, but those masks stopped dogs from being able to read people’s faces.
It is a fact that a dog can tell much about how a person feels by reading their expressions and emotions. Dogs recognize fear, anger, excitement, sadness, happiness, and possibly more.
Did dogs descend from wolves?
Humans domesticated dogs thousands of years ago. History shows that wolves followed human hunters to gain the scraps of meat they left behind and eventually started to join them.
Wolves then evolved into wild dogs as time went on, and humans had to then domestic them all over again.
The Public Broadcasting Service believes that this happened up to 130,000 years ago. Humans and dogs have a long relationship together.
How much love do you need to give to your dog?
There are no facts or figures here, but your dog needs your love and proper care. After all, they love you unconditionally. They need playtime, exercise, and some tickles and hugs in return.
Yet, you can love your dog too much. Don’t allow bad behavior just because your puppy is adorable. You need to train your dog to know the difference between right and wrong, just as children do. And they also need your love and patience.
Understand dog behavior
Although there are many facts you should know before adopting a dog, you will discover most of them on the job.
Understanding all of your dog’s quirks and behaviors is unlikely to happen, but here are a few little tidbits.
You will find plenty more answers on the internet when you have questions in the future. Meanwhile, enjoy your precious buddy as much as you can.