Although we humans are emotional creatures, we are trained from a young age to keep our feelings in check, a dog’s emotions are never concealed. A person may want to burst into tears after accidentally breaking a dozen eggs on the floor, or scream at the top of his or her lungs when the children decide to finger paint on the walls. However, we keep our emotional outbursts to a minimum, because that is what we are taught to do. Our dogs on the other hand, just let it rip. Their emotions unfold right in front of us, regardless of what they are feeling.
If you are like most dog owners, you know when your pooch is nervous, angry, happy, upset, or even depressed. This is because if dogs had a sleeve, that is where they would wear their hearts. Perhaps this is what we love best about our furry friends…no guile: no guesswork, no wondering, no having to beg them to tell us how they “really” feel. It’s obvious.
Because they are innocent creatures, as are all animals, dogs simply make their feelings known, whenever, wherever. For example, when you come home from work, you certainly know that your pooch is glad to see you. This is demonstrated in multiple ways, from a wagging, thumping tail, to literal leaps in the air. There is no way to confuse that emotion with anything but happy.
Similarly, you can probably always tell when something is bothering your dog. Your pal may sit with his or her chin on the floor, dolefully watching the surrounding environment by moving his or her eyes and nothing more. Unlike we humans, dogs do not put on a “happy face” and smile when they are sad. If they are depressed, we know it.
There is no doubt that whatever emotion a dog is experiencing will come through in a raw, unfiltered way. If your pooch is angry or feels threatened, you will know it by the growling, barking, and aggressive posturing, for which he or she will not apologize.
Dogs are also not self-conscious, and therefore do not hide the fact that they are nervous or anxious. They may pace, chew on forbidden objects, or perform that amazing feat of making their hair stand on end. They feel what they feel and that’s that. It’s going to show!
The fact that dogs do not conceal their emotions is actually a good thing. This is because lethargy, anxiety, or illness will readily show in their actions and behavior, thus allowing us to get to the bottom of the problem. Wouldn’t it make life a lot easier if humans could do the same, without worrying about keeping up appearances? That leads us to wonder if our dogs feel sorry for us. After all, they are usually attuned to our feelings and if they could talk, they would probably ask us why we smiled sweetly at that person whom they know we can’t stand. Let’s face it, if we are honest with ourselves, we envy the freedom a dog has to express what he or she feels without fear of consequences. Unfiltered, unchecked emotions are a curious thing to most people, but to a dog…it’s only natural.