♟️ Behavior Training

8 Common Dog Behaviors and What Do They Mean?

a black and white icon of a calendar
March 31, 2021

Key Takeaways

"Why is my pup doing this and that?" As a dog parent, you have probably asked yourself this question.

Our furry pals do different behaviors that can also say about their moods and health. In this article, we will focus on common dog behaviors and their meaning. We will answer why your pup is doing weird actions at home, like licking your floor.

Dogs may do these things because of various factors, including a specific state of mind or health issue. After you learn how it behaves, you'll be able to understand and probably give your pup the proper training or help that it needs.

8 Common Dog Behaviors and What Do They Mean?

Like people, each dog is unique. Every dog has a distinct personality, behavior, and attitude. Your job is to make sure that you understand its body language and why your dog is doing it. It's because the behavior may be bad that it may cause harm to you, to other people, or the health of your pup.

1.Frequent Biting

Does your dog bite often? If you have a puppy, frequent biting or nipping is common. It is a common way of how puppies communicate with their pet parents. So, it can nip while playing with other dogs and interact with its human parent. But you must control the nipping of your young pup before it develops into more problematic dog behavior.

Do you have trouble teaching your dog not to bite? Work with a professional trainer, or even better, with a veterinary behaviorist. These are experts that can give your dog customized training.

2.Uncontrollable Dog Circling

At first, it's fun to look at your dog chasing its tail. But if it has often been happening, you probably have to think twice. Dogs that don't stop and seem to control circling may have health issues. It could be ear infections or other syndromes that cause compulsive circling. Only a veterinarian can tell you if your pup is circling because of pain.

3.The Dog Keeps On Digging

Dogs love to keep on digging, even on cement or textile, for many reasons. Some breeds smell another animal and try to track it. At the same time, other breeds are just trying to find a perfect place to lie down. It is the standard behavior of dogs during the night or naps, and it is entirely normal.

But if it's bothering you or has caused damage to your furniture, you can work it out with a professional trainer. Expert animal behaviorists can help you reduce any stubborn habit of your pup.

4.Eating Poop

This dog's behavior sounds and looks gross. But do you know why some breeds do it? First, it can be because some young pups inherited it from their dog parents. It probably saw its mother or father clean the baby's feces. So, the puppy recalls this memory and tries to mimic it.

Fear and curiosity may also cause your dog to eat its feces. Eating poop can also mean that the dog has nutritional deficiencies. If your dog is eating waste, make sure you feed well-balanced food to keep malnutrition out of the picture.  

5.Excessive Panting

Panting is a dog's way to release the rest of their body heat. If your dog pants, it is usually too hot and is trying to cool down. Before engaging in any physical activity, ensure that your furry pal is regulating its temperature. The dog must have hydrated well, especially when the weather warms up.

Panting is common to breeds that have flat nozzles, like Pugs and Pitbulls. But always be aware of the speed and frequency of your dog's breathing. Increased panting may be a symptom of various other health issues, so consult your veterinarian if you have any concerns.

6.Sitting on Your Feet or Between Your Legs

Dogs also want to feel some "human touch," and they want to be just beside their owners, too. But sometimes, a pup sitting on your feet or between your legs can be a sign of anxiety or nervousness. It seems like your dog is looking for a safer place by staying close to you.

7.Dog Scooting

It is weird to see a dog sitting his bottom on the ground while dragging itself across the floor. Scooting may look funny, but it means that the dog feels irritated on its anus. The dog's anal sacs may be full of other allergies.


A dog that yawns could also display signs of anxiety or tension. It is either picking up negative vibes or fear for a less apparent cause. Forced introductions of dogs to other dogs or people are never a good idea, regardless of the situation.


Some dog behaviors are normal. It may be just the way they are. But others may also need attention, especially when it becomes disastrous or a health hazard. A social and highly energetic dog will not suddenly become lethargic and withdrawn unless it asks for help.


This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through my links at no cost to you. Please read my disclosure for more info. Clicking any of the links on this website does not increase the cost or affect the price for any item you purchased. Our main purpose is for informational purpose and not for just earning.

A Modern Dog Care Free Essential Guide

Modern Paws a FREE Ebook for Modern Dog Parents at www.scruffythedog.com
No spam ever. Read our Privacy Policy