November 13, 2019 4 min read

While experienced dog owners might be able to easily tell how their dog is feeling, there are many people new to owning a dog or new to a specific breed that could use some more information on the subject. In this blog, we’ll show how to tell if your dog is happywith 8 easy-to-recognize signs. Learning this information will make you a happier owner, in turn making your dog an extra happy dog.

1 - Relaxed Eyes & Ears

An easy sign your dog is happy is the behavior and appearance of their eyes. Often, you will be able to distinguish an anxious dog from a calm dog by the alertness of his eyes and the arch of his eyebrows. Eyes and eyebrows also provide an easy way to tell if your dog is in a good mood. If your dog is blinking frequently, has a calm brow and his gaze appears soft and relaxed, chances are you have a happy dog on your hands. You’ll also be able to see if your dog is pleased by the position of his ears. A dog in a good mood will have his ears relaxed or floppy, not pointed or on alert. His countenance might also seem to be bearing a smile. These are a few good signs your dog is happy.

2 - No Destructive Behaviors

Want to know how to tell if your dog is happy? Ask yourself the simple question: Has my dog done anything especially bad or destructive lately? Dogs who are relaxed and happy tend to express those feelings by being generally reserved or adhering (to some extent) to the rules you’ve set for him around the house. An anxious or frustrated dog might rip apart furniture, bark frequently, or be especially skittish around the house. A happy dogwon’t do these things.’

3 - Wants to Play

One of the most prominent signs your dog is happy is how much he wants to play. A playful dog who wants to spend time with their owner without behaving in a destructive manner is in a good mood. Playfulness is an expression of delight and curiosity. There are few better signs your dog is happy than this one.

4 - Belly & Tongue Exposed

Another great indicator of happiness in dogs is what body parts they’re willing to expose. Showing their belly, a vulnerable part of the body expresses how comfortable a dog is in their surroundings, and generally, they will only do this if they are in a great mood. Often, showing their belly is an invitation to come and play, which we already know is one way how to tell if your dog is happy. Another indicator is if their tongue is out. An exposed tongue means in all likelihood your dog is in a good place.

8 Signs Your Dog Is Happy - How to Tell

5 - Good Appetite

Does your dog have a solid appetite? Are they eating regularly and not skipping out on their scheduled meals? If you want to know how to tell if your dog is happy, all you need to do is keep an eye on their appetite. A depressed or ailing dog will generally not eat with the same voracity or consistency as a happy, satisfied dog. Keep an eye out for how your dog behaves at mealtime and a sign of their mood will be easy to find.

6 - Desiring Contact

Dogs who are in a delighted mood tend to want to express that to their owners by rubbing up against them and asking to be stroked. Dogs who are in a bad mood will probably express that by asking to be left alone. In this way, they’re not so different from children. If your dog is constantly running up to you and leaning into you, you know you have a happy dog. If you’re sitting on the couch and he jumps into your lap and rolls around asking to be pet, bingo, you’ve got a dog in a great mood.

7 - Relaxed Body & Wagging Tail

One thing everyone knows to look for in a dog is a wagging tail. Generally, this is the most obvious sign your dog is in a good mood. If the tail is wagging, you’re in for a good time with your pup. If the tail is down and his body looks tense or is arched in a particular way, you might have a dog with a bit of a problem. In this case, approach them slowly and let them know you’re there for them. As soon as you get that tail wagging and you see their body beginning to loosen up, you’ll no longer be asking how to tell if your dog is happy.

8 - Play Bowing

Another indicator of happiness in dogs is the position their body takes when they’re inviting you to play. Often, dogs in delighted moods will lean their front half toward the ground and keep their butts high in the air, as if they’re bowing. This is them trying to tempt you into playing and is a sure sign your dog is happy. If your dog is doing this consistently, you know you have a pet who loves you and wants to spend valuable time with you.

We hope you now know how to tell if your dog is happy. If you have any more signs you think indicate good moods in dogs, please share them in the comments section. We’d love to hear from you!