Dogs have a variety of body language cues, and the position of their ears is one of the most noticeable indicators of their mood or feelings. Here are five reasons why and when a dog’s ears might be back:
Fear Or Anxiety:
- Ears back and flat against the head: This is one of the most common ear movements that signal fear or anxiety. Dogs may put their ears back to make themselves look smaller and less threatening or to protect their ears from being bitten or scratched in a fight.
- Ears pinned back tightly: When a dog’s ears are pinned tightly against its head, it can indicate that they feel highly anxious or fearful. This can be a sign that they are feeling threatened or unsafe.
- Ears flattened and tilted back: Dogs may also flatten their ears and rock them back as a sign of fear or anxiety. This can protect their ears from harm or make them appear smaller and less threatening.
- Ears partially back: Dogs may put their ears back only slightly when feeling mildly anxious or unsure. This can signify that they are feeling uncomfortable or uncertain about a situation.
- Ears quivering: When a dog’s ears are trembling or shaking, it can signify they feel very anxious or scared. This can indicate that they need extra reassurance and support from their owner.
- Ears pinned back or down: Dogs may put their ears back or down as a sign of submission. This can indicate that they are acknowledging the dominance of another dog or person and are not a threat.
- Ears to the side: Dogs may also hold their ears to the side as a sign of submission. This can be a way of showing respect and deference to a more dominant dog or person.
- Ears relaxed: Dogs may also hold their ears rested when feeling submissive. This can indicate that they are not looking for a fight and are willing to submit to another dog or person.
- Ears flicking or moving quickly: Dogs may also flick their ears or move them soon as a sign of submission. This can show that they are not a threat and are willing to submit to another’s authority.
Ears forward and stiff: Dogs may hold their ears ahead and stiff when they are feeling aggressive. This can be a way of making themselves appear larger and more threatening to other dogs or people.
- Ears up and tilted forward: Dogs may also hold their ears and lean forward as a sign of aggression. This can indicate that they are ready to attack or defend themselves if necessary.
- Ears back and raised hackles: When a dog’s ears are pulled back, and its feathers (the fur along its back) are presented, it can be a sign of extreme aggression. This can be a warning sign that the dog is ready to attack if they feel threatened.
- Ears back and growling: Dogs may also put their ears back and growl as a sign of aggression. This can be a warning sign that the dog is feeling threatened or agitated and may attack if provoked.
- One ear up and one ear back: Dogs may also hold one ear up and one ear back as a sign of aggression. This can indicate that they feel defensive and ready to attack if necessary.
The Dog is listening intently:
- Ears forward: Dogs may hold their ears ahead and upright when listening intently. This can indicate that they are focused on a specific sound or trying to locate the noise source.
- Ears perked up: Dogs may also perk their ears when listening intently. This can be a way of trying to capture every sound and detail in their environment
- Ears twitching or moving: When a dog’s ears are twitching or moving, it can signify that they are actively listening and processing the sounds around them. This can be a good indication that they are engage and interested in their surroundings.
- Ears cocked to one side: Dogs may also hold their ears cocked to one side when listening intently. This can be a way of trying to pinpoint the location of a sound or signal.
Happiness or relaxation:
Ears in a natural position: Dogs may hold their ears in a wild place when they are happy and relaxed. This can indicate that they are comfortable and content in their environment.
- Ears slightly back and relaxed: Dogs may hold their ears slightly back and in a relaxed position when feeling happy and comfortable. This can indicate that they are at ease and not feeling threatened or anxious.
- Ears flopped to the side: Some dogs may also let their ears drop when they are happy and relaxed. This can signify trust and comfort, indicating they feel safe and secure in their surroundings.