Why Dogs Wag Their Tail?

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Why Dogs Wag Their Tail?

June 11, 2023 5 min read

Why Dogs Wag Their Tail?

Disliking the tail is a natural instinct for most mammals, and a symbol that is important. The tail is a long, flexible piece of tissue that can be wiggly or straight.

Many species of animal have a tail, called a clausula caudata or hammertail in Latin. These tails are useful for balancing and maneuvering purposes.

The dog is no exception! Despite their size, dogs can move with amazing speed. This makes them perfect candidates for using a tail as an aid during exercise.

Many researchers believe that using atail as an aid inercise could help improve health and performance parameters such as cardiovascular health, body composition, and metabolic control. This article will discuss why dogs like to wiggle their tails and what research has been done on this subject.

Simplified explanation

Why dogs wag their tail?

A dog’s tail is for a very specific reason.

The purpose of a dog’s tail is to help with balance. When a dog walks, his or her rear end must work to keep the body on track. This requires the tail to help prevent the feet from wandering or helping in this process.

Because of this, dogs have two tails: one short and thick at the bottom and one longer and thinner at the end. When a dog is pregnant, the shorter and thicker edge of the tail may be thicker and curveier. When it comes time for pups to have a new mom, she can easily wrap it around so that it hangs lessly off her back.

Dogs communicate with each other by tail wagging

Why dogs wag their tail?

Most people know what dogs do when they’re nervous or excited. They jump up and wag their tail. But did you know that other animals wag their tail as a sign of socialization?

Dogs get so excited when they see a new person that they wiggle their rear ends back and forth. This is called socialization. You get invited to visit with your dog, or he or she gets invited to visit with you.

The way you introduce your dog to the world is how you make history with your own pet. If you are not comfortable having your dog in public situations, there are ways to protect and educate dogs at the same time.

Good behavior training can be done in a housetrained, outdoor environment setting where your pet is familiar with humans and animals.

Tail wagging indicates the dog’s emotional state

Why dogs wag their tail?

When a dog is nervous, stressed, or suffering from an emotional condition, his tail can wiggle rapidly. This indicates the dog is aware of his surroundings and in need of your attention.

Nervous dogs tend to scrunch their tail into a circle. This shows intensity of emotion such as excitement or fear.

Stressed dogs tend to drum their tail on the ground with increased frequency.

Awkwardly socialised dogs may roll their tail between their legs and stick it in a bag until they meet someone who likes it. Like the previous awkward socialised dog, this one will eventually be accepted!

When you take your dog out of the house, if they are wagging their tail they should stop immediately to let them get ready.

Different tail positions mean different things

Most dogs get their tail tip position from watching other dogs. Since most dogs have a relatively flat rear end, you can predict how they wag their tail for position.

The typical position is with the tail tip resting on the back ground as the dog sits. When the dog sits, the tail is in a pre-positioned position with the rear end parallel to the floor.

When the dog stands, the tail is out and up in a tails up posture. The rear end is tucked in as if there was an invisible belt holding it in place.

Both of these positions mean similar things though. A high pitched whine or bark means that your dog is in pain, so make sure to help them get comfortable before trying any treatments.

Watch your dog to see what their tail is doing

Why dogs wag their tail?

If you notice your dog is wagging their tail more or less often, you can assume it is doing so for a good reason.

The tail is one of your dog’s legs and they use it to move. When your dog uses the tail, they are practicing how to use their leg properly.

Plus, if you take a look at your dog’s coat, you will see that the tail is usually longer than the rest of their body. This is evidence that the tail was used as a means of mobility.

As dogs get bigger, it can be harder to use the little legs on the little dogs.

Some dogs will not wag their tails

Why dogs wag their tail?

Although it may seem odd or quirky, some dogs will be born without a tail. This is rare, and usually occurs when the dog is pregnant.

A pregnant dog has special needs during gestation, including food and access to conceive. Luckily, this beautiful puppy was met with adoption success!

If your dog has a tail, it may grow longer or stop growing at all. The tail may even come off or disappear completely.

This happens for several reasons. One of the most common is if the dog gets treated with drugs such as antibiotics or antiparasitics. Another reason for a tail to go missing is if it is amputated.

A third possible reason for a dog having a no-tail (or tails-less) condition is if the dog was cut at birth and its tail was taken away.

Tail position relates to the direction of the wag

Why dogs wag their tail?

When a dog is not walking, it can be more difficult to determine whether or not it is tailing or non-tailing.

When a dog is walking, its tail can be in the wrong position for the rhythm of the feet. This occurs when the dog is getting some confidence in its walk.

When a dog tails very occasionally, it may be flush-tailed at one point in the day and crop-tailed at another. At these times, it may also wag its tail more moderately.

At times when a dog must wag its tail more strenuously, such as when jumping or chasing something, it must produce greater volume of flow-backed air out of its lungs to wiggle out the tail. The harder he jumps or startsleling, the thicker and longer his tail must be!

Beware of overzealous tails! A crop-tailed tail can point up or down indicating varying levels of excitement.

Dog fur hides the tail movement somewhat

Why dogs wag their tail?

There are a few reasons a dog may do a tail wiggle. The most common is when the dog is walking at a comfortable pace. If you notice your dog wiggling their rear at any time, it is doing this motion to relax and sync with you.

But there may be other reasons too! A possible cause of tail wiggle in dogs is called entropion. Entropion occurs when one side of the tail becomes permanently straight, and the other side rotates clockwise.

Tail entropion can also occur in dogs, causing them to twist their base as they walk. This causes them to wiggle the extra tail it has onside as well.

Another cause of tail wiggle in dogs is inflammation or infection around the stifle joint or hip area. This usually happens in older dogs, because they have trouble keeping it aligned with the leg movement.

Cindy PetsForLife
Cindy PetsForLife

Hello, I'm Cindy, the founder of PetsForLife. I am a true animal lover with 3 cats and 1 dog of my own. My passion for all things pets has led me to create a unique collection of personalized pet gifts. Check out our personalized pet gifts on our website.

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