Your pup's actions tell you a lot about his mood. And although you may not be fluent in the canine tongue–short of what it means when it salivates–you do need to learn how to interpret dog behavior. Have you ever witnessed your dog licking certain textures or circling the same spot in front of you? There are many reasons a specific dog state of mind or health concern may cause him to do these things. Once you pay attention to his behavior, you'll be able to help him.
The most important part of training your dog is teaching her that it pays to do things you like. But your dog also needs to learn that it doesn’t pay to do things you don’t like. Fortunately, discouraging unwanted behavior doesn’t have to involve pain or intimidation. You just need to make sure that behavior you dislike doesn’t get rewarded. Most of the time, dog motivations aren’t mysterious. They simply do what works! Dogs jump up on people, for example, because people pay attention to them as a result. They can learn not to jump up if we ignore them when they jump up instead. It can be as simple as turning away or staring at the sky when your dog jumps up to greet or play with you. As soon as she sits, you can give her the attention she craves. If you stick to this plan, your dog will learn two things at once. Doing something you like (sitting) reliably works to earn what she wants (attention), and doing things you don’t like (jumping up) always results in the loss of what she wants.
From a young age, dogs engage in play with one another. Dog play is made up primarily of mock fights. It is believed that this behavior, which is most common in puppies, is training for important behaviors later in life. Play between puppies is not necessarily a 50:50 symmetry of dominant and submissive roles between the individuals; dogs who engage in greater rates of dominant behaviors (e.g. chasing, forcing partners down) at later ages also initiate play at higher rates. This could imply that winning during play becomes more important as puppies mature.
The origin of the domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris or Canis familiaris) is not clear. Whole-genome sequencing indicates that the dog, the gray wolf and the extinct Taymyr wolf diverged around the same time 27,000–40,000 years ago. How dogs became domesticated is not clear, however the two main hypotheses are self-domestication or human domestication. There exists evidence of human-canine behavioral coevolution.
The term personality has been applied to human research, whereas the term temperament has been mostly used for animal research. However, both terms have been used interchangeably in the literature, or purely to distinguish humans from animals and avoid anthropomorphism. Personality can be defined as “a set of behaviors that are consistent over context and time”. Studies of dogs' personalities have tried to identify the presence of broad personality traits that are stable and consistent over time. more on this