Do Dogs Smile?
Ever looked at your pup after a run or an invigorating game of fetch and noticed the corners turned up around his open mouth? Or seen your dog bear his rarely-seen row of tiny front incisors? Ever been tempted to believe he’s smiling at you, wondering, ‘Can dogs even do that?’?
There are two ways of knowing. Firstly, you’ll need to pay attention to the area around the corners of a dog’s mouth and the upper lip, around the nose. The corners of a dog’s mouth are known as the commissures. When the skin in this area is relaxed, it causes the corners of a dog’s mouth to pull back, revealing a bit of the back molars and causing the tongue to loll. It is a very relaxed expression and if his eyes sparkle too, it’s a sure sign that your dog is a the very least, content in the moment.
Another smile that canine companions love to throw at you may at first seem like a warning sign. When your loving fur-baby gives you a look, with lips pulled back tightly over his front teeth, he is joyfully submitting to your alpha status. While a dog’s flews also retract into a snarl when they are feeling threatened, in this context, they’re just smitten with you.
The answer to your question – yes, dogs smile.