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Annie's most adorable "tell" if she is a bit uncertain/nervous and trying to relax (like in an unfamiliar place), is to lie near me, with her nose thrust into me, and breath me in. Second best is to lie facing away, with her back touching my foot.

I recently also discovered if she is genuinely scared, she may ask me to pick her up, like when she was a puppy.

Do your dogs have any self comforting behaviours you watch for?
 

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Peggy's the queen of the long sniff. She'll push the top of her head into my chest so I think she wants an ear rub, but then I hear it: Sniffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffff.

It's pretty much her standard morning greeting, but makes me laugh every time.

Now that I think about it, I'm not sure what she does to comfort herself. I need to pay better attention.

If something's scaring her, she may growl or bark to show her discomfort. She will also stretch way out towards it while bracing her back legs in a very cartoon-like way. She actually just did this with our patio umbrella (which, might I add, she's encountered at least a dozen times before with zero issue).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Annie does the extra cautious barking/growling too, if uncomfortable. I just find it fascinating to watch dogs try to reassure themselves (And am flattered that she uses me as a safety blanket sometimes).

Trixie goes to her crate, or asks to be picked up, or goes between our legs, or hides under something.
 

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Pogo used to carry a stuffed animal around and shake it when he was frustrated. He was known around the neighborhood for going on walks with his teddy bears. When he saw a squirrel or another dog he would bounce, stiff legged, while barking "mrowmph mrowmph" around the bear in his mouth.
 

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Pogo used to carry a stuffed animal around and shake it when he was frustrated. He was known around the neighborhood for going on walks with his teddy bears. When he saw a squirrel or another dog he would bounce, stiff legged, while barking "mrowmph mrowmph" around the bear in his mouth.
That is so cute, I could cry.

I really need to start bringing something for Peggy to carry on walks. She's good about grabbing a toy or chew to calm herself down at home when she gets mouthy. Would be great if I could stuff something in her mouth when she meets people outside.

She also often grabs a chew when my husband walks into the room.

Gracie used to lick when she was anxious: The couch, a blanket, a paw.....

I was on MTV years ago and she stole the show, staring straight into the camera and licking the couch while I was being interviewed.

Thinking about it now, she also used to lick when my husband walked into the room. I wonder if he makes dogs nervous??
 

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Gracie used to lick when she was anxious: The couch, a blanket, a paw.....

I was on MTV years ago and she stole the show, staring straight into the camera and licking the couch while I was being interviewed.
I laughed at that image!

Mia's sole self-soothing strategy is to find me and order me to entertain her/solve her problem/do her bidding. If it ain't broke... 🤷‍♀️

But when she was injured a few weeks ago, she wanted me to sit next to her on her bed, close enough to touch, which was a comfort to both of us. I spent the weekend with the lights off, laying on the (surprisingly comfortable) dog bed, back to back with Mia, watching Netflix and reading PF.
 
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