DOGS BEHAVIOR

My dog ​​is chattering his teeth; why and what to do?

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Your dog is chattering his teeth and you do not know why or how to stop this behavior ?

There are always explanations and, above all, solutions for every problem you encounter with your dog.

We will see how to respond to your problem: we will first see why a dog has chattering teeth, what it means, and especially what to do if it happens frequently.

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My dog ​​is chattering his teeth: why?

Chattering teeth out of fear

In a very general way, the chattering of teeth is often associated with dogs with a more or less high stress state. The chattering of teeth may then be accompanied by tremors and a general body condition that is not very alert.

But beware, here chattering teeth will only be the tip of the iceberg.

If you do not want him to absolutely stop this behavior, it will be much more efficient and productive to find the cause of your dog‘s stress in order to resolve the problem in-depth and no longer on the surface.

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Chattering teeth to communicate

Like many signals such as growling or barking, the chattering of teeth is one of the communication tools that the dog can use to express discomfort.

We can then observe chattering of teeth during confrontations / meetings between two dogs for example or when someone makes contact inappropriately with a dog.

Here, the chattering of teeth will then be a kind of shield for the dog, which he will use to scare away the object of his discomfort. This signal will often be accompanied by other avoidance signals such as growling, nose licking, yawning, recoil, bark, etc.

Chattering teeth to exteriorize too much energy

The chattering of teeth can also be observed when the dog shows impatience and excitement at the approach of an activity that he loves: going for a walk, eating, the return of his master, a play session. , etc.

Chattering teeth for attention

If when your dog is chattering his teeth you systematically give him your full attention, he may start chattering his teeth just for you to take care of him.

Be careful because this is often the case with bored dogs!

Snap teeth to analyze the olfactory messages of congeners

This phenomenon is called “Flehmen”, a German term which means to raise the upper lip. Clearly, when a dog smells an odor left by a fellow creature (and more particularly the urine left by a bitch in heat), he uses his sense of smell, of course, but to analyze the odor more precisely, he also uses his palace.

To do this, the dog smells an odor, opens its mouth, saliva and rolls up its upper lip to allow the odor to reach the organ which will allow it to analyze it. And this behavior can then be accompanied by chattering of teeth.

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Chattering teeth because it’s too cold

Just like us, dogs can chatter their teeth if they are too cold. This is a completely natural behavior, but it will be necessary to watch out if you consider that the temperatures do not justify such tremors and chattering of teeth on your dog’s part.

The dogs most affected by these chattering teeth at low temperatures are dogs with a very light coat and in particular an undercoat that does not guarantee them good protection against bad weather.

My dog ​​is chattering his teeth: what to do concretely?

As mentioned previously, if you observe a state of stress or fear in your dog, resulting in chattering of the teeth, seek more to find the cause of his stress and then put in place possible habituation therapies , immersion or desensitization to make it more comfortable in certain situations.

Do not hesitate to call on a behavioral dog trainer to assist you in this process which can be long and delicate to deal with.

If your dog is chattering his teeth to express discomfort and to communicate with his peers or other people (or even you) , his message should not be ignored and taken into account.

Indeed, if he chatters his teeth in front of another dog, wait to see if the other dog understands and accepts the “refusal of contact” of your dog and if this is not the case, intervene and allow your dog to “move on” by diverting it towards another behavior, another activity.

It is very important to let dogs communicate with each other , but sometimes some dogs do not receive messages properly and persist in making contact. It is then necessary to intervene to avoid any incident.

Likewise, if your dog is chattering his teeth in front of someone else or in front of you, you absolutely must stop the current action to avoid possible aggression from your dog.

We are fortunate to have animals that warn and alert us when they are not in a comfortable situation, it is up to us not to miss their messages and allow them to be better and more comfortable in this or that situation.

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If we do not take into account the messages and signals of warning and avoidance of our dogs, they will not end up bothering to warn us and will go directly to aggression to escape an uneasy situation or even threatening to them.

If your dog is chattering his teeth out of excitement or getting your attention, it may indicate lack of expenditure. Here the solution is simple: spend your dog, keep him occupied when he is alone at home or when you cannot take care of him.

Remember, a dog needs to exert himself physically , mentally and scent every day in order to thrive.

Finally, suppose you can not find an answer to the chattering of your dog’s teeth after reading the main causes and solutions mentioned above. In that case, I invite you to consult your veterinarian so that he can help you understand your dog’s behavior.

Indeed, unexplained teeth chattering can sometimes hide a physical or neurological problem or a potential disease. Your veterinarian will help you to rule out these possibilities or on the contrary to diagnose them and then treat them.

Final words and important recommendations

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