If your dog has been standing with its head down, this post will show you likely reasons why and what you can do about them.

So, why does my dog stand with its head down? Likely reasons why your dog stands with its head down are that it is being submissive, it has an injury or that it is smelling something on the floor.

There are a number of possible reasons why your dog stands with its head down, but the most likely reason will depend on the context.

Why does my dog stand with its head down?

Below are likely reasons why your dog stands with its head down and what would make each of them more likely to be the main reason.

Your dog is being submissive

Dogs will lower their heads when they are being submissive and it is likely to be a part of the reason why your dog has been lowering its head. This would be more likely if your dog does it more when you are annoyed with it or when you are standing directly in front of it or if it tends to do it when it is around other dogs that are larger than it.

Your dog has an injury

Another possible cause is that your dog has gotten an injury. This would be more likely if your dog has started doing it suddenly, it has been dragging its head around and if it has been moving its head around unusually. In this case, the best option would be to take your dog to a vet.

Old age

A part of the cause could also be that your dog has become weaker as it has gotten older. This would be more likely if your dog is an old dog and if it has gradually started lowering its head more as it has gotten older.

Your dog is smelling something

Another possible reason is that your dog is smelling something. This would be more likely if your dog does not always stand with its head down and if it sniffs things when it does it.

Anxiety

It could also be the case that something has been causing it to be anxious. This would be more likely if it lowers its head when it is more likely to be anxious such as when there are unusual noises coming from outside like thunder.

Things to consider

Below are some things to consider to help figure out the main reason why your dog has been doing it.

If your dog has always stood with its head down

If your dog did not always stand with its head down, it would help to consider what else happened when your dog first started doing it. If it started doing it suddenly, it could be because something has been causing it to feel anxious, something has been intimidating it or because it has gotten an injury.

What is different when your dog does not stand with its head down

It would also help to consider the timing of when your dog stands with its head down since the timing could have something to do with it. For example, if your dog tends to do it more when you are interacting with it, the cause would be more likely to be that it is being submissive.

What to do about your dog standing with its head down

Below are some options you have when dealing with the behavior.

Get help

If your dog seems to have been doing it due to an injury or it has been doing it excessively, the safest option would be to take it to the vet for a checkup. By doing so, you should be able to get expert advice tailored towards your particular dog and to deal with medical causes.

Avoid intimidating it

If it seems like your dog has been getting intimidated by yourself, it would help to try to interact with it more calmly and to avoid aggressive movements around it. If it seems to be due to something in its environment, it would help to try to limit things that might be intimidating it or to let it stay in a different part of the house.

Let it do it

If your dog seems to be doing it due to smelling things, it would be the easiest option to let your dog continue doing it. Also, it would help to avoid trying to force your dog to keep its head up regardless of the cause since it will likely make your dog feel threatened or it might hurt your dog.

Why does my dog lower its head when I pet it?

If your dog lowers its head when you pet it, the cause is likely to be that your dog is being submissive or that your dog is trying to encourage your dog to pet it in a different manner.

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Author

I created and currently manage Pet Dog Owner, the website you can go to when you have questions about your dog's behavior. It is my hope that you find Pet Dog Owner to be a helpful resource. It is also my hope that it will help you to improve your relationship with your dog. You can read more about me and my website here.