The most recent CAAB Chat webinar covers the topics of hugging dogs, canine displacement behavior, and why dogs lick faces. Presented by Certified Applied Animal Behaviorists Dr. Suzanne Hetts and Dr. Dan Estep.

Three Current Issues Surrounding Body Language
With chatters Suzanne Hetts, Ph.D., CAAB & Daniel Estep, Ph.D., CAAB

There’s been some interesting discussions going around the web lately surrounding canine communication and body language that we thought were deserving of a Chat.

The three issues we’ll be discussing are:

Hugging Dogs: Has it really been proven that dogs don’t like to be hugged? This has been discussed on the internet but it’s pertinent to a topic we’ve become even more passionate about lately – “science says” claims and what scientific research is, and isn’t.

Misunderstandings about Displacement Behaviors: Are displacement behaviors good indicators of stress? Displacement behaviors have been connected to uncertainty about how animals to respond in a given context. When did they become indicators of stress and fear and is there any scientific rationale for those interpretations? A related question is what are the criteria for labeling a behavior as a displacement behavior?  We’ve seen examples of behaviors given this label that are not congruent with the definition of a displacement behavior.

Why Do Dogs Lick Our Faces?  We’ve seen examples in online discussions and social media of dogs licking people’s faces, both children and adults. Professionals seem to view these as endearing in some contexts and as social distancing behaviors in others. Why the difference?  What criteria are being used to make one interpretation over another?

We’ll Chat about these issues and share some relevant scientific literature as well as our opinions.

For more information and to register for this webinar, visit:

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