5 Bizarre Dog Behaviors That Are Actually Very Normal
Bringing a dog home can almost always make a human’s life more enjoyable. However, sometimes they can exhibit some pretty odd behaviors that can be difficult to interpret.
Dogs, because they are adopted at such a young age, acclimate to life at their new home by engaging in certain behaviors that may seem odd, but are actually very normal. Here are some odd-looking behaviors that your pooch might participate in, and the "why" behind them:
Dogs can sometimes get random bursts of energy called frenetic random activity periods (FRAPS). This is more commonly referred to as “the zoomies,” where they run at extreme paces in circles.
This may seem strange, but not to worry, the zoomies are the result of a happy, healthy pup. Leanne Jakubowsky, DVM, said in an interview with Insider: "It's a way to release pent-up energy, but only happy, healthy dogs get the zoomies."
Dogs will often lick humans to show affection, but sometimes dogs can excessively lick hands, arms and other body parts to such extremes that it may seem odd or unusual. When a dog is excessively licking, this could be a way for them to soothe themselves and relieve stress.
According to the American Kennel Club, “If your dog is licking themselves, you, or objects excessively, to the point that it seems like a self-stimulatory behavior, this might be a sign of anxiety…”
Twitching or Whimpering in their Sleep
More often than not, dog owners can be woken up in the middle of the night to their dog’s soft barking. They may even notice their canine moving their legs and paws around, too. It almost looks as though the dog might be chasing something.
This may actually be the case. If a dog is twitching in their sleep, it most likely means that they are just dreaming. Just like humans, dogs go through stages of rapid-eye-movement (REM) sleep.
This behavior is nothing to worry about – your furry friend is probably dreaming about running with their owner or even chasing a squirrel.
Dogs will lean against their owner’s legs as a sign of affection. To a dog, its owner is everything – their sun, moon and stars! They will do anything to exhibit that love in the ways they know to communicate, and leaning acts as a sort of "hug" from your best four-legged friend.
Calm Behavior with Babies
When a dog is around a new baby, they are exceptionally calm. It is almost as if they know they need to be gentle around the newborn. This is because dogs can mirror a human’s body language and verbal cues.
When a dog notices how gentle humans are with new babies, they are able to copy that same behavior. A dog can also sense that the baby is the youngest member “of the pack.” This initiates an instinctual urge in the dog to protect and care for the baby.
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