What Your Dog’s Ears Tell You? TOP 7 Dog Ear Signs!

Would you like to discover what your dog’s ears are telling you? There are these TOP 7 signs dogs give out with their ears that you might not be aware of.

So, what are these signs?

Unlike us humans, dogs have to resort to non-verbal signs to communicate. Non-verbal speech encompasses various positions and movements of the tail, ears, eyes, body, etc.

Let’s take a look at the TOP 7 dog ear signs.

Shall we?

TOP 7 Signs Your Dog’s Ears Send You

Top 7 dog ear signs

Dogs love owners who understand their non-verbal speech, and they are unhappy with owners who don’t. That’s why being able to interpret their signs is so important.

TOP 7 dog ear signs:

7. Neutral Position

If your dog’s ears are in a neutral position,it’s a good sign they’re relaxed. A neutral position of the ears implies that they’re not high up in the air, hanging down, or leaning forward.

Along with the relaxed ears, see if you can spot some other signs your dog is feeling serene, such as:

  • soft eyes with no fixed gaze,
  • big, open mouth,
  • drooping tongue,
  • leaning onto you.

No matter what dog breed you’re working with, relaxed ears should always carry the same meaning.

6. Fully Upright (Pricked Ears)

Dogs with pricked ears are feeling focused and playful. They are listening in, and are expecting something fun and exciting to happen.

Along with upright ears, you might notice signs such as:

  • looking directly at their play partner,
  • open mouth,
  • a relaxed stance.

5. Cautious / Concerned Ears

As you can probably guess, this is the stance of a dog who just heard something strange and is wary. Apart from the apparent concern, you may also find:

  • a raised tail,
  • the body shifted forward,
  • closed mouth.

Such a dog is tense and ready to react.

4. Ears Are Moving Back & Forth

When outside, dogs often find themselves in situations they’ve never encountered before, which may cause them stress and anxiety.

This is most often…

…a sign that your dog is a little bit worried and is trying to figure something out.

If your dog’s ears are changing position and moving back and forth, try to calm them down and help them cope with whatever’s agitating them.

A worried dog’s jaw is usually firmly closed.

3. Pinned Ears

When the ears are pinned back, it could signify either happiness or anxiety.

So, how to figure out which of the two it is?

In order to understand what your dog is telling you, you have to look for…

…other signs your dog is giving out:

  • If their ears are relaxed, they are happy.
  • If your dog seems tense instead, it signals anxiety.

2. Extremely Pinned Ears

When a dog exhibits excessively pinned-back ears, paired with other signs such as stiffness and a tail tucked between the legs, it’s clear they are very afraid.

Try to calm down your dog.


Take them to a place where they feel safe. Pet them; let them know you’ll protect them.

1. Dog Ears Are Pinned Back, But Not Against The Head

The final sign we’ll touch on is ears that are pulled back, but not pinned flat against the head. This sign also hints at how your dog might be feeling.

In this case, something seems to be making your dog sad.

If you happen to spot this, try to divert their attention by playing with them (if you’re in need of ideas, I have a video on the top 10 best games for dogs).


I hope I’ve been able to bring you a step closer to understanding the language of dogs and interpreting the signals they send out with their ear movements.

What Your Dog’s Ears Tell You?

Top 7 dog ear signs show you everything that dogs tell you with the position of their ears. Of course, there are many other things to learn about dog communication,…

…so stay with us!

About Author:

I'm a dog food judge. I specialize in examining dog food nutrition so that I can recommend you food that will preserve your dog's health and extend his life. Good food will help you prevent dog health problems like obesity, diabetes, pancreatitis, gastroenteritis, nutritional imbalance, and many others. Also, by preventing serious illnesses you won't have to pay huge veterinarian bill later.

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