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On Talking Terms with Dogs: Calming Signals

4.23  ·  Rating Details ·  1,697 Ratings  ·  112 Reviews
One of our all time best selling books is now in its second edition with three additional chapters, color photos and descriptive captions. Turid Rugaas is a noted expert on canine body language, notably "calming signals" which are signals dogs give to other dogs and humans to denote stress and to attempt defuse situations that otherwise might result in fights or aggression ...more
Paperback, 78 pages
Published December 1st 2005 by Dogwise Publishing (first published January 1st 2005)
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Ryan It's been a little while since I read this but it isn't really a step by step guide for implementing the knowledge but rather a small booklet that…moreIt's been a little while since I read this but it isn't really a step by step guide for implementing the knowledge but rather a small booklet that explains methods and some of the logic behind them. I found the information to be valuable and there are suggestions within on how to use it but it is largely up to you to recognize and apply the concepts yourself. The information is clear and pictures are used to demonstrate... I'd say that it is easy to follow and understand. (less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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María Paz Greene
A mí me gustan mucho los animales, pero le tengo miedo a los perrines desde que uno me mordió cuando era chica. No es un miedo corrosivo, y puedo ir sola por la calle sin despertar la animadversión de nuevos perrines, gracias a que alguna vez leí que era mi propia agitación la que podía asustarlos, y a que desde entonces cuido mucho mi postura física, y lo que expreso con ella.

Este librito fue crema de cicatrización sobre aquella herida vieja (aunque todavía te juzgo, Bilbo, yo tenía solamente d
Apr 28, 2012 Amelia rated it really liked it
Short and sweet, this booklet should be required reading for anyone who interacts with dogs (that's a lot of people). A big paradigm shift occurs when you start noticing the many, many times that your dog says "that makes me feel uncomfortable" or "could you please stop doing that". It's a shift away from "don't worry, he's fine" to "hey there buddy, are you okay"? We expect an awful lot of dogs, but aren't the best at listening to them and respecting their actual needs.

Though the content is ve
Mar 17, 2010 Lauren rated it really liked it
Wow! Turid Rugaas brings a whole new perspective to dog rehabilitation. This is a must-read for EVERY dog owner. I purchased this book along with the DVD. The DVD sure helps Turid solidify her points. I have an "ambassador" dog much like Turid's that helps me rehab the rescue dogs I foster. Much of what he does she talks about in this book, and here I was thinking I was crazy (well, that's what people tell me, anyway.) If you do rescue work, you are doing a disservice to the dogs you foster (and ...more
Sarah ♥ Vutch forever ♥
Aug 31, 2015 Sarah ♥ Vutch forever ♥ rated it really liked it
This is a great book and a must for every dog owner or in general people who have to deal with dogs.

Turid Rugaas describes the calming signals and gives several examples from her experience as a dog trainer.

Jun 17, 2014 Kerry rated it really liked it
Recommended to Kerry by: Fjellanger
This was interesting. It made me feel badly about how we train Indiana, a little bit. I think that she is actually worse at interacting with other dogs than when we first got her, and I think that that is our fault: now that we know she has the capacity to get all hot & bothered, we tense up when another dog comes around, and proactively try to discipline her before she actually does something wrong. I'm trying to untrain myself and deal with the situation in other ways, because of reading t ...more
Anxo Cunningham
May 04, 2016 Anxo Cunningham rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Básico pero exhaustivo, profundo pero sin ser redundante, personal y con un montón de ejemplos. Es un libro imprescindible para cualquiera que trate con perros o al que le gusten los perros. En tan pocas páginas va a cambiar (siempre a mejor) la relación que tienes con ellos y cómo los entiendes.
Jan 27, 2013 Margarat rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone!
Shelves: dogs
Everyone should read this book. Whether you own a dog or not, in our culture today you interact with them in either case. Having everyone learn dog calming signals would go a long way toward solving the problems that arise from people completely misunderstanding dogs, in particular reducing stress that leads to bites (which usually lead to the punishment or death of the dog). Turid Rugaas offers truly groundbreaking information and allows us a window on dog social behavior as well as the epiphan ...more
I found this book so helpful for my "reactive dog". Instead of barking constantly she slowly began to look to me more to "check in"& I was able to tap into my canine self and communicate. Fun -especially when using the "yawn" technique. Try it out! Author has a good online site with basic info. I got the DVD which is helpful. Now I look for cues & have a new way to observe & interact with dogs. Woof! There is an interesting explination about Pitbulls, how the common language of dog c ...more
Nov 12, 2012 Sara rated it it was amazing
This is a very informative little book. Turid Rugaas really knows dogs and what their bodies are telling us and other dogs. I highly recommend this to anyone who owns a dog, or who is around dogs. It really opened my eyes to some behaviors that I've noticed but never gone the next step to understand what they really mean.
Adding her other books to my list!!
Sep 01, 2016 M rated it really liked it
Great little book that gives some insight into dog behavior--with other dogs, people, and things. I learned a great deal from reading this and it has given me some techniques to use with Millie!
Mar 12, 2017 Eros rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Una muy buena lectura para iniciarse en la comprensión del interesante mundo del lenguaje de los perros. Muchas veces caemos en rutinas y seguimos pautas en nuestra relación con nuestros perros que se apoyan en creencias erróneas y en una total falta de conocimiento de cómo los perros se comunican. Entender sus gestos, sus señales de calma, saber identificar la actitud de nuestro perro y relacionar sus movimientos con ciertas situaciones nos va a ayudar mucho a la hora de saber cómo actuar en ca ...more
Alida Near
Nov 05, 2016 Alida Near rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent book to help dog owners!

Wonderful , simple book to help dog owners become better 'parents' . Calming signals are well explained, and the photos illustrating various dog behaviors are very helpful.
Jan 17, 2017 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great for anyone with a dog or new puppy. Giving it 4 stars because going to the dog park is ruined now. I always knew there were idiot owners there but now I really know.
Nov 17, 2016 Irene rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: preferiti, dogs, scienza
Davvero molto interessante, mi sento di consigliarlo a qualunque proprietario di cane e non esclusivamente a chi intraprende un percorso di lavoro.
Il libricino è piccolo, sintetico e molto chiaro, racchiude tutte le informazioni necessarie.
Marta G. Coloma
Este pequeño librito, que se lee fácilmente en un par de horas, es un breve manual de iniciación al lenguaje canino. Contiene consejos muy útiles para identificar las señales de calma con las que los perros se comunican en su día a día, ayuda a combatir miedos y explica por qué motivos pueden sufrir estrés estos animales. Al ser un texto tan básico, en el que se explican los fundamentos de comunicación con los canes, puede que se quede corto para aquellos que se relacionan a menudo con perros. P ...more
Oct 04, 2016 Steve rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
A quick read, containing some good, useful information. If you're not time constrained I think much of the same information can be found on the internet. For that reason I'm giving it a low rating - I don't feel like I got significant enough value for my money.
Jan 14, 2012 Nicholas rated it liked it
Clever and insightful book on the body language of dogs and the subtle signals they send to each other. I have an Aussie mix who's sensitive to loud noises, including raised voices, and a Husky mix that is leash aggressive. In both cases, I can see the anxiety in their behavior when thrust into situations they do not like. Unfortunately, those situations are unavoidable and I picked up this book to try and help soothe their distress and help them live longer more relaxed lives.

Rugaas has a lifet
Gwen Nicodemus
Feb 24, 2013 Gwen Nicodemus rated it it was amazing
Our leader talked about calm signals, stressed signals, and calming signals from dogs. I wanted this magical information to sink in more, so I did some searching and found On Talking Terms with Dogs: Calming Signals.

My biggest problem with the book is that it's Topaz at Amazon and I couldn't crack the DRM. I almost returned it. I have a general rule of returning any books I can't crack the DRM on. If I pay ten bucks for a book, I should be able to read it on my nook, ipad, phone, sony, computer,
Nan St.Michael
Jun 26, 2015 Nan St.Michael rated it it was amazing
I love the author's peaceful approach to working and living with dogs, a very understanding and common sense way to be with dogs. Turid's explanation of why dogs become shy or aggressive is very insightful. She explains that it is stress and goes on to explain why dogs get stressed, the signs of a stressed dog and how to calm a dog using a dogs own calming methods. She also explains why and how some dogs have forgotten their own language and how to help them remember it.
I have a rescued adult d
Jan 19, 2010 Caralee rated it it was amazing
The premise of this book is that dogs use certain body language to calm themselves, other dogs, and their owners down in periods of high stress. After reading this book, I found some of the information valuable. I've watched my dog at times I could tell she was stressed and lo and behold, there were calming signals. Unfortunately, what I wanted was to learn some calming signals to convey to her when I know she's scared or stressed. The book offers suggestions, but does not make it clear how the ...more
Nov 13, 2016 Leena rated it it was amazing
I was adopted by a dog and became a single pet parent... Parenting is challenging; inter-species parenting even more so... to cope I got in touch with a Canine Behaviorist; and the learning began...

Quoting Turid from the book... "a good relationship is based on two-way communication"... and Turid's book is an absolute eye opener in terms of how dogs communicate via 'Calming Signals'... the book is very easy to read with a lot of stories and pictures...

Reading and re-reading the book, and obser
Sep 28, 2013 Babble rated it really liked it
A short snappy book that makes a lasting impression; we're not communicating very well with our puppies, not at all. We don't understand their language or even notice they're speaking, and we don't even try to read their signals. Our dogs are speaking to us all the time, letting us know when they are overwhelmed or uncomfortable, trying to keep us calm - showing us how to have polite dog / human interactions.

People as the dominant species we are, seem to think everything should speak our langua
Sparrow Knight
Jan 10, 2015 Sparrow Knight rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science-y, animals
I grew up w/dogs, my mom showed dogs, my dogs were always remarked upon as being well-behaved. And yet, after watching the DVD & reading this book, I realized I knew very little about what the dogs were trying to tell me. The information in this & Sarah Kalnjas's DVD has revolutionized my training techniques, helping me to be a much more subtle & effective trainer. Being better able to read the dog's side of the conversation, combined w/clicker training, has made me a much better tra ...more
Aug 15, 2011 Tanya rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: All dog owners.
Recommended to Tanya by: Wagmore Canine Enrichment, Lawrence, KS
An illuminating look into how dogs communicate with one another. A quick read with great photographs, canine trainer/behaviorist Turid Rugaas explains canine body language and teaches you how to observe a dog's movements and reactions as a predictor for subsequent behavior. In this particular volume the reader learns that tail wagging isn't always friendly, depending on what the rest of the body is doing. The reader also learns about what it means means when a dog turns his head or licks his lip ...more
Jul 18, 2013 Daniel rated it it was amazing
This book changed my outlook on communicating with dogs and confirmed something I always had a suspicion of. This was a wonderful, short book on how to understand dogs in such a way that you can have a real relationship with them. There is no excuse for scaring a dog, or being aggressive or threatening towards it. Owning a dog is not a leader-slave relationship, it is a parent-dog relationship. Learn how to be a supportive, friendly parent to your dog, not an overbearing ruler. By learning what ...more
Jan 18, 2014 Cherise rated it liked it
While this book is not a dog training book , it takes an entirely different approach to communicating with dog's than say Ceasar Millan's philosophy . However They both recognize the importance of humans needing to learn the body language and facial expressions of their canine companions .
This is more of a human training book on how to have non verbal conversations with the dogs you encounter .

I'm excited to try the techniques demonstrated in this short book and see if I notice any difference
Tim Carter
Dec 30, 2013 Tim Carter rated it really liked it
The shelf "read" is a bit exaggerative for this book, as there isn't that much to read. But that isn't the purpose of a book on calming signals, the purpose is to show them, and this the book does well (and I actively recommend it on our site for this purpose).
However, I can't give it 5 stars because it's missing a LOT of info, not least on calming signals that we humans can use towards dogs, and about the fact that calming signals are just a subset of Sedatives - many of which are not a signal
Bronislava Sencakova
Mar 30, 2014 Bronislava Sencakova rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014_read
Konejšivé, resp. ukľudňujúce signály opísané v knihe tvoria komunikačný systém medzi psami navzájom i smerom k ľuďom. Ľudia sa ich môžu naučiť rozpoznávať a dokonca aj použiť na komunikovanie s psačími stvoreniami. České vydanie obsahuje kopec fotografií, takže so signálmi sa čitateľ vizuálne oboznámi aj bez psa.

Fajn príručka pre každého, kto prichádza do styku so psami. I pre tých, ktorí sa psov boja :) Prečítané je to asi za dve hodiny, potom stačí už len pozorovať v praxi a občas sa uistiť v
Nov 29, 2013 Crystal rated it it was amazing
I am currently in school with the eventual invention of training service or therapy dogs. We watched Turid's video from the 1990's and I really enjoyed it, so I picked up this book. I like her writing style and the way that she works with dogs (all positive reinforcement), which she has done for many many years. For a beginner, this would be a perfect book to help you understand the language of dogs. I highly recommend it.
Mar 23, 2014 Brenda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Turrid Rugaas is very insightful!

This book can be a lifesaver, it definitely helped me better understand a dog's simple body language I would often take in as non significant. It is a must read for anyone who is getting a dog, has one already our works with dogs, it will definitely make a difference in how you interact with dogs, in a much more appreciative way of their calming signals.
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Turid Rugaas is an internationally renowned trainer and writer who has devoted her life to dogs, their behavior and their well-being.

The Norwegian dog trainer has worked with dogs for many years and studied the body language of dogs for more than a decade. After a project where Turid and a colleague observed dogs carefully, recording their behaviour on video and in photographs, she became well-kno
More about Turid Rugaas...

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