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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone I just have a question about my Chihuahua/pomeranian that I cannot seem to find an answer about anywhere else. She often snarls during times of her excitement, such as when I walk in the door after being gone for awhile or when I give her praise, However she does NOT growl or try to bite and her tail is always wagging while she is doing this. It is almost as if she is smiling because she will even snarl and then proceed to lick my face in excitement with no signs of agression other than baring the teeth. Her body language is not congruent with the snarling behavior even to the slightest degree. My mother says that she can smile and then get my dog to copy her and respond with a snarl. I am not sure if this "smiling' theory is valid as I cannot find any other reports of this online. This behavior does not pose any problems or concerns for me but it does make me curious as I cannot find any reports of similiar behavior. If any one else has experienced this with their animal please let me know and if you have an explanation for this unusual behavior please share.

Thanks, Shane
 

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Huh, I've never heard of that before! Sorry, I'm absolutely no help there, but perhaps some of the more experienced members here will know.

Welcome to CP!
 

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Maybe something simulair to reversed sneezing?
It also can be a small flap of soft tissue in the throat. This flap will make a snarling sound when a dogs gets excited...
we have the same with a shihtzu. It a familiar thing with chi's and with dogs with short noses..

google on reversed sneezing, also on youtube, maybe you regocnize somthing simulair.
 

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There IS such a thing as a 'smile' in a dog. I witnessed it in a lovely golden retriever who when you came in the room he would pull his lips back into what looked like a snarl. Owner quickly told us he did this in greeting strangers. Not a mean bone in his body. He would lean into you for a pet, then go and lie down. I think this little one has the same thing. A little soft in temperment, and she has this reaction when she gets involved with the family. No punishments please. I don't think it is a 'correctable' thing. Good luck with her. Sue
 

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I've seen this before with dogs. It's just her personality. This is how she smiles & greets you. I think it's very cute & unique!! It's nothing to be concerned about, it's just the way she is.
 

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My doxie mix did this, it's a submissive/friendly gesture. The dog is trying to tell you it's harmless. Nothing to worry about.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for the input everyone! Good to know my smiling theory isn't completely unheard of.
 

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My Chi Heidi does this all the time! If she wants to play she will jump on your chest, growl at you and pull her lips right back into a snarl. Her body language is always relaxed and her tail wagging, its just something she has picked up!
She loves it if I growl and snarl back so we can have really 'viscious' playfights!!LOL:D
She will also 'smile' to say hello and pulls her lips back if she is unsure and nervous. Some dogs are just much more expressive then others.
 

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Our schnauzer mix did that. If you held a treat, and said "smile" he would pull his mouth up and show his teeth. He was smiling for the treat, but yours sounds like he is smiling because he is truly happy to see you. Welcome to CP.
 
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