Let’s Be a Doggie Detective: Eyes

Click on the eyes and gather clues to become a Doggie Detective!


Eyes are bright, gaze is direct but soft. Minimal muscle tension around the eyes.

When you consider the eyes along with the alert ears, loose facial muscles, and open/relaxed mouth, you can see this dog is happy and engaged.

Whale eye (white of the eye visible on one side), muscle tension around the eyes, and raised eyebrow area.

Consider this dog’s eyes alongside the ears (pulled to the side, muscle tension at the base), tense tail, closed mouth, and muscle tension throughout the face. Also note the muscle tension throughout the body, the hind legs ready for movement, the ball (resource) close by, and the fact that the dog is between the coffee table and couch, which is difficult to escape. This is a common growl zone and this dog is displaying significant discomfort.

The eyes are focused with slight muscle tension around the eye as indicated by the raised eyebrow area. The pupils are somewhat dilated.

When you consider this dog’s eyes along with the very slightly raised ears (neutral/slightly forward), and wide open mouth with the extended tongue (mid-pant, commissure back and open), this dog is in a state of moderate arousal or excitement.

The eyes are tense and focused. Significant muscle tension around the eyes. This eye may be described as “hard”.

When you consider this dog’s eyes in addition to the ears (dropped low if you look closely at the ear base), tightly closed mouth, commissure forward, and overall muscle tension, this dog is highly wary and intense.

Hard eye, focused/direct stare. Eyebrow area is raised. Muscle tension throughout.

In addition to the hard eyes, this dog’s ears are forward and up, the tail is elevated and the hair at the tail base is raised (piloerected). In addition, the commissure of the mouth is forward, the muscles are tight around the face and body. Also note the tension in his legs and front paws, with the toes gripping and a wide stance. This dog is NOT looking to engage and is warning you to not approach.

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