Does anyone know why a dog raises his hackles...other than when he/she is mad? The past few days when I've been walking Remi in our neighborhood the hair on the back of his neck stands straight up. He doesn't make any other sounds or gestures such as growling or barking or backing away. He just trots along, sniffing everything under the sun with his hackles clearly standing tall. It's just such an odd thing to see, wondering if anyone had ever seen this, dealt with it, etc.? Should I be concerned or do something about it? It doesn't seem to be a problem right now, but at this point he's only a 20 pound puppy and easily redirected.
Dogs raise their hackles for a variety of reasons. When they are excited, during play, when they are anxious, nervous, faced with confrontation -- you name it. With a pup, I would just put it down to the pup having a heightend sense of awareness. You don't say how old he is, but if he has only been out for walking in the past couple of weeks, it is still very much a new experience for him. Excitement combinded with a bit of uneasiness could certainly be what is causing him to raise his hackles. Nothing to worry about.
he just sees dead people :surprise:
ghosts cause raised hackles
“I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.” H. Keller
DittoDogs raise their hackles for a variety of reasons. When they are excited, during play, when they are anxious, nervous, faced with confrontation -- you name it. .... if he has only been out for walking in the past couple of weeks, it is still very much a new experience for him. .... Nothing to worry about
Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]
Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
alfie does it when he meets other dogs, never had any aggression so im taking it as excitement
Dexter has always raised his hackles from an early age in puppy school and pre-school. We likend him to a hyena. He is nine months now and only does it occasionally. I must admit when he was doing it as a young pup we were worried he was showing aggression (of course that was not the case). It seems the more dogs he has met/played with over time, the less he has been raising his hackles. We wondered whether maybe a lot of it has to do with confidence and early fears.
You can't just go by one thing. Notice what he is doing with his tail, his ears, his posture. Does he do a play bow during this time? What is he doing with his mouth and eyes? A combination of all of these things will give you a clearer picture of his intent.
Ditto #2Originally Posted by Bob Pr.
Mick used to raise his hackles when he was scared or anxious. Caleb's go up whenever he's overly stimulated in a happy way (like when the mailman comes or he's playing with another dog).