Patricia McConnell, PhD, CAAB

I See What You’re Saying: Translating Conflict-related Visual Signals

A picture is worth a thousand words, and dogs “paint” pictures for us all the time through their movements and expressions. This interactive presentation will focus on video and audio recordings that can fine-tune our ability to evaluate what we are seeing and hearing. We’ll watch and listen as dogs interact with one another in situations related to conflict or agonistic behavior. No matter how skilled we are at “reading” dogs, we all can improve our ability to translate from dog to human. We can also take this opportunity to question our beliefs and assumptions about what specific actions actually mean—how much of them are based on good, solid science, and how much is based on a good guess? We’ll talk about this and more, while watching and listening to dogs communicating in their native language, while we “second language learners” try to keep up.

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