8 Sweet Signs Your Dog Is Happy And Feels Safe With You

A reminder that your fur baby appreciates all your love.

Woman holding her dog and smiling New Africa / Shutterstock

New toys, comfy beds, frequent trips to the dog park, and sacrificing a paycheck for vet bills are typical of pet ownership. We’d do anything to ensure our dogs are happy. It’s all pet owners really want in life — to give our fur babies a happy, safe, and most importantly, long life — but how can we know what they’re thinking?

There are signs that our pups are happy and feeling safe, you just have to know what to look for.


Here are 8 sweet signs your dog is happy and feels safe with you. 



1. They show their belly around you. 

Some owners might jokingly argue their dogs are a little bit too comfortable with them, spending more time on their back than on four legs. That’s what we love about our dogs, after all!  They always look cute, sleepy, and perfect when they’re lying down.




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Truthfully, the tendency for dogs to lay down and expose their bellies is an indicator of their behavior. Studies have shown that dogs who flop on their backs convey a sense of security in their environment and share love with the people around them. 

2. They follow you around.

The next time you get angry tripping over your shadow or having to converse with your dog in the bathroom, remember that dogs often follow their owners around to express companionship.


In addition to enjoying your company, pets tend to follow their owner for a variety of other reasons. While it’s likely they trust and love you, you’re also your dog’s primary caregiver. They know that you’re filling up their dog food, suiting them up for walks, and putting them in the bath.

3. Your dog is always sleepy. 

While seeing your dog cuddled up and sleeping during the day is cute (and usually convenient), sometimes it can feel concerning to see them with little energy. Dog experts are quick to calm those nerves. Dogs sleep more often when they’re in a comfortable and safe environment. 



In addition, dogs’ biological nature can be to blame for their sleep habits. Experts say that they tend to fall into “REM” sleep quicker and more frequently than humans. This means they’re quick to enter their dream state and require more hours of shut-eye than their owners do to maintain their normal energy levels. 


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4. They play softly and gently with you and other dogs. 

Dogs who initiate play are often happy. Whether it be with their owner or other dogs, dogs show compassion by giving each other turns, being relatively gentle with their toys, and showing empathy when the other person/dog indicates anger or is hurt. 

A dog trainer on TikTok named Phoebe shared her tips for spotting healthy play behavior between animals and knowing when to intervene when your dog is no longer feeling safe, happy, or protected. 



5. Your dog’s gaze is soft, they blink often and seem calm. 

Studies have shown that eye contact between dogs and their owners plays a significant role in the connection the pair share.  




If you have a pet, you know that soft gaze well. It's a loving gaze that makes you melt. It’s exactly this soft and comfortable gaze that our pets adopt when they feel comfortable with us, using their expression as a way to share love.

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6. They want to cuddle with you and initiate contact often. 

While this might seem like a no-brainer, it’s worth mentioning that our dogs’ cuddles are a sign of love. Dogs are often simple with their expressions of love. If they enjoy your company, they’ll want to be close to you. 


Cuddling with your dog results in a mutual exchange of oxytocin, a natural hormone that causes a surge of positive emotions and energy. 

Not only is your dog expressing love when they cuddle up next to us, but they’re also boosting your own positive emotions. While it’s a great perk to having dogs in your home, this boosting of “happy hormones” is another reason why pets become emotional support or service animals. 

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7. Your dog gets 'The Zoomies' to burn off happy energy. 

“The Zoomies,” otherwise known as Frenetic Random Activity Periods, are boosts of high-energy activity in dogs often in response to overwhelming excitement. While occasional spurts of energy are typical for dogs, ensuring they get daily exercise and mental enrichment can ensure that they’re not happening at every moment of excitement. 



When your dog is happy or excited to see you after a long day at work they’re likely to have “The Zoomies” and run around the house at breakneck speeds. 


8. They are typically well-behaved.

While most of our pets have their naughty moments, a well-behaved dog is a happy dog. Dogs prone to chewing or destroying things at home are likely to be bored, anxious, or depressed. Giving them more attention, making their space more relaxing, and giving them other avenues to burn off energy is important. 

For our sweet fur babies, oftentimes they don’t require much in exchange for unconditional love and loyalty. They deserve just as much love in return. Spoil them because they deserve it and remember that their behavior is almost always a reflection of our care. 

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Zayda Slabbekoorn is a news and entertainment writer at YourTango focusing on pop culture analysis and human interest stories.