Yes, dogs can wink. As a matter of fact, they have been doing this more frequently than you may believe. Why do dogs wink? Well, there is not just one answer, and we will have to investigate and explain a few main options. Keep in mind that your dog may do this for a completely different, mysterious reason.
Wink: What Is It?
Why do dogs wink is a frequently asked question. But to understand the answer, you need to know what a wink is. Yes, most of you know, but let’s define the action. This is a state in which one eye is completely open while the other is closed for a short period of time. This means a lot among humans, and it has been present for millennia. But, in different cultures and different parts of the globe, winking has a completely different meaning.
Dogs wink in order to communicate with you or due to something else, as you shall see below. Anyway, it is an interesting action, and most dog owners just love it.
Reasons Why Do Dogs Will Wink
As you may know already, there are a few reasons why dogs wink. These are harmless and they may be caused by your dog wanting to communicate with you or he has a problem. Let’s explain all of the reasons and help you understand why your pet does this.
1. Shows His Submission
If your pet is submissive, which is most likely because you are the alpha, he will look down at you.But first, he will wink, and then he will move his gaze away from you. He may look at you in a “stealthy” way so you don’t see this.
The actual wink here is used to show submission. Maybe it sounds weird and contradictory, but dogs do not use facial expressions in the same way as we do. Looking at the eyes is the best example.In humans, it is a sign of respect and an engaging expression. In dogs, this is a sign of aggression and dominance. Dogs who do this are likely going to have a fight.
Keep in mind that in order to have a proper relationship with your dog, you must be the alpha and he must be the beta. This is mandatory. Only then will your pet obey you, and you will have a wonderful dog. If he believes that the situation is the other way around, he won’t obey you. Your pet will believe that you must obey him.
M2. He Is In Pain
Yes, your dog may wink due to pain. In most cases, he will do this when a hair or piece of dust is inside the eye and he wants to remove it. He may also do this when a chemical comes into contact with the eye, such as bleach. If this is the case, you will see your pet rubbing the affected eye all the time and closing it for as long as he can.
There is a condition known as entropion. This happens when the short hair on the eyelid is touching the eye and scratching it. The eyelid itself is affected and it moved inwards. This is a condition where your dog needs help from a vet. If a dog winks all the time for a long period of time, he needs help.
3. He Mimics You
Here is another interesting reason why some dogs wink at you occasionally. He mimics your behavior. If you have been winking at him all the time in the past, now he will do the same.
Dogs have been experts when it comes to mimicking. They only mimic their owners. You can see certain dogs eating when you do the same, or even sleeping when you sleep. They will wink at you for the same reason, even if you don’t do it at the moment. Usually, smaller breeds will do this.
4. He Needs Attention
If your pet winks at you occasionally and you know that he is very smart, this is the explanation. He will wink at you so he can get your attention. He may do this rarely or all the time. In a nutshell, he knows that doing certain things can help him get quality time with you. Basically, you will be thrilled, and you will start playing with him. Winking is probably one of the best and simplest ways for your dog to get that attention.
Some dogs have learned that this behaviour will get them a prize. They will wink and do all kinds of things just so they can get treats all the time. It is certainly an appealing behaviour and reveals the intelligence of your dog.
What You Should Do If Your Pet Winks All The Time?
You may have a dog who winks at you all the time. He will do this almost every single hour, and he may rub his eye, cover it, or do something else. He may be depressed or just sad as well.
The first thing you should do is inspect the eye and make sure there is nothing inside it. If there is, remove it. If you notice redness and weeping are present as well, contact your vet as soon as you can. These may be symptoms of some health-related issues that have affected the eye, and professional help is needed. In most cases, it is perfectly harmless, and it may be a small injury that will be sorted out within a few hours. But, in some other cases, it may be a painful condition that will require proper treatment.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Why does my dog wink at me?
Dogs may wink as a form of communication, playful gesture, or sometimes due to an eye irritant. They might also mirror human behavior or show submission.
Is winking a sign of a medical issue in dogs?
While occasional winking is generally harmless, consistent winking or signs of discomfort might indicate an eye irritant or a medical condition. Always consult with a vet in such cases.
How should I respond when my dog winks at me playfully?
Engage in a fun activity or play with them. Dogs often appreciate the attention and interaction.
My dog winks frequently. Should I be concerned?
Frequent winking can be due to eye irritation, dry eyes, or other medical conditions. It’s recommended to consult a veterinarian if the behavior persists.
Can dogs wink to mirror human behavior?
Yes, some dogs might wink to mimic or mirror their owners, especially if they’ve seen them do it frequently.
What does it mean when a dog winks with one eye versus both eyes?
A single-eye wink can be a playful gesture, communication, or due to an irritant in that specific eye. Blinking both eyes might be a natural reflex or a broader form of communication.
Is winking a sign of submission in dogs?
In some cases, dogs might wink to display submission or as a gesture to de-escalate a situation.
Can I train my dog to wink on command?
Absolutely! With positive reinforcement and consistent training, you can teach your dog to wink on command.
How can I check my dog’s eye if I suspect an irritant?
Gently pull back the eyelids and inspect for any foreign objects, redness, or swelling. If you’re unsure, or if removing the irritant seems challenging, seek veterinary assistance.
Why does my dog wink when I talk to him?
Dogs are very attuned to human behavior. If your dog winks when you talk, it might be a form of interaction, mirroring, or simply a playful gesture.
The Final Word
Why do dogs wink occasionally? Are they in pain? The bottom line is that they use this as a facial expression, which it is. They are smart and they like impressing their owners. In rare cases winking may be caused by a health issue or an injury and you will need to take him to the vet. Luckily this happens rarely.