How do dogs apologize?

  • Date: September 26, 2022
  • Time to read: 3 min.

Dogs are incredibly loyal and loving animals, and when they do something wrong, it can be heartbreaking. But their apology doesn’t always come in the form of words, as canines are known to express their remorse in other ways. So what exactly does a dog’s apology look like? In this article, we’ll explore how dogs apologize and how you can tell if your pup is truly remorseful for their misdeeds.

What Is an Apology?

An apology is generally understood to be an expression of regret for something wrong done. It can also be a request for forgiveness or a promise to make amends. Apologies are a common way for humans to accept responsibility for a mistake, show remorse, and make reparations. But what about dogs? Do dogs apologize in the same way that we do?

Do Dogs Apologize?

The short answer is yes, dogs do apologize. However, it is important to note that dogs do not apologize in the same way that humans do. Dogs do not use language to communicate like humans do, so they cannot say “I’m sorry.” Instead, they use body language and other forms of nonverbal communication to convey their remorse.

How Do Dogs Apologize?

Dogs apologize through a combination of body language and vocalizations. They may bow their heads or tuck their tails between their legs to show submission. They may also lower or avert their gaze or lick their lips to show remorse. Dogs may also whimper, whine, or bark to express their regret.


One of the most common ways that dogs apologize is through yawning. This can be a sign of stress or discomfort and is often used as an appeasement gesture. Dogs may yawn when they feel threatened or when they are trying to defuse a tense situation.

Rolling Over

Another common way that dogs apologize is by rolling over onto their back. This is a submissive gesture that is often used when dogs are trying to show that they are not a threat. It is often accompanied by lip licking or other signs of submission.


Dogs may also apologize through sniffing. This is typically done when a dog is trying to show that they are not a threat and are willing to accept the other dog’s dominance.

Bringing Gifts

Dogs may also apologize by bringing gifts. This can be anything from a toy to a piece of food. It is a way of showing that they are sorry and want to make amends.


Dogs may not be able to say “I’m sorry” like humans do, but they do apologize in their own way. Through body language and vocalizations, dogs can express their regret and show that they understand when they have done something wrong. So the next time your pup apologizes, don’t forget to show them some love and understanding.

**Common Myths About Dog Apologies**

1. Dogs don’t apologize – This is false. Dogs apologize in their own unique way by displaying submissive behaviors such as lowering their head, avoiding eye contact, and sometimes even licking their owner.

2. Dogs can only apologize with their behavior – Not true. Dogs may also communicate their apology through physical touch, such as nudging their owner or leaning against them.

3. Dogs only apologize to their owners – This is false. Dogs may apologize to other animals and people as well.

4. Dogs don’t feel guilt – False. Dogs can feel guilt and may show signs of apology as a result.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do dogs apologize?

Answer: Dogs apologize by offering submissive behavior, such as rolling over, lowering their head, or tucking their tail between their legs. They may also lick your face or bring you a toy as a form of apology.

What are signs that a dog is sorry?

Answer: Signs that a dog is sorry include avoiding eye contact, tucking their tail between their legs, rolling over, and licking your face. They may also bring you a toy as a form of apology.


Dogs apologize in their own way, using body language and vocalizations to show remorse. Common signs of a canine apology include bowing the head, averting the gaze, licking the lips, yawning, rolling over, sniffing, and bringing gifts. These gestures are typically done to show submission and defuse a tense situation. Understanding these signs is key to showing love and understanding to your pup when they apologize.

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