How do I know if my Maltese is happy?

  • Date: February 1, 2023
  • Time to read: 4 min.

A happy, healthy Maltese is a joy to own and care for. But how can you tell if your Maltese is really happy? Well, there are some telltale signs that you can look for that will give you a good indication of your pup’s wellbeing. By observing your Maltese’s behavior, you can determine whether or not your pup is content and comfortable with his or her environment. With a few simple tips and tricks, you can be sure that your Maltese is always feeling their best.

Maltese Expressions and Behaviors

Caring for a Maltese is a joy that many pet owners treasure. But it’s important to understand how to read the signs of your Maltese’s emotional state to ensure that they are happy. Although all Maltese are different, there are some telltale signs that indicate when they are content.

Tail Wagging

One of the most obvious signs of a content Maltese is a wagging tail. When a Maltese is feeling happy, their tail will wag from side to side. This is an instinctive response that has been passed down through generations of dogs. A wagging tail is an outward sign that your Maltese is feeling content and secure in their environment.

Active Playtime

Maltese love to play and can become quite energetic when they are feeling happy. This could involve chasing after a toy, running around the backyard, or simply playing with their owners. If your Maltese is actively engaged in playtime, it’s a sign that they are feeling content and happy.

Smiling and Panting

Another sign of a content Maltese is a smile on their face. This can be difficult to detect, but a sure sign of a happy Maltese is a slight upturn of their lips. This is usually accompanied by panting, which is a sign of joy. If your Maltese is smiling and panting, it’s a sure sign that they are feeling content.

Relaxed Posture

When a Maltese is feeling happy, their body language will also reflect this. One of the most obvious signs is a relaxed posture. This could include lying down on their back, resting their head on their owners’ lap, or simply curling up in a ball. If your Maltese is in a relaxed position, it’s a sign that they are feeling content and at ease.

Cuddles and Affection

Maltese love to show their affection to their owners. This could be anything from cuddling up on the couch, to giving their owners a big hug. If your Maltese is seeking out cuddles and affection, it’s a sure sign that they are happy and content with their surroundings.


Maltese are known for their vocalizations, and these can be a good indication of their emotional state. When happy, Maltese may make a soft, high-pitched whine or a low, guttural moan. These sounds are usually accompanied by a relaxed posture and a wagging tail.

Healthy Appetite

A healthy appetite is another sign that your Maltese is feeling content. If your Maltese is eating their meals with enthusiasm and seeming to enjoy their food, it’s a sign that they are in a good emotional state.


Knowing how to read the signs of a content Maltese is a key part of being a responsible pet owner. By paying attention to your Maltese’s expressions and behaviors, you can ensure that they are feeling happy and content. If you notice any changes in your Maltese’s behavior, it’s important to contact your veterinarian as soon as possible.

## Common Myths About Knowing if Your Maltese is Happy

1. Myth: A wagging tail always means a happy dog.

Fact: While a wagging tail usually indicates a happy dog, there are other emotions that can cause a dog to wag its tail. A dog may also wag its tail when it is feeling anxious or scared.

2. Myth: Dogs always smile when they are happy.

Fact: Dogs do not actually smile because they do not have the facial muscles to make a true smile. A dog’s mouth may appear to be smiling when they are relaxed and content, but this is not an indication of happiness.

3. Myth: If a Maltese is vocal, it means it is unhappy.

Fact: Maltese dogs are known for being vocal, but this does not necessarily mean that your dog is unhappy. Vocalization can be a sign of excitement, fear, or even hunger. Paying attention to other signs of your Maltese’s mood, such as body language and activity level, is the best way to know if your Maltese is truly happy.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know if my Maltese is happy?

Answer: You can tell if your Maltese is happy by looking for signs of contentment such as wagging its tail, playing with toys, and seeking interaction with you. Your Maltese should also be relaxed and have a good appetite. If your Maltese is exhibiting any of these signs, it is likely that it is happy.

What should I do if my Maltese experiences separation anxiety?

Answer: Separation anxiety can be a difficult experience for both you and your Maltese. To help reduce the anxiety, you should provide your Maltese with comforting items such as a favorite toy, blanket, or treat. Additionally, you should make sure that your Maltese has plenty of exercise and interaction with you when you are home. Finally, you can try teaching your Maltese commands to help distract it from the anxiety.



Maltese are known for their expressive behaviors and signs that indicate when they are content. These include tail wagging, active playtime, relaxed posture, cuddles and affection, vocalizations and a healthy appetite. Knowing how to read these signs is important for pet owners to ensure their Maltese is happy and content. Any changes in behavior should be investigated by a vet.

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