Putting the Tilt to the Test: Why do Dogs Head Tilt?

by | Jun 24, 2020 | Uncategorised | 2 comments

Update 10.08.2020: Data aquisition for this project is finished. Thanks to everybody for the interest in the research and potential participation. We will share the results on the projects page (see link below) as soon as possible.

Many of us recognise the cute face our dog’s sometimes pull, when they pitch their head to either the left or right. But why do they do it?

There are several theories out there, but no evidence to point in either direction. Is it that dogs tilt their heads so that they can see our facial expressions better? Is it so they can locate the source of a sound? Or do they want to convey something to us – maybe they are puzzled or want something, like attention, being let out or treats?

This project aims to make the function of the head tilt clearer to us, so that we can understand our dog’s perspective better or what they are trying to tell us.

Whether your dog head tilts on a regular basis or if they have never done it, your participation can help us. Maybe your dog does it for another reason than what has been suggested? We would want to know!

If you want to help out in this project, please feel free to complete our purpose-made questionnaire linked below. In order to participate you must be at least 18 years old and currently living with a dog. The questionnaire will only take 15-30 minutes and you can pause and come back to it if you continue on the same device.


For more info and an overview of other head tilt projects please see https://emometer.blogs.lincoln.ac.uk/about/current-projects/the-function-and-cause-of-head-tilts-in-dogs/