Do Dogs Cry?

What makes dogs sad?

Dogs feel sad for many of the same reasons we do, like pain, loneliness, loss, and grief, says Dr. Simon. While most doggy sadness is brief, sometimes they can experience very deep and long-lasting sadness.

How do dogs cry?

Dogs can cry in one of two ways: vocally, in a way that tugs at our heartstrings, and with tears. When it comes to those sad-sounding noises, your pooch is most likely trying to express excitement, frustration, anxiety, or pain.

How do dogs express sadness?

Dogs can cry like humans, but it doesn’t mean exactly the same thing as when we cry from our emotions. However, when it comes to communicating sadness, dogs have their own distinctive ways, Jones says.

Whimpering or whining.

This is one of the first ways that dogs learn to communicate, as puppies instinctually use this noise to “cry out” for their mother.

Shaking or trembling.

Some dogs will shake or tremble when they are upset, particularly as a response to being reprimanded or to something that scares them, Dr. Simon says.


Some dogs, especially those that are sensitive, may hide away in their “safe place,” like in a crate or under a bed, when they are sad, Dr. Simon says.

Asking for extra snuggles.

Many dogs will seek human comfort when they are sad; this is often the case if their sadness is related to pain, illness, loneliness, or boredom.

Ignoring you

Refusing to make eye contact with you, not listening to commands, turning his back to you, or going into another room are ways that less sensitive dogs may show they are sad or upset with you, Dr. Simon says.

Unique cues

Since humans and their pups often have a special bond, some behavior will be unique to them, Jones says. This means you are the one most likely to understand when your dog is sad, and why.