Have you ever looked at the expression on your dog’s face and said, I love you, puppeh, but what the heck are you making that face for?

Canine facial expressions can be hard to read, so the DARling asked some of the dogs at Dharamsala Animal Rescue to explain what they are trying to tell us with some of their looks.

Ruby: I am first lady, queen, empress, Beyoncé, all the Kardashians, Harry Styles, and America’s next top model. Fight me!

Lumi: I’s willing to share if you are. Trade you one milk biscuits for one plays wif da clown-elf.

Larry: (sings) It’s all alright… yeah it’s all alright… I got nothing left inside of my chest but it’s all alright… It’s a conspiracy, people. Government gonna get in ya braaaiiin. Come get your tin hats here, folks.

Casper: No, seriously, look―I do a great Charles Dance impersonation! Don’t tell me this doesn’t look just like Tywin Lannister! No man is free. Only children and fools think elsewise. Yeah? Yeah? Nailed it! Another one? No? Okay.

Bruce: Your witticisms bore me ad nauseam. I have nothing to contribute to this conversation. Please do not try to coerce me into participating. You will fail.

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Asha: I’m cute! I’m cute! Adopt me! I’m cute! Also… I chewed the face off your great aunt’s antique doll.

Johnny: See? I’m not smiling with my eyes; it’s all tongue, no eyes. You gotta pay attention to how people smile. It’s in the eyes that a smile becomes genuine. Otherwise, it’s just tongue service. How do I know? I’m a hundred and seven-years-old. How old are you?

Shamboo: I have never seen anything so deeply concerning, and I hope I never have to again.

Tina: I swear, paw on the Bible, I am innocent of all these crimes of which you accuse me. I don’t even know what cheese is, and I certainly never stole it from the bench when you weren’t looking, and I definitely didn’t take it outside and eat it. You have me confused with another cheese thief. I find that cat over there has a highly suspicious, guilty sort of look.

Fizzgig: Grrrrrr! Grrrrrr! Goddamn it, I said Grrrrrr!


Shazad: I know you said it was safe, but basically I don’t trust you cos you tricked me last month by telling me that we were going to the beach and actually you took me to the vet and I had to have needles. And I should have known better, cos the beach is three states away, but you betrayed me! So I am just gonna stay here, where I feel safe, okay?

Amber: It’s a cruel and beautiful world, kid. Trust me, I been out there in it. The haters are gonna hate you, and the lovers are gonna ignore you. All you can do is the big puppy eyes look. Gets ’em every time.

Suraj: You think you’re cool, kid? You think you’re cool? This is cool. Look at me. This is cool. Btw, I stole your flower hair clip, but the rest of this get up is mine. Genuine Suraj is Cool (SiC) sunglasses and stole, available for a limited from my online store. Get ’em while they’re hot. Oh, wait, they’re SiC―they’ll always be hot. Burn you like da suuunnnn! Damn, I’m cool!

Words: Sharnon Mentor-King

Images: Pesky Pluto, Dharamsala Animal Rescue

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About the author

Sharnon Mentor-King

Sharnon Mentor-King

Sharnon Mentor-King is a freelance writer and editor from New Zealand, currently living and writing in Dharamsala in northern India. When she is not interpreting dogs’ facial expressions you can find her writing bad poetry and excellent young adult fantasy. She has been working on her first novel, A Way to Return, for nearly half her life, and if she ever finishes it, it will be a miracle. Let us pray.