Why Doesn’t My Dog Wag His Tail Anymore? 

By Coty Perry

As our dogs age and grow older with us, their behaviors change. They can go from barking at everything, running around like crazy, and being energetic all the time – to being slow and calm. 

This behavior doesn’t always have to seem like a negative or “bad” thing but if you notice your dog isn’t wagging their tail anymore or getting excited, it could mean something. 

It could be simply because they’re getting older and they don’t get as excited about things. But, it could also mean they’re in pain or feeling upset. 

It’s important to pay attention to their body language and respond accordingly.  

Why Your Dog Doesn’t Wag His Tail

There are many reasons your dog doesn’t wag their tail anymore. Let’s discuss some of them. 


The most common reason your dog isn’t wagging their tail anymore is simply because they’re aging. As dogs get older they become less excitable and even if they do wag their tail, it might not be with the same power and energy as it once was. 

Your dog’s tail may also droop and their back may arch a little more as they get older. This is normal and is a sign of age as well as arthritis and joint issues. 


As previously mentioned, arthritis and joint problems are common in dogs and your pup may be experiencing them in their lower back. They often arch their back to relieve the pain and this can lead to reduced wagging as it can aggravate the issues. 


If you left your dog alone for too long or did something to upset them, you may notice that they’re not wagging their tail or getting as excited when you give them attention. 

This could be something that happened out of nowhere or a behavioral issue you’ve encountered on multiple occasions. 

If their behavior doesn’t change after a few weeks, you’ll want to get them checked out by a vet. 


We all know that our dogs tend to tuck their tails and put their head down when they’re in trouble or if they’ve done something wrong. 

If you notice your pup isn’t wagging their tail when they normally would, perhaps they’ve done something and feel guilty about it because they know they’re going to get in trouble. 

When you’ve recently scolded your pup for something they’ve done wrong, they could also be intimidated by you and that may be why they’re not wagging their tail as much. 

Get Your Dog Wagging Again 

If you’ve ruled out any injury or pain you’ll want to try and get your pup excited again so they start wagging their tail. Keep in mind if you have a senior that they may never wag with the energy they used to and that’s perfectly normal. 

Make sure your pup is getting ample rest, exercise, attention, and love and you likely have nothing to worry about. If the unusual behavior persists for longer than a few weeks, consider getting them checked out by a vet. 

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Coty Perry
Coty is a self-proclaimed cat whisperer and animal lover. Growing up his mom ran a dog training business out of his childhood home so you can say it was complete chaos 24/7. Today, when he comes home after a long day of writing about animals, he’s greeted by his two loving cats Marley and Cozmo.