This is a subsidiary question to Shapeshifters - Shared language between human and animal forms There is some of background information in that question, but none of it is critical for this question.
See also Phonetic overlap between humans and wolves for the vocal version of this question.
Body language is an alternative to form of communication to vocalization, and is widely used by many animal species, including humans.
Consider a group of shapeshifters capable of transforming between a human form and a wolf form of equal intelligence.
Some forms of body language transfer reasonably well across these forms:
- Eye movement / eye pointing
- Facial expressions
Due to differences in body structure, other body language does not transfer quite as well:
- For humans: Arm movements and gestures
- For wolves: Ear and tail posture
Are there any obvious overlaps in compatible (or incompatible) body language that I have missed here?
- Are there any practical (e.g. viable not just when standing still in a controlled environment, but also while running through a forest) ways to map between these incompatible body languages? Primitive example: arm inclination directly maps to tail inclination; hand inclination directly maps to ear inclination. This is obviously a bit inconvenient.
- Human facial expressions can communicate a widely nuanced array of emotions. Is there any reputable evidence that wolf expressions can cover a similar range?