Dog owners everywhere have one question on their minds lately: “Why does my dog bark? Is he bored? Is he territorial?” You might think that your dog is just being a noisy nuisance, but there are many reasons why dogs bark. Barking can be used as a warning signal to other animals or even as an alarm system for you.
Regardless of the reason, it’s important to recognize and understand different types of barking your pup is barking about so you know how best to react in any given situation. That’s why we created this list of 17 things you should know about your dog barking!
1. Communicate with Other Dogs
Your dog is barking to communicate with other dogs. It might be a friendly greeting or a warning to back off! If you notice your dog is barking at the fence and another dog approaches, the dog will usually approach the fence and bark right back.
2. Show Dominance
Most dog owners know that their dog barks in an attempt to show dominance over them when they do something wrong. When you are scolding your dog for chewing on shoes or doing naughty things, he will see this as a threat from his leader (you).
Your dog will then respond by trying to assert his authority in any way possible – one of these ways being barking and body language! Although there’s no proven reason why dogs think it works, many people think that their dog is trying to “show” them that he’s boss.
3. Feeling Threatened
Dogs, just like people, will tend to bark when they feel threatened or scared by something around them. This could be something as simple as a change in environment: going for a walk into the woods (or even your own backyard) for the first time as opposed to walking through an urban street every day has everything to do with feeling threatened or not!
Other times it might be a loud noise that frightens your dog – which in turn causes him to bark and alert you of his fear… Or maybe there was another dog barking at him that put him on edge? It’s hard to say exactly what triggers dog barking but rest assured that there’s usually a reason why your dog barks!
4. Communicate with You
Barking can be used as a warning signal: dog owners everywhere have one question on their minds lately: “Why does my dog bark? Is he bored? Is he territorial?” You might think that your dog is just being a noisy nuisance, but there are many reasons why dogs bark.
Barking can be used as a warning signal to other animals or even as an alarm system for you. Regardless of the reason, it’s important to recognize and understand what your pup is barking about so you know how best to react in any given situation.
4. Be Happy!
Dogs actually use barks to communicate with each other and express joy or excitement. The way your dog’s tail and face move can help you identify the emotion behind his bark. A dog who is barking in joy will often wag their tail very quickly, while a dog who barks in fear or aggression usually tucks their tail between their legs and cowers.
5. Alert of Something or Someone
Their dog is barking at the sound, or maybe even the sight of big, furry dog walking by. Their dog loves to bark! To your dog it seems like everyone and everything may pose a threat so they feel they need to defend themselves against potential danger. This is called alarm barking, where your pup may try to warn you of something or someone threatening.
Chief is notorious for alerting us! Any sound, any movement, any threatening thought, he barks to let us know something might be up!
6. Display of Aggression
The dog dog instigate the fight, however dog owners are aware of dog aggression should be cautious when there is barking involved.
7. They Want Attention
Their dog is barking because they know how much you love to hear them bark or because they want to play with you. It could also be that their dog has separation anxiety and wants some extra attention from you before you leave for work. The dog may also be trying to tell you something – maybe your pet needs exercise, a walk outside, or perhaps they need some food! [ Reply ]
8. They Need To Get Out
Your dog’s dog cage is a safe place for them so why not let them stay there? If your dog doesn’t feel safe in an area or situation then they will have to dog dog dog dog dog dog dog dog dog dog cage and you must respect that.
9. They Have Separation Anxiety
If you crate your dog when you leave them home alone for long periods of time then they might start barking. This could be caused by a lack of exercise or attention from you and it is an okay way to get what they need while you are away.
10. They Are Bored
If your dog has nothing else better to do then why not just keep barking? A bored dog is a happy dog, amirite? Just make sure that the barking isn’t harmful or disruptive. If it’s just general boredom then play with them! Play fetch, go for a walk out in the forest preserve, or find another way to occupy their time.
Your hobby can also help – if painting relaxes you then let your pup paint with you too! The dog will have fun and so will you.
11. They Are Hungry
Yeah, this one can be a little bit difficult to hear but dog owners know just how much their dog’s bark signals hunger. Your dog wants something in his stomach and your dog won’t stop barking until you fill him up! You may have to invest in some dog food to make sure that your dog has what he needs though – it might be a good idea for parents with small children who don’t necessarily understand the importance of dog feeding time.
12. They Are Nervous or Scared
A nervous dog can be considered dangerous because they are more likely to bite or scratch at anyone they feel threatened by. Make sure that your dog isn’t nervous. If you aren’t sure, just take a look and see if the dog is panting or drooling excessively, acting aggressively to your family members, or even growling at another dog during playtime.
13. Storms and Loud Noises are Scaring you Pup
If you dog is barking excessively when there are storms, you should be aware of the possibility that your dog is scared by the loud noises. When a dog barks out of fear, it will bark more frequently and loudly as well. Because most dog owners don’t know why they dog is barking during storms or loud noises, many dogs end up being abandoned or neglected because their owners do not understand their behavior.
If your dog has been barking excessively during noise-related events or storms and it’s been going on for awhile, take him to the vet to make sure there isn’t something medically wrong with him. The vet can help determine if he’s in pain from any long term conditions like arthritis or maybe even give him some medication to help ease the pain.
14. The Dog’s Breed
Your dog’s breed may also be a factor as to why they bark so much. Big dog breeds and dog breeds with high energy levels are more likely to bark because they need to expend some of their extra energy. These dog breeds include: German Shepherds, Beagles, Boxers.
15. Saying Hello!
Your dog might bark as a way to say hello! Dogs are social creatures so chances are they like to meet and greet new people, dog and otherwise. If your dog barks when your door opens and guests come over, make sure you’re dog doesn’t get aggressive with them because that’s not a good way to welcome someone.
16. Wants to Go Outside
Your dog may want or need to go outside to use the bathroom or expend some energy. When your dog barks constantly in the morning or evening, chances are they’re just trying to tell you something, like they need to go outside.
17. No Reason At All!
Finally, dog barking can just be a dog thing. You might think your dog is trying to tell you something specific like their food dish is empty when really they’re not. Dogs are animals with limited communication skills so it’s best to realize that dog barking can simply mean nothing at all in some situations.
Tips to Limit Your Dogs Barking
- Listen to your dog and understand what he/she is asking
- You should never punish your dog for barking – this will only make the behavior worse
- Setting schedules to set expectations
- Distraction with toys/treats
- Dog barking is instinctual and not usually something you can completely train your dog out of
Dogs are full of personality and aren’t always predictable. If you want to know more about your dog’s barking habits, we’ve compiled this list for you! This post covers 17 reasons why dogs bark – from territorial behavior to boredom or even as a warning signal. We hope it helps answer some questions about what your pup is trying to tell you through his vocalizations (or lack thereof).
Remember that there may be many different factors at play in any given situation so if you’re not sure how best to react with your pup, consult an animal trainer near you for the personalized advice they can provide.