Why do dogs howl? | Money

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Howling is one of several vocalizations that dogs use to communicate. It was passed down to them from their canine ancestors, although it serves different purposes today. If you are the owner of a howling dog, read on to find out why it happens and what you can do when it becomes excessive or when it seems to be an indication of an underlying problem.

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Where does the howling come from?

Howling in dogs is rooted in their ancestral lineage. Dogs, particularly those of some ancient breeds, are direct descendants of wolves. Wolves howl to communicate with other members of their pack and with other wolves over long distances, as well as to establish their territories and more.

Why is my dog ​​howling?

Wolf packs use, among other things, howling as a form of communication over long distances. However, a 2023 study on dogs’ reactions to howling found that unless your dog comes from an ancient breed – those that are genetically most closely related to wolves – howling no longer serves the same purposes. More modern dog breeds will most likely use howling for other things as a result of domestication. Some of the most common reasons why dogs howl include:

  • Responses to loud noises or high-pitched sounds
  • Seeking attention
  • Separation anxiety
  • Expressions of emotions (stress, excitement, sadness, fear, etc.)

Excessive howling

If your dog is constantly howling, he may be trying to communicate that something is wrong. Just as they can scream to express emotion or excitement, they can do so to convey pain or discomfort. Pet parents who are concerned that their dog may be howling due to medical problems should consult a veterinary surgeon (DVM).

If you have ruled out any medical problems and the howling persists, the problem may be behavioral. If so, you may need the help of a dog trainer or animal behaviorist who specializes in canine behavior.

Dog breeds that howl the most

Some domestic dog breeds are more likely to howl than others due to their close relationship to their wolf ancestors. These are called ancient breeds. Others do so following selective breeding, as in the case of bloodhounds or hunting dogs. Some of these breeds include:

  • Siberian huskies
  • Basenji
  • Chow Chow
  • American Eskimo Dogs
  • Beagles
  • Dachshunds
  • Basset Hound
  • Alaskan malamute
  • Hounds
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Frequently asked questions about why dogs howl

Why do dogs howl when you leave?

If your dog screams every time you leave the house, it could be a sign of separation anxiety, which can be resolved with professional help from a trainer or behaviorist.

Do dogs cry when they howl?

In some situations, such as when a dog is hurt or scared, a howl might be considered a form of crying.

Why do dogs howl at sirens?

Dog ears are very sensitive to sound. When they howl at the sound of sirens, they react by hearing a high-pitched sound.

Summary of the guide Why Dogs Howl by Money

  • Howling is a normal behavior of dogs that they inherited from their ancestors, the wolves.
  • Although it is a natural instinct, some dogs who howl may be trying to communicate an underlying problem to their owners.
  • Some dog breeds are more likely to howl and respond to howling than others.
  • When howling becomes a problem, pet owners can consult animal trainers or behavioral experts to find out why the behavior occurs and how to address it.
  • Dog owners can correct excessive howling through positive reinforcement training.

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