Why Does A Dog Howl?

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Even the most well-natured dog occasionally lets out a piercing howl. It’s an often misunderstood form of communication. A lot of dog owners can more easily understand their dog's body language than the complexities of their verbal expression. Despite it being such a common occurrence, many people still wonder why do dogs howl?

Primarily, a dog is howling to communicate. It doesn’t make much sense to people, but a dog is attempting to tell you something. Like a conversation between two people speaking different languages though, it is difficult to make much sense. Each howl that a dog does can be interrupted based on their sound, type, and the context of the situation. If you want to curb excessive howling, you first need to understand why dogs howl at all.


What are The Different Types of Howl?

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Not every noise is a full-on loud bark. If you’re wondering why dogs howl, you need to learn to differentiate between types of howl. The variations aren’t just an invention of  dog memes. Each type of howl has a different purpose and is identifiable by certain traits.

Howl

An actual howl is a sustained noise. It is longer than a single bark and can vary in tone. Some dogs might do it in a low voice, others might go high. A howl is typically distinguished by the length of the noise.

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Bark

This is the typical dog shout. It is short and often a lower noise than a howl. Rather than becoming one long noise, a bark will be repeated over and over.

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Bay

This is a particularly unique type of howl that not every dog even uses. It is most often used by hunting dogs to signify that they’ve found something, but other dogs in domesticate situations use it in similar, less bloodthirsty, ways. This is usually deep and drags on for a while. It is a sustained low growl.

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