Puppy Dog Barking: Why do dogs bark?

Many dog owners want their dogs to bark only when there is danger present. When someone is trying to break into your home, it is good to have a dog around. Not only may he scare off the intruder, your dog’s loud bark will alarm you that you should be on guard because something is wrong. However, dogs, unlike their owners, don’t consider barking to be a tool that should be used only under certain circumstances. Rather, dogs bark in order to get a message across to their owners. A dog’s bark is much like your voice: he uses it to communicate something to those people that he cares about. Unfortunately, it is hard to understand dogs, as they don’t speak our language. So, in order to comprehend why a dog is barking, we must take the context, our dog’s body language, and the circumstances that led to the vocalization into consideration.

So, how come dogs bark?

There are many different reasons why dogs bark. Many times, barking behavior varies among different breeds. Some dogs were bred to bark only under certain circumstances: when they consider a person or situation to be threatening. Specifically, this characterizes the guarding breeds, such as Rottweilers, Dobermans, and German Shepherds. Other dogs were bred to use barking as a tool to help their owners locate or pursue an object. For example, sporting breeds (Beagles and Bloodhounds) are used during hunting expeditions because they know that they need to howl in order to alert the hunter that the prey is nearby. Then, there are just some dogs that have turned barking into a hobby and enjoy to hear themselves yap. This is common among the various toy breeds.

Now, although dog barking is largely dependent upon the breed, there are certain circumstances under which any dog will bark, regardless of its breed. They are as follows:

  1. Your dog is feeling bored or lonesome.
  2. He is hungry, or is aware that it is mealtime.
  3. Something is astray, there is somebody lurking near or around the home.
  4. He wants you to play with him.
  5. He catches sight of another animal.
  6. He needs to relieve himself.

Now, if you know that your dog is barking because of any of the above reasons, it would be impractical for you to try to stop him. Remember, it is normal for all canines to bark during certain times and situations. I’m sure that you were aware of this when you took your four legged friend home. Otherwise, if you wanted complete silence from your pet, I’d assume that you would have adopted a goldfish instead.

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