Woof Woof, Why Are They Barking?!

Listen to their barks, that's their only way of communicating with you!

Having a good relationship isn’t fortuitous. It doesn’t blossom if one is uninitiated to understand the other. If it has taken a whole lot of effort for dogs who don’t speak our language to understand our temperament and every movement, what is being done on our part to understand their every bark, growl and whine?

From my toilet papers runs to the mundane walking to the bathroom, my  brownie at home was always barking. Instead of finding out what he was yapping about, I did what we all conveniently do – to just turn around and walk away.

I know, how rude.

Nevertheless, it was not till much later when I managed to decipher why Donut (my pup) was being so clingy – Remember Hachiko? Yes, the feels.

IMG_6030

This is us, cuddling up every night before we hit the hay. Envious much?

Understanding your pooches isn’t difficult; there are only 3 simple dimensions to a dog’s bark you’d need to listen very carefully…

Intonation (Pitch)

Now this is usually a big give away. You’d be able to tell immediately, if your pooches are happy or not.

I used to have this bad habit of snatching my dog’s treats away when I felt he had a tad too much; Despite his deep long growls – a warning telling me that he was not happy and that I should stop – I chose to ignore it. After all, how much harm could a squeezable toy poodle do to me?

Naturally, I continued doing the same even when his growls became persistently longer and deeper. Somehow, I didn’t think it matter and cast it aside. Until one fateful night, my dog couldn’t take it anymore, lunged forward and bit me on my right hand. Oh boy, did he draw blood. But I finally understood one thing, that dogs too have their thresholds, and thus repeated ignoring of their barks is probably not the best idea.

Always pay attention to yipping as well. When dogs yap in short sharp pitches, your pooches are telling you they’re loving whatever you are doing, so don’t stop!

Duration

pugatory dog fail scary fall

There are 2 things you need to know regarding the length of your dogs’ growl/yips:-

  1. The longer the growls, the more your dogs view a certain thing as a threat
  2. Yips, on the other hand, can indicate either joy, insecurity, fear or being unsure. This happens to my dog whenever he hears noises outside the house giving short deep short barks, probably to scare any unwanted guests. Imagine that, my 16-month old toy poodle, a guard dog!

Frequency (repetition)

pugatory dog scary season 1 puppy 

Similarly, there are 2 things to take note of:-

  1. My dog tends to barks impersistently to noises outside my house. These are harmless, and often because he was roused by a loud sound or something that interrupted his afternoon nap!
  2. On the contrary, his barks would’ve evolved into something a tad more persistent high pitched and baby-like if he were excited!

 

So guys, there is no more excuses to say that you don’t know what your dogs are barking about. Put in a little effort to understand them more and be the person they want to show their love and longing to!

Updated: August 28, 2017.

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