Why Do Dogs Bark?

dog-barking-through-fence

Have you ever wondered why your dog barks at other dogs, whines for some of your food during dinner, and howls late at night? Dogs use noise to communicate like humans do, but instead of using language like we do, they bark, growl, whine, and howl.

Of course, there are a dozen different reasons to why dogs bark. One thing that you must pay mind to is that some dogs may naturally bark more than other dogs—a chihuahua will be much more talkative than a bulldog.

Now let’s talk about why your dog barks, and what they may be trying to say to you. Each situation may produce a different bark with a different meaning.

Dogs often bark in response to their environment. May it be a bushy-tailed squirrel while on a walk, or the mailman delivering a package to your front porch. Your dog may also let you know of possible threats, such as another animal or a potential thief. Your dog will let you know if they feel threatened through growls.


Dogs Playing
Talking to Other Dogs

Dogs are social creatures. Often times they bark to be able to communicate with their humans or other dogs. This will often be seen while on walks or at dog parks. Giving dogs a chance to socialize with each other will be very beneficial for them.

Several of the most vocal dog breeds include:

  • Bloodhound
  • Yorkshire Terrier
  • German Shepherd
  • Basset Hound
  • Miniature Schnauzer
  • American English Coonhound
  • Siberian Husky
  • Alaskan Malamute
  • Chihuahua
  • Pomeranian
  • Miniature Pinscher
  • Beagle

Expressing Emotion

Dogs often express emotion, just like humans.

They may let you know that they want some quality time with you by whining or barking. You may see this often when you’re eating and your dog wants a little bit of your food.

Another example of expression is when they get playful and excited. They may start jumping around and start barking a lot, letting you know that they are ready to play and are excited!


Dogs will bark to let you know of their physical needs—may it be thirst, hunger, being cold, or needing to use the restroom. This is your dog’s way of letting you know that they need some physical help—often times something they cannot fully do themselves.

Though it may not always be apparent at first, dogs almost always have a reason to bark, and they have a message to tell.

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