Being a dog owner always provides its fair share of challenges and lessons. You will become a more responsible person and learn how to communicate with another species during your time spent with your dog. However, in order to be a great dog owner, you will need to learn to speak their language. This is easier said than done since dogs can only communicate with body language and by barking. That’s why it’s important to understand why your dog is barking so that you can keep your pup happy and healthy. Below, we will be walking you through some of the main reasons why dogs bark so that you will be able to communicate better with your four-legged friend.
1. Your Dog is Alarmed
One of the biggest reasons why dogs bark is because they are alarmed about something. You’ve probably already witnessed this type of barking after the doorbell rings or your dog hears a noise outside. These types of noises catch your dog off-guard, so they start barking to express their confusion. One of the keys with this type of barking is to not yell at your dog or increase the volume levels. Adding more loud noise into the equation will make your dog even more alarmed and have the opposite effect of what you likely want to occur. A good way to stop your dog from barking if they are alarmed is to distract them by taking them outside or playing with them.
2. Your Dog Wants Something
Dogs use barking to express a lot of different things. The key to understanding why your dog is barking is to think about the context of their bark. For example, if your dog is barking with a single bark or a few barks in quick succession, they are probably telling you that they want something. This could mean that they want food or to be taken outside for a walk because they need to use the restroom. They also might be barking simply because they want some attention. Keep in mind that if you respond to their barking, it is reinforcing their idea that barking gets results. If you want barking to stop or decrease, you should ignore your dog’s barking. That doesn’t mean you can’t give them food or take them outside after they bark, you should just wait a little bit to avoid positive reinforcement of their barking behavior.
3. Your Dog is Excited About Something
Another common reason that dogs bark is because they are genuinely excited about something. One of the important things to understand why your dog is barking is that dogs are easy to excite. For example, your dog might bark after they see another dog walking or bark when they first greet you when you get home. Barking is a natural instinct for dogs and is a way for them to express excitement, so keep that in mind when you are trying to figure out the cause of a bark.