Dogs bark – it’s the fact of the matter. How much your dog barks, however, is dependent on a number of factors, from environment, diet, exercise and even breed. Many dog owners find themselves frustrated with how their dog barks incessantly or late at night, keeping everyone awake; it’s just part of having a pet, and it’s up to us to better understand our canine family members.
First, it’s important to remember that not all dogs respond to the same stimuli in the same way. A certain environment might suit one dog or breed better than another, and some dogs naturally bark at things more frequently. We’ve done our homework and looked into what the most common causes for frequent barking might be.
Many dogs naturally like to alert their owners of things happening around them – from doorbells ringing to cars arriving, events are things you should know about, and your dog has got your back. Don’t get upset with your puppy for bringing things to your attention: remember, they don’t know that you’re aware of everything they see.
More regular barking at seemingly arbitrary times could be a sign of loneliness. Many dogs really struggle with being the only canine in the house, or if you’re away often, being totally alone. It might be worth investigating the possibility of getting another dog as a friend for a lonely pup.
Barking often becomes more intense in moments of excitement or frustration, particularly at mealtimes. Before going for walks, before play time or when they’re anticipating dinner are all common times for barking to increase. Again, it’s not necessary to try and discipline a dog in such moments, because they really are just excited to see you and have their time with their humans.
Some dogs are known to be attention seekers. They will bark at nothing in particular for some time just to let you know that you’ve been ignoring them or missing walks and play times. Having a dog is a big responsibility, and part of that is spending time with them to make sure they really do become part of the family. Regular walks will often alleviate boredom and satisfy most dogs’ need for attention, especially if they’re at regular times of the day.
Remember, sometimes barking is a sign of your dog trying to tell you something more serious – it could be external, like the presence of an intruder – but sometimes it’s internal, a message that something is medically wrong or uncomfortable. An increase in barking for no clear reason could be a sign of something causing your dog pain, and in such a case, please consult your vet. It might not only solve the barking problem, but it could also save your dog from what is potentially a lot of pain.
If you have any doubts about what could be making your dog bark, the safest option is to ask your vet. A good vet will often offer free advice, so don’t be afraid to ask! Just be sure to pay attention to your pooch and be attentive to what they’re trying to tell you, and you’ll be on your way to a healthy and happy relationship with your animal family.