Barking is one of the most recognizable characteristics of dogs. When teaching animal sounds to babies, adults often imitate that well-known “woof” to demonstrate how dogs communicate. Surprisingly to some, all dogs may not make this sound. It may be natural to assume something is wrong with a dog that doesn’t bark, but dog owners should learn the science behind barking before they begin worrying about the condition of their dogs’ hearing.
What is barking, and what does it mean?
Barking is a classic form of vocal communication for dogs. When a dog barks, they could be conveying to their owners that something is wrong, that they are in need or want of food or attention, known as attention-seeking barking, or that someone is approaching their home—territorial barking.
There are many reasons a dog barks, which is why dog owners can benefit from knowing the causes and motivations of their fur babies’ calls. Sometimes the sound of a bark can convey to dog owners its function. Dogs may have different barks for specific needs. For instance, when a dog wants to play, they may bark differently compared to when they are hungry or want to come back inside the house.
Sometimes dogs may bark in response to pain. Your dog may be experiencing an illness or injury and could be barking to communicate these feelings. For instance, your dog may feel uncomfortable on walks if you’ve accidentally put his or her collar and leash on too tight.
One way to prevent discomfort for your dog and avoid distressed, pained barks is to attach your dog’s collar to a harness. Using a harness rather than a leash can be beneficial because harnesses offer more comfort, as they keep dogs from experiencing neck strain. The best dog harnesses are the comfortable, high-quality ones produced by Joyride Harness, which can suit big dogs and small dogs.
The great products made by Joyride Harness utilize side ring technology to prevent pulls and neck strain, allowing dog parents and their fur babies to enjoy better walks. The unique EZ Grip Handle enables dog owners to have more control. Additionally, the special reflective material used in these no-pull dog harnesses increase owners’ and pups’ visibility during night walks. These dog harnesses are not only durable; they come in many colors, allowing dog owners to choose some that are a perfect fit for their dog’s personality and body.
Can a dog bark too much or too little?
While some owners may think their dogs bark excessively, others may feel their dogs don’t bark enough. By nature, some dogs don’t bark a lot, which may be due to their breed. Many large dog breeds don’t bark. Dog breeds, including Great Danes and St. Bernards, for instance, rarely bark or do so quietly.
Some dogs may not bark because they are shy and choose not to be vocal because they don’t want unnecessary attention. Inflamed vocal cords may make barking uncomfortable, causing dogs to stop.
Aging is another reason a dog may bark less compared to others. As they age, Some dogs’ vocal cords may lose the flexibility they once had. Such a change can make their barking quieter. Older dogs may lose some or all of their hearing, causing them to lack reactions to sounds in their environment.
Audiological evaluations with trusted audiological professionals can give humans insight into their hearing abilities. Audiological and hearing aid evaluations in the form of specific tests such as bone conduction, otoacoustic emission, and pure-tone air conduction testing—which focus on humans’ inner ear, middle ear, and eardrum—can help people determine if they are experiencing tinnitus or hearing loss.
Hearing tests for dogs can do the same. Pet owners who have concerns that a lack of barking indicates a medical problem should visit an experienced veterinarian and audiologist. Consulting a professional sooner rather than later can keep any condition a dog may have from getting worse and give dog owners information and solutions that can provide comfort and confidence about their pooches’ silence.