Dog bark sounds

Dog Bark Sounds: What Do They Mean?

I live in an apartment complex sandwiched between dog lovers. “Wonderful,” you say! Who doesn’t want to watch curious dogs run around and play? It’s a formula for happiness and lower stress.

Unfortunately, the two big hounds that live upstairs are barkers. And bark they sure do!

Every morning between 5:30 and 6 am they start their howling! About what? I have no idea!

But I can describe it in two words: not good.

And once they get going, the little dog downstairs joins the chorus. It’s really a sight to behold.

So I did some research to figure out what these bloody hounds could be going on about and here’s what I discovered. The below table is a summary of research conducted by the Journal of Comparative Psychology regarding the meaning of dog barking. It’s a pretty impressive study so I thought I’d share their results.

Dog Bark Sounds and Their Meaning

Type of BarkBark Meaning
a few short, even-toned barkshello, or how are you? (if you’re American)
a few short and high pitched barkscome play with me
short barks, which are sometimes high pitchedpay me some attention, I need something
a high-pitched, loud, ongoing barkI don’t know you and you make me nervous
short howls or short yapsI’m happy or excited
sharp, continuous yelpsI’m in pain! or I’m scared!
sharp, loud, and continuous barks I sense danger and we should be on alert!
a low, even-toned barkget away from me!
soft, low growldo you see or hear that?
long, unhappy howlI’m lonely and bored
the siren howl (with sirens in the background for effect)I’m singing along!
weak growl followed by a single barkI’m scared and uncertain so stay back
short, high-pitched weep followed by sharp barkslet’s go! hurry up!
a deep growl followed by a sharp bark and an aggressive display of teethback off or I’ll bite you!
a long growl accompanied by a wagging tailI’m having fun!

Final Thoughts

If your dog barks when you leave him alone, exercise him before you go. Your neighbors will thank you.

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But you say, some dogs bark excessively, even after being exercised. Well then, maybe hiring a professional dog trainer is the best option.

Whatever you do, just be kind to your neighbors. =)

Interesting in hearing dogs barking? Check out the sound effects in this video.

Random Dog Quote:

“All his life he tried to be a good person. Many times, however, he failed. For after all, he was only human. He wasn’t a dog.”
-- Charles M Schulz

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