Interpretation of 20 Dog Barks to Help You Understand Your Pet Better

Interpretation of dog barks
Whether you have got a new canine friend or if you already have one for a while now, it is helpful to know what your dog is trying to say to you. Here, you will learn about different barking sounds of a dog and their meaning so that you can communicate effectively with your pal.
Did You Hear That?
  • The breed Basenji doesn't have a bark at all! It is more like a singing sound.
  • The breeds that bark the most are Terriers and German Shepherd.
Dogs make gestures and sounds to communicate just as we do. Though your dog won't "talk" like you do, but you can interpret its feelings if you know exactly what to watch out for. Dogs have different kinds of barks for different reasons. They communicate when they are happy, playful, sad, hungry, nervous, fearful, or angry. They are our best friends, and they understand us. It's that simple! They can sense when we are happy and when we are in bad mood. They are great communicators. You just need to know what your pet is trying to "say".

Knowing how to interpret their barks will help you in understanding your dog better. At the end of this write-up, we are sure you will realize that your dog really does "talk!"
What do Different Dog Barks Mean?
The vocal communications of a dog can be classified as barks, howls, whines, growls, and whimpers. You must be hearing all these from your dog. They bark for many reasons including alert, alarm, boredom, demand, fear, suspicion, seeking attention, and playfulness. They have their unique way to give subtle messages to us.
BARKING - "Bow-Vow"
You should learn to differentiate the barks of your dog and analyze what they are trying to communicate.
Loud and High-pitched
This barking is both territorial and aggressive. Dogs can bark excessively responding to other dogs, or at animals who approach their territories. They even bark at people who they think are trying to get into their area.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"Somebody is entering our territory!"
Short, Frequent, and Alerting
This kind of barking means that the dog is warning the pack or humans of a possible danger that lies ahead.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"Alert everyone! There is an intruder. I am protecting you."
Crisp and Short
This type of bark means that the dog is greeting you. It is usually one or two short and sharp barks. It is usually seen when the dog sees a familiar person or the owner arrives home.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"Hello there! I missed you so much."
High-pitched
The high-pitched bark is when the dog is in a playful mood and wants you to play with it. This playful barking simply sounds playful. The rising bark following this may mean that your dog is having fun.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"Arruff! Come on, let's play!"
High-pitched and Sharp Yelp
This kind of bark is an indication that your dog might be afraid, ill, or in some pain.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"Help me! I am scared."
Low-pitched and Single
This is their another way of warning someone or another dog to back off. It usually happens when the dog is disturbed from its sleep or is irritated.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"Back off! Don't mess with me!"
HOWLING - "Woo o-hooo"
Dogs howl usually when they are lonely, excited, or to sound a warning to other dogs.
Long and Continuous
This type of howling pattern indicates that your dog is feeling lonely and isolated.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"Anybody home? I am lonely."
Short and Rising Pitch
Dogs make this kind of sound when they are happy or excited.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"This is so exciting!"
Baying
You will hear this type of sound when the dog gives a hunting signal. The dogs smell the prey and warns others to keep close. This usually happens in a pack of dogs.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"Follow me! I smell something there."
Long and Siren
This sound is usually heard when the dog responds to another howling or continuous noise.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"I am here!"
GROWLING - "Grrrr!"
Dogs growl while playing as well. So make sure you don't confuse their growling with being aggressive.
Quiet and Low Growl
This is a dog's way of snapping at humans and asking them to back off if they are trying to get too close.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"Back off or else I'll bite you!"
Low Growl and Short Bark
This sound is made when your dog is responding to a threat.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"Grrr! Beware!"
Medium Growl with Bark
This sound is made when the dog is feeling nervous or aggressive.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"I am terrified!"
Low Grumble
Some dogs growl or "grumble" in pleasure especially when they are playing or being petted. It will often be followed by excited barking.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"I feel good!"
Low and Continuous
This barking sound means that your dog is feeling anxious or suspicious.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"If you come near to me, I will fight you!"
WHINING
Whining is mostly heard more in puppies. It may even mean that your dog is afraid of the thunder sounds or other strange noises.
Short Whines with Short Barks
This means that your dog is curious and excited.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"What's for dinner?"
High-pitched
This is a sign that your dog needs something, or your attention.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"I am hungry. Feed me."
WHIMPERING and YELPING - "Yip-yip-yip"
Dogs whimper or yelp especially when they are in pain or distressed. However, dogs whimper also when they are excited and happy to see their owners after a long day.
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Soft Whimpers
This often indicates that the dog is a bit anxious of getting separated from you or afraid.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"I am frightened! Do something."
Single Yelp
A single yelp is in response to a sudden pain that the dog experiences.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"Ouch!"
Series of Yelps
This is an indication that your dog might be in severe pain or really scared.
What is your pet dog trying to say?
"It's hurting! I might die!" or "I am really very scared!"
So now you see? Dogs can "talk" too! However, it might turn into their behavioral problem if not controlled on time. There are several ways to control their unnecessary barking, howling, and growling. Stop your dog the first time it barks. You don't want it to become a bad habit, do you? You should know how and when to respond to your dog. Knowing why your dog makes certain noises will help in dealing with the problem. You can also seek help from a good trainer or vet.