Every time you see other dogs howling, you ask your pooch:
“Why do they howl and you don’t?”
You don’t mind the silence. But sometimes, you wish your dog can also do this.
Now that would be really cool.
In this article, you’ll find out:
- 3 tips to get your dog howling.
- Dog breeds that don’t like to howl.
- 11 interesting reasons why your dog doesn’t howl.
- And much much more…
Table of contents
Why doesn’t my dog howl?
Your dog doesn’t howl for reasons such as their dog breed, being stopped when they howl, getting anxious, not knowing how to do it, having past traumas, sickness, depression, hearing loss, being shy, having no training, or preferring other means of communication.
People also ask:
11 reasons why your dog doesn’t howl
#1: They’re a quiet dog breed
“Woah! How come your dog howls and mine doesn’t?”, you enviously asked your neighbor one day.
Perhaps, the reason why your dog doesn’t howl is because of their dog breed personality.
They’re just the type who doesn’t like being so vocal.
If your dog doesn’t howl. They may not bark often, too, right?
You’re envious of other dog parents whose pooches howl. Or ‘sing’ with them when they’re singing.
But hey, you can consider yourself lucky as well.
If you’re living in a rental, your landlord/landlady won’t complain about any noises.
There’s no need for you to move away from your dog when you have Zoom meetings.
It’s literally ‘peace and quiet’ in your house.
Don’t you just love coming home to a relaxing space?
Here are some quiet dogs from PetMD. (Or breeds that don’t bark and howl much.)
- Scottish Deerhound.
- Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.
#2: Howling isn’t allowed
Your dog doesn’t howl because they’re not allowed to do so. (Or perhaps that’s what they think.)
There must have been a time when they tried to howl. And you shushed them to stop because you’re busy.
You could’ve been at a public place at the time, with people passing you by. Or, while you’re watching an interesting YouTube video. Maybe reading a favorite book.
You perceived your dog’s attempt to vocalize as an interruption. So you defended your quiet time by saying “NO.” In your mind, this is translated to “Let me be for now, ‘kay?”
But your dog might have perceived it as “Howling isn’t something we do in this house. So don’t you even think about it.”
You could’ve also said ‘No’ every time they try to sing with the music playing.
In short, your dog’s always being stopped whenever they howl.
That’s why they think that it’s something they shouldn’t do.
Should you let your dog howl?
First, you should know that howling is a common behavior for dogs.
If you stop them from doing this all the time, they may get sad.
“But why would they be?”
Howling relieves your dog from stress. Or their howls could mean that they’re trying to connect with you.
They see howling with their family as a bonding activity.
And they feel happy when you do it with them.
But if their howls are excessive or too loud, then it’s okay to limit them.
However, take note that you should never hit or strike your pooch to make them stop.
#3: They’re anxious
When an ambulance passes by your house, your other dogs howl because of the siren. Except for one pooch.
“Hey, honey. Why are you so quiet?’, you ask them.
And then that’s when you notice that they’re shaking. They’re also trying to hide under the bed.
It looks like your dog doesn’t howl because they’re not like other dogs. They don’t try to imitate high-pitched and loud sounds.
Instead, they get anxious about it.
It could be because the loud sound of the siren gives them anxiety. Especially if you’re living near a hospital or across a busy street.
Because of their sense of hearing, your dog can hear the sound of the siren 4 times louder than you do.
So if something is loud for you, it’s deafening for your dog.
#4: Your dog doesn’t know how to howl
Your puppy doesn’t howl because they just don’t know how to.
They’re still in their discovery stage. And they don’t know how howling works just yet.
Or maybe they’re a solo pooch.
They don’t have a dog companion or siblings at home. That’s why your dog doesn’t have someone to howl with.
Some dog parents howl with their dogs to teach them.
So if you don’t howl with your pooch, it’s another factor why they don’t do it.
Why dogs howl
You see, howling is a pack thing for dogs. It comes naturally for them because it’s in their genes.
Dogs do it because their wolf ancestors used to do it, too.
Wolves howl as their way to communicate with each other.
They do this to call out on their pack members. To let them know where they are.
And they howl to bond with each other and strengthen their pack.
#5: Past traumas
Another thing that can make your dog stop from howling is negative experiences.
They might have past traumas when they howled before. So they prevent themselves from doing it again.
For instance, they had bad keepers before you. And every time they became vocal, they got hit or punished badly.
So to avoid being hurt, they stop barking or howling at all.
It could also be possible that being in shelter or rescue centers changed them.
Being in one of those places can change a dog entirely.
While others become scared all the time. And they don’t have the confidence to express themselves vocally anymore.
#6: They’re sick or injured
“Awwwhoooo…”, you howled one day. Expecting that your dog will follow after shortly.
But there’s only silence.
How come your dog doesn’t howl with you?
A reason for this sudden change could be because they’re feeling sick. Or they had a recent injury.
“My dog seems pretty fine…”
Your pooch will try their best not to let you and other dogs know that they’re not well. (This is why some dogs hide when they’re ill.)
They don’t want to be seen as sick or weak.
As their dog parent, you must observe their body language and behavior for signs.
One of them is lacking interest in the things they used to enjoy.
For example, your pooch loved to howl with you before. And then all of a sudden, they lost interest in it.
Here are other things to look out for according to VSEC Thousand Oaks:
- Excessive drooling.
- Difficulty in breathing.
- Vomiting and diarrhea.
- Having behavior changes.
- Feeling lethargy or weakness.
Warning: Take your dog to the nearest vet or animal center for an immediate check-up if they’re showing severe signs and symptoms of illnesses.
#7: Your dog is depressed
Another reason why your dog doesn’t howl is because they’re not feeling like themself.
It’s a heartbreaking sight.
Your dog who used to love everything is now sad and depressed.
Now they won’t even play with other dogs. And when you call them, they’d rather sleep and lay on the floor.
Before, they used to enjoy howling with the family. But now they won’t do it anymore.
Not even bark or little whine.
“What could be the reason for my dog’s depression?”
Recent changes in their environment or family could be the reason for this condition.
For instance, they lost a dog parent or a dog companion.
Losing someone they love and share their day-to-day lives with can make any dog depressed.
Another one is if their favorite person moved away. Or relocated to another country.
They miss their presence, that’s why they get super sad and lonely.
Want to learn more about this topic? You can read this article.
#8: Deafness or hearing loss
Most dogs howl because they’re triggered by the sounds they hear.
So if your dog doesn’t howl, a possible reason could be because they’re deaf.
Or they’re starting to lose their sense of hearing.
AKC says that 5% to 10% of dogs in the US suffer from being deaf.
And according to research, canine deafness is caused by several factors.
Like hereditary, their age, or your pooch acquired it from infection or illness.
They’re born deaf
Your pooch could not be hearing properly from the moment they’re born. And it could be because of their genes or birth defects.
In this case, their deafness could be a permanent thing.
They’re getting old
If your pooch suddenly stops howling, it’s possibly because their hearing sense isn’t as sharp as it used to be.
They don’t howl. Because they can’t hear anything anymore.
It’s the same as humans.
As you age, you may notice that your senses will also start to decline.
Your vision will start to blur. You’d be at loss for words sometimes.
And your hearing ability isn’t the same as before.
(Sometimes, you may even ask a person to repeat what they said over and over again.
Until you just decide to nod in agreement to what they’re saying and leave it at that…)
They have an ear infection or illness
Your pooch could be having hearing problems. That’s why they don’t howl like other dogs.
Maybe something is blocking their ears, so they don’t hear sounds properly.
It could be an earwax buildup, or there’s a tumor or swelling in parts of their ears.
“Petya, how can I tell if my dog has hearing problems?”
You can observe your pooch and look out for behaviors like:
- Being unresponsive to sounds.
- Not coming when you call them.
- Shaking or tilting their head frequently.
- Not responding to commands they know.
- Barking excessively because they can’t hear anything.
#9: They’re still shy
When you’re on your first date with someone, you try to look your best.
You avoid laughing too loud. You try to talk as sweetly as you can.
And you don’t try to do things which can make you look bad.
This scenario is somehow the same with your pooch. Especially if you just got them recently.
Some dogs may be obnoxious at first encounter. While there are also others who get shy and quiet at first.
They don’t howl because they’re still reserved around you.
“Is it okay if I do this?
Or will hooman be mad in case I howl?”
They’re still in their adjustment phase. So they may try to tiptoe around you first.
But don’t worry…
Wait until your dog has formed a bond and connection with you.
Once they get comfortable with your presence, you may finally hear their howls.
#10: They’re not trained to howl
Sometimes, dogs need a little push to make them do things.
They roll over, sit, or stand because their dog parents taught them to do these tricks.
In this case, your pooch may not howl because they’re not trained to do this.
Or whenever they’re being trained, they don’t receive any rewards.
Therefore they’re not interested in howling.
#11: They prefer other ways of communication
Lastly, your dog doesn’t like to howl. Because they prefer other ways to talk to you.
Every dog is different.
Your pooch may not be a howling breed. That’s why their (love) language is different from other dogs.
Perhaps your pooch prefers to communicate through barking and ‘talking’.
How do I get my dog to howl? 3 tips
#1: Play howl-inducing sounds
To make your dog howl, play sounds or music that resembles its sound. This will trigger them to imitate it.
Howl with them
If your pooch doesn’t know what a howl is, teach them how to do it yourself.
You can do this by howling multiple times. And then letting them follow after.
Other members of the family can join in, too. Like singing in a choir.
The more the merrier!
Think of it as a fun bonding activity for your pooch and the family. 🙂
Curious to find out more about why your dog may howl with you? Check out this article.
You can also try whistling.
Whistles are a high-pitched sound. So this can be a good trigger to make your pooch howl with you.
Play musical instruments
Fun fact: Did you know that your pooch is a music lover?
Based on a study, classical music like Beethoven’s and Vivaldi’s can make dogs relaxed and calm.
Not only that.
You can also use their love for music to make them howl.
Try playing some tunes on a violin or harmonica. These musical instruments are high-pitched.
And if you play a long note on it, your dog will think of it as a howl. So they may try to howl or ‘sing’ along with it.
You might also like: 7 Incredible Reasons Why Your Dog Howls At Music + 3 Tips
Play a recording of sirens
To get your dog to howl, let them listen to sirens.
You can do this by recording or downloading the sounds of sirens on your phone. (It can be an ambulance siren, a police’s, or a tornado warning siren.)
Let your dog listen to it in low volume first.
And if they don’t show any signs of anxiety, play the recording a little bit louder.
If you have other dogs, you may notice that they’ll imitate the sound by howling.
And once they do, your pooch may now learn how to howl, too.
Show them videos of other dogs howling
“Petya, what should I do? I only have one dog…”
You can still teach your pooch to do this by letting them watch a video of other dogs howling.
Like the other pooches below who guarantee that they can make your dog howl.
#2: Train them to howl
Singing or howling with your dog is fun. You enjoy it as much as your dog does.
Not to mention that it’s also a cool trick that you guys can show your family over at weekend brunches.
So get your dog to howl on command, you have to train them.
Here’s how you can do it.
Step 1: Choose a word command. It can be ‘Howl’ or ‘Let’s sing’.
Step 2: Make your pooch howl. Do this by playing any of the howl-inducing sounds like sirens, music, whistles, etc.
Step 3: Once they do, say your chosen word command.
Step 4: Encourage them by giving treats or rewards by petting. Repeat this exercise until your dog has learned how to howl by command.
And remember, limit giving treats to your pooch after a while.
Or they may howl always that you’d regret training them how to do it in the first place.
#3: Catch them howling
This may be tricky, and it may take some of your time, too.
Your dog may be different.
They may not howl because their howling trigger is not the same as other dogs.
So what you need to do is wait and catch them in the act of howling.
Once you hear it, reward and pet them. This is to let them know that you like them howling.
After that, look for a recording of the same sound that triggered them.
Then play it to make your dog howl once again.