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Ryan Croman: Decoding Your Dogs Bark

Ryan Croman explains the different ways to find out what your dogs barks are trying to tell you. For more from Ryan Croman, visit his website:

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Ryan Croman: Decoding Your Dogs Bark

  1. 1. DECODING YOUR DOG’S BARK Ryan Croman
  2. 2. Dogs may not be able to communicate like humans–but like us–they can change their tones and meaning easily. Dogs have many barks that convey different attitudes.  Unlike people, dog’s barks are unique to their species because each bark has a universal meaning.  
  3. 3. PLAYFUL BARK You’ll hear this sound from your dog when they wish to initiate play. Often, this bark is accompanied by a rapid tail wag. Sound: Stutter or “Ha-ruff” Pitch:  Mid-range
  4. 4. When dogs bark continuously and rapidly, it is a call to action to their owners or other dogs. You’ll often hear this bark if someone new comes into the dog’s territory or the dog suspects danger. They’re telling you to be on alert. Sound: Constant and repetitive Pitch: Mid-range CALL TO ACTION BARK
  5. 5. WARNING BARK This bark tells you your canine is suspicious or suspects there may be a problem or intrusion. In dog language, this means that they either want their owner or the alpha dog of the pack to check out the issue. Sound: Multiple barks with pauses Pitch: Mid-range
  6. 6. One of the most common and joyful barks to hear, a dog greets you with quick and short barks to say hello when you walk through the door. Sound: One or two sharp, short barks Pitch: Mid-range GREETING BARK
  7. 7. QUESTIONING BARK When a dog is curious or questioning about an item or event, you’ll hear a startled or surprised sound. When the sound is repeated once or twice, the dog is telling the owner to come look or alert their pack. Sound: A sharp, single bark Pitch: High to Mid-range
  8. 8. Although a very obvious sign your dog is upset or suffering, owners will hear a series of yelps that indicate the dog is experiencing pain or fear. PAINED BARK Sound: Numerous yelps Pitch: Mid-range
  9. 9. LONELY BARK A lonely bark can be very sad and disheartening to hear. This type of bark can have elements of many tones, but this cry is a call for companionship. Sound: Constant with medium or long pauses Pitch: Mid-range
  10. 10. Ever accidentally step on your dog’s tail? Then you may be familiar with this high-pitched noise. A yelp is very short and notifies you if your dog experiences a sudden or unexpected pain! Sound: Short, one-note Pitch: High-pitch YELP BARK