Why is your dog barking at other dogs?

Dog barking on a leash outdoors

Photoboyko / Getty Images

Dogs, like people, vocalize what is going on in their head in response to their surroundings. Whether you and your dog meet another dog at the park, in the line at the pet store, or at the groomer’s office, it’s common for one or both dogs to bark in greeting. So, have you ever wondered why your dog is barking or why your dog is barking at other dogs? Experts say it could mean a number of things.

“Dogs communicate in different ways,” says Jessica Jane MacMurchy, coordinator of Animal Charity of Ohio. “They not only give physical body language cues, but they also use their voices to vocalize what is going on in their body and mind. fear.”

According to MacMurchy, there are various reasons dogs bark, not to mention barking at each other. It can range from expressing excitement, joy, or anxiety. While we all wish we could talk to our pets, there are ways to understand the difference between a happy and fearful reaction. “To be able to determine what your dog’s bark is saying, we always recommend that you use a positive reinforcement training center to take a body language class,” says MacMurchy. “There are signs and clues you can learn about all dogs that will help you determine what a dog’s bark is saying.”

Related: The Quietest Dog Breeds That Are Not Likely to Bark

Look and observe

To interpret your dog’s reaction to meeting another dog, watch if he steps back while giving a low growl. This is a sign that your dog is afraid. Conversely, if you constantly see your dog barking out the window at other animals like squirrels and cats, your dog is likely to be bored or perhaps territorial about the house. MacMurchy adds that, in most cases, when dogs bark at each other, it is a playful and natural response that expresses their desire to play; this barking is sometimes accompanied by a “play bow” when dogs tilt their front legs and wag their tails.

A lack of socialization can also cause reactivity – this is when dogs don’t understand how to socialize with other dogs; this may be because they haven’t had a lot of opportunities to interact with other dogs, or they haven’t been trained. This nervousness can be corrected with training and safe interactions with other dogs.

Understanding your dog’s social situation as well as body language with other dogs will help you better understand exactly what they are trying to say.

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