Dog sounds convey a variety of messages. It’s up to you to understand what your dog is trying to tell you.
When your dog softly whimpers, that means: “I’m hurt!” or “I’m frightened.” The average human is most likely to hear this at the vet, when a dog is suffering, or when an obedient dog is in a strange location that appears intimidating. This is a mewing dog sound that young dogs make when they feel cold, hungry, or troubled.
Loud, long-drawn-out whining sounds mean: “Please give me something . . .” or “I want something …” A puppy usually uses this sound when he’s waiting for his meal, or for the leash to be put on, or when they are trying to get his master’s attention, etc.
Dog sounds: Sighs and baying
When a dog sighs while lying down and placing his head on his forepaws, there can be two meanings, depending on the context and his facial expressions. With his eyelids half-open, this is a sign of enjoyment or content, and it means, “I am happy and ready to relax.” But if the dog’s eyes are wide open, this is a sign of dissatisfaction that something the dog expected hasn’t transpired, and the message is: “I quit!”
When a dog is baying, he’s sharing the sound hounds during a hunt. That message simply translates as “Follow me this way!” “Let us attack him!” or “All together now!”
Dog sounds: Howls
When a dog yip-howls — or more of a yip-yip-yip-howl, with the final howl entirely drawn out — your dog is saying, “I am very lonely,” “I feel deserted!” or “Where is everybody?”
When a dog howls, he’s saying: “I’m over here!” “This is my space!” or “I hear you out there!” A confident dog will howl just to announce his location. Howling also often happens in response to a yip-howl from another canine. Notice, the sound is more of an echo rather than the yip-howl itself, which can sound rather mournful.
When a dog moans: “ar-owl-wowl-wowl . . .” over a short period, it is a sound of impulsive pleasure and excitement that means “I am flabbergasted!” or “Let’s play!” A dog usually moans when he anticipates something exciting is going to happen.
When a dog is panting, it means he’s very excited and is trying to tell you: “Let’s go now!”
Dog sounds: Vocalization
Dogs can also learn vocalizations. For example, the bark that dogs often give to the command speak sounds very different from an impulsive bark. The same can be said for the bark that police dogs are taught.
Many dogs can be taught to use certain sounds for specific settings, from simple barks, moans, or play growls to more complicated dog sounds that may resemble yodeling.
Kelly Marshall is a featured author on Oh My Dog Supplies. For more articles by Kelly, visit Oh My Dog Supplies.