Dogs naturally communicate with their bodies and their vocals. They bark when they’re excited or feeling threatened. They growl when they’re scared or angry. They whine when they aren’t getting their way or they’re feeling poorly. They also howl for a variety of reasons, including just to have fun. But nobody likes a dog that constantly barks, whines, or howls
On the other hand, if a dog can howl on command, it can be a fun and entertaining experience. But you should be in control of when your dog howls, not them. Luckily, it’s easy to get your dog to howl on command. You can even teach them when it’s not all right to howl. Here are a few simple ways to make your dog howl when you’re in the mood for a little fun and entertainment, as well as a few tips you can use to keep them from howling when you don’t want them to.
1. Be a Role Model
Getting your dog to howl can be as simple as leading by example. Once you start to howl at your furry family member, chances are that it won’t be long before they start howling back. Practice howling at each other for a few minutes every day while giving a verbal cue before each howl. This will help your dog associate their howling with the verbal cue. Eventually, you can give them just the cue and they will start howling all on their own.
2. Turn the Music Up
Music can make your pooch howl if it features notes and harmonies that make them excited or intrigued. Start with one genre of music, and see if you can get your dog to howl for a couple of songs. If it doesn’t work, switch to another music genre until you get howling in return. Keep trying different genres until you’ve found the type of music that your dog prefers. Whenever you feel like howling together, you can put the music on and have fun!
3. Watch Howling Videos
Another easy way to get your dog to howl is to find and play video clips of other dogs howling. The action should engage your pooch and make them want to join in on the fun. If they don’t start howling on their own, inspire them by howling at the television or computer screen yourself. But beware that if your dog enjoys this activity, they’ll likely want to howl any time that they hear a dog bark or howl on a movie or outside of your home.
4. Play Stimulating Sounds
It’s not just other dogs howling that can stimulate your dog and make them want to howl. Find a CD or an online audio clip that features sounds of wild animals, birds, or cat sounds and play that for your pooch. Chances are that they’ll be inspired by the noises and want to chime in with a big howl. Once they start howling, praise the behavior so they know it’s all right to do so when they hear these sounds. Any time you want your dog to howl in the future, all you should have to do is play the stimulating sounds that you’ve collected for them.
5. Play a Musical Instrument
Playing a flute, guitar, piano, or even the drums may be enough to get your dog to howl along and create beautiful music with you. Play a variety of different tunes and harmonies to see which your dog likes the best. You may find that certain notes make them want to snuggle up and relax, while others make them want to party hard.
Then, there will be some (probably the higher notes) that will inspire your dog to howl. Once you find those notes, you can play them any time that you want to enjoy a howling session.
Keep Unwanted Howling at Bay
After your dog learns how to howl at home, they may want to do it when you aren’t in the mood to hear it. So, it’s just as important to teach your dog when not to howl. Luckily, it’s easy to discourage the practice when it’s unwanted. Instead of praising them like you do when they howl on command, you should simply ignore their howling behavior when you don’t want them to do it.
If this doesn’t work, you can put them in their kennel for a few minutes to calm the behavior and make them understand that when they howl without a cue, there will be consequences to face — in this case, spending time in the kennel rather than with the family like they want to be. After some time, your dog will learn when it is and isn’t okay to bark.
These tips and tricks should have your dog howling in no time! Have you tried any of the ideas on our list yet? If so, let us know what you thought of the results in our comments section below.
Featured Image Credit: Alexas_Fotos, Pixabay