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Why Does My Golden Retriever Howl

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Use Thunder Shirt To Make Your Golden Retriever Feel Safe

Thunder shirt protects the body of your pal. Therefore, it protects your puppy Golden Retriever from possible injuries while playing. Besides this, it covers your pals skin coat for infectious agents.

Thus, it reduces the chances of diseases and infections. As a consequence, this automatically declines your pets howling habit.

What Are Tips Protect Your Golden Retriever In Winter

Every year your Golden Retriever may suffer from depigmentation, snow nose, or pink nose in the winter that turns to be fatal if ignored. So, here are some tips to protect your pet in winter:

Do you think all these tips might be helpful for you?

Do you know more interesting warm-up ideas for your pet?

Schedule Your Puppy Golden Retrievers Activities

If you make a proper schedule for all the daily activities, you can engage your pal throughout the day. So, your pet will get lesser time to feel lonely or bored.

Besides this, all these activities strain your pal. Hence, they will no longer have the energy to howl, whin, or bark. Thus, your pet becomes calm and quiet.

Golden Retriever Feels Cold Due To Humidity

Humidity makes the atmosphere colder due to the higher amount of moisture in the air. And if your location has higher humidity, your Golden Retriever may feel cold.

Besides this, Golden Retriever may suffer from various other health issues due to humid climate conditions. And most of these issues involve respiratory problems.

#3: To Seek Your Attention

Why Does My Golden Retriever Look Sad?

Your dog might howl when you howl because they want your attention. 

And they may also need something at the same time.

It could be that theyre howling because theyre bored. Or maybe theyre howling because theyre hungry. 

And your howls when translated into dog language mean youre hungry too. 

Or it could also be possible that theyve mistaken your sweet-talking or singing with a howl. 

So they howled back to get your attention. 

Problems To Rule Out First

There could be a variety of reasons that your dog is howling. Howling can be a symptom of separation anxiety. Your neighbors may complain of excessive howling while youre away or at work. If your dog is left alone or away from their owner, they may also pace constantly, have destructive behavior, soil the house, or have depression. 

Acting out because of separation anxiety should not be punished harshly. Instead, identify the problem and make arrangements for your dog to feel safe and secure in their home. If your dog has separation anxiety, they are constantly in distress while they are alone. This could be triggered by one person leaving them or spending too much time outside away from the family. 

There may be a medical reason behind your dog’s howl. If your dog suddenly starts howling frequently, that may be them telling you theyre hurt or sick. Look for signs or causes of your dog’s distress. If you can’t find anything you should schedule a visit to the vet to rule out illness or injury. 

Why Golden Retrievers Howl

Jennifer Nelson

When possible, we will use affiliate links when referring to recommended products. It does not cost you anything to use these links but it does help us earn a commission on qualifying purchases. Thank you in advance for your support!

Golden Retrievers are incredibly versatile dogs who were originally bred for retrieving games. However, if youve owned one, youre probably aware that they have some interesting quirks, one of those being their obtrusive howls.

If youve ever wondered why your golden retriever howls, look no further! There are a ton of reasons why your pet golden retriever howls, and weve included them all below:

Howling To Communicate With Other Dogs

Just like how humans talk to communicate with other humans, Golden Retrievers can howl to communicate with other dogs. Golden Retrievers are very social animals that need communication amongst other dogs or with us. For that reason, your dog may be howling to try and communicate something important to you. 

Why Do Dogs Howl At Sirens

I have a wonderful team of working gun dogs, Spaniels and Labrador Retrievers. We live in a small village and the sound of sirens is unusual. But on the occasions when an ambulance or fire engine passes through the village with a siren blaring, my dogs all join in. They sound, for all the world, like a pack of wolves.

It starts with one of the spaniels she points her little face to the skies and makes her mouth into an O and begins to wail. Ah ooooooooh, ooo-oooooooh! Quite softly at first, then building to a crescendo. One by one, each of the dogs adds her voice to the others until the siren has long gone

I find it spine tingling and actually quite beautiful but the neighbours may feel differently so I do ask them to stop! My elderly Lab occasionally howls in her sleep, and when she does, all the other dogs join in in exactly the same way. Usually at about 3 oclock in the morning. The theory is, that the dog recognises the siren as a signal from other dogs not known to him. Perhaps a statement of their presence. And that the dog that howls at sirens is responding with a statement of his own.

Well look at that in a bit more detail below in What Does It Mean When A Dog Howls.

Should I Stop My Golden Retriever Puppy From Biting

Quite often, homeowners punish a puppy for play biting. After all, their sharp puppy piranha teeth hurt human skin, and an exuberant puppy has not yet learned what is appropriate. However, punishing the puppy for play biting is a mistake. 

Do NOT stop your Golden Retriever puppy from biting. Biting is normal and natural for puppies. When puppy biting stops, so does the opportunity for bite inhibition training. The more your Golden Retriever puppy play bites and receives appropriate feedback, the safer its jaws will be in adulthood.

Consider an adult dog that has not been taught bite inhibition as a puppy. It seems friendly and has never bitten anyone. However, when this friendly dog is threatened, startled, or injured , it may react by biting and without the necessary skill to control its bite pressure.

A well-socialized dog with good bite inhibition often does not bite at all when startled, threatened, or injured, and even if the teeth do make skin contact, it does not break the skin. 

In his book After You Get Your Puppy, animal behaviorist, veterinarian, and legendary dog trainer Dr. Ian Dunbar says punishing a puppy to stop biting is a big mistake.  With no opportunities to play-bite, the puppy never learns how to inhibit bite force or frequency.

All is fine until someone accidentally treads on the dogs foot or shuts the car door on his tail, whereupon the dog bites and the bite punctures the skin because there has been insufficient bite inhibition, says Dr. Dunbar.

Fix Howling Due To Lack Of Attention

It could be the case that your Labrador does it since it knows that it will get more attention from you when it does it.

Instead, it would help give it attention throughout the day by training it, walking it, and playing with it. It would help to stop rewarding it with attention when it starts groaning.

Prevention Is Better Than Cure

As they say, it is easier to establish a behavior earlier than to re-establish it after. Golden Retrievers and many kinds of dogs possess impeccable intelligence. Because of it, training them isnt much of a problem.

Also, Golden Retrievers are known for their obedience and responsiveness. So, with your patience and passion, you can teach them whatever you want them to learn. 

From their young age, you can already establish and adjust their howling behavior. You can do this by simply rewarding them for being quiet than paying attention to them when they make noise or do anything terrible. 

As retrievers want your attention most of the time, it will be instilled in them that they should keep quiet to get what they want from you.

You can also introduce to them the words Stop, Quiet, and train them what these words mean. You can do this by giving them a treat whenever they respond to your command accordingly.

How To Stop Your Dog Howling

Why Do Dogs Howl?

Howling at triggers like sirens and instruments is usually short lived. The dog thinks that the trigger is a territorial cry and is responding with one of his own. You may be able to cut the howling short by teaching your dog to be quiet at a signal from you. Plenty of edible rewards after the cue be quiet usually works to stop a dog howling. You cant eat and howl at the same time

Dogs that howl through separation anxiety are like puppies that have never learned that being left alone isnt dangerous. This type of howling can be treated by getting at the root cause the dogs fear of being alone. This means de-sensitising your dog to solitude. You can find out more about that in our article on separation anxiety.

Why Does My Dog Howl And How Can I Make Them Stop

As a dog parent, you know how daunting, rewarding and yet sometimes frustrating it can be to decipher what your dog is telling you. While progress is being made in our understanding of canine vocalizations, theres still a lot to be learned. One canine behavior that still perplexes animal behavior researchers is howling. Why do some dogs howl while others do not? Are they channeling their inner wolf? Or do they hear something that hurts their ears?

Do All Dogs Howl At Sirens

Not all dogs practice this behavior, though breeds as varied as Boston Terriers to Boxers start howling at fire trucks, ambulances, or police cars when they pass by. Hounds like Beagles, Coonhounds, Foxhounds, and Bloodhounds, are known for their distinctive howls, likely because theyve been selectively bred to howl while on the hunt to let their handlers know where they are.

Many of the Nordic breeds, such as Malamutes and Huskies, are also howlers, Miller adds, perhaps because they are believed to be closer to their wolf ancestry than some of our other breeds.

The Causes Of Howling A Summary

Howling serves two distinct purposes

  • A statement of territorial rights this is our place .
  • Group cohesion maintaining contact and keeping the dog family together as a unit.

The first purpose is what makes dogs howl at sirens and musical instruments. The second purpose is what makes dogs howl when they are left alone.

A Dog Behaviorist Can Help Address Excessive Howling

If these tips do not work and howling continues to be a challenge, then seek professional help.

Try looking for a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist or a board-certified veterinary behaviorist near you.

If you cannot find a behaviorist in your area, you can hire a Certified Professional Dog Trainer instead. Many CPDTs offer classes that can help with attention-seeking howling.

However, if you are hiring a CPDT, ensure that they have extensive experience in desensitization and counterconditioning.

Is your dog displaying excessive howling that keeps annoying the neighbors with no solution in sight? Here at Positive Paws, we customize a plan to address specific issues such as separation anxiety and aggression. By identifying the triggers behind your dogs behavior, we can help replace those unacceptable behaviors with desirable ones.

Reason 2: A Sign Of Loneliness

Howling among Golden Retrievers or other kinds of dogs could also mean loneliness. Golden Retrievers always want to be with their owners that they feel extremely sad when they are left alone.

You might hear your Golden Retriever howling softly when you come back home late. It is because they already miss you, and they are trying to lead you back home like what wolves do.

Why Do Golden Retrievers Howl Reasons & Solutions

Lily Scott

Has your Golden Retriever been howling? Do you want to understand why your Golden Retriever howls and how you can train their howling behavior? Luckily, you have come to the right place.

Although it may sound relatively strange, it is normal for dogs to howl. Some breeds howl frequently, and some species do not howl at all. The Golden Retriever is among the breeds that howl naturally. Fortunately, when your Golden Retriever howls, it is often not a cause for worry. However, there are severe cases when you should intervene.

Without taking too much time, let us dive straight into why your Golden Retriever howls and when you should worry.

Table of Contents

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  • Is Howling A Serious Health Issue In A Puppy Golden Retriever

    Most of the time, the howling habit of a puppy Golden Retriever is an instinct or a general expression of their emotions. But sometimes, your pal may also use this sound as a warning sign to indicate a serious health hazard.

    Thus, to know the severity of howling in a puppy Golden Retriever, you must look for the following signs:

    • Breathing problems and difficulty
    • Lumps, rashes, or scaly skin
    • Excessive Barking

    So, if your puppy shows these signs along with howling, you must get it clear that the issue is fatal than an instinct. Therefore, you should talk to the Vet immediately for early prognosis and effective treatment of the health issue.

    They Are Prone To Many Health Problems

    Why your Golden Retriever howls

    As with any purebred dog, Golden Retrievers have their share of health problems. Some health problems that a golden can be prone to include:

    Hip & Elbow Dysplasia, Cataracts, Epilepsy, Hypothyroidism, Heart Disease, and Skin Conditions like Allergies. This is just to name a few, and not all goldens will have all of these problems, or have any of these problems.

    If you are considering this breed, you need to be aware of the health issues that affect them.

    When buying a purebred puppy, it is important to find a good reputable breeder and ask for the health clearances of the puppys parents. Health clearances show that a dog has been tested and cleared for a certain condition.

    For more questions to ask a breeder, and to find out how to pick a puppy from a litter,

    Train Your Puppy Golden Retriever To Enjoy Alone

    Crate training can contribute to help your pal understand that they can be happy alone. And loneliness doesnt mean threat or danger. After crate training, a puppy Golden Retriever learns to enjoy its own company and stops howling.

    However, some other training to discipline your pet is potty training, bite inhibition training, diabetic assistance training, barking control training, and aggression management training.

    In Response Of Trigger Factors

    Golden Retrievers are intelligent dogs. So, they can sense when something is wrong by analyzing the environment. Thus, these dogs sometimes howl in response to trigger factors to alert others.

    Usually, the trigger factors that make your pal start howling in response are:

    • Loud noise
    • Howling sound of other dogs
    • Barking sounds

    What Does It Mean When A Dog Howls

    Studies in wolves have shown that howls can encode individual and group identities. In other words, dogs can recognise the howls of dogs that they know, and can tell when a howl, is the howl of a strange dog or dogs.

    DNA tests show us that dogs are descended from wolves, they are in fact, the same species. And howling is likely to be an instinctive part of that genetic inheritance. The original purpose of this powerful sound is likely to be found in protecting or identifying territorial boundaries, and in keeping the family group safely together.

    Howling carries a long way outdoors. My little spaniel throws her head back when she howls because it helps to project the sound even further. In wild canids, this head up projection of a loud howl  is a way of saying we live here this is our place. There is no reason to think that your dog is doing it for any other purpose. In other words by howling, your dog is saying this is me, and this is where I am

    When my dog howled at my clarinet, he probably interpreted my playing as me saying here I am. He was effectively saying me too! My mothers fears for his ears were probably completely unfounded.

    How Can You Warm Your Golden Retriever

    Owing to the enormous about of energy, Golden Retriever can tolerate the colder temperature. But if the body temperature drops to extremities , the dog needs assistance to warm themselves.

    Here are some of the ideas to warm your Golden Retriever when it gets cold.

    • Clean Golden Retriever thoroughly before it enters the house. Use should brush and blow-dry its hair.
    • Always supervise your pet when it plays. Never leave the pet alone.
    • Do not shave the hair of your pet. It is the worst idea.
    • Ensure your Golden Retriever is completely dry and clean before leaving the house.
    • Make comfortable and warmer resting and sleeping areas for your pet.
    • Pay attention to the diet of your pet. Include all the essential nutrients with necessary food supplements. Also, encourage the pet by giving natural snacks as treats.
    • Ensure that your pal drinks an adequate amount of water.
    • Engage your pet in indoor games and give sufficient attention to your pet.
    • Use dress or accessories to warm your Golden Retriever.

    Are these ideas helpful for your pal?

    What do you do to warm your pet?

    Developing A Game Session With People

    The game sessions between dogs and people share some of the characteristics mentioned above, such as grunting. Especially if we make use of teethers or wind-up toys, it is quite likely that our dog will growl while struggling with it. It is important to note that the dog does not growl without reason, on the contrary, it continues to make use of its rich body language and the typical vocalizations of its species so that we understand that it is playing.

    During the practice of this type of game, we must let our dog win sometimes, but we must also win at others so that it does not begin to show possession towards these toys and does not lead to a behavior problem. A good tool that allows us to control possessiveness is to teach the dog the command loose or leave, which will help us to retrieve any toy in a positive way.

    Hang Out With Your Pet Dog

    Some dogs howl because they feel lonely, so if you keep them outside or you left them alone in the house for an extended period, they could start howling. You should check after your dog and spend more time with him, but if you are obliged to leave your dog home alone, be sure to give him some toys or chewing products to keep him a little busy

    Why Do Golden Retrievers Get Cancer

    Dr. Sara Redding Ochoa, DVM

    When possible, we will use affiliate links when referring to recommended products. It does not cost you anything to use these links but it does help us earn a commission on qualifying purchases. Thank you in advance for your support!

    Do you own a Golden Retriever?  Your Golden Retriever may have recently been diagnosed with cancer.  This is often a disease you may have heard a lot of Golden Retrievers owners say that their dog developed.  While they commonly do develop cancer, but this does leave many people wondering why this breed develops cancer than many other breeds. 

    Daily Exercising With Your Puppy Golden Retriever

    Why is my Golden Retriever so aloof and distant ...

    Being a highly energetic dog, your puppy needs at least an hour of exercise every day to manage its energy level. Besides this, exercise can increase your pals socializing skills and makes it more lovely. So, take your pet for walks, jogging, in parks, hiking, long treks, camping, etc.

    Along with this, playing, fetching, retrieving, etc., will increase your bond with your puppy Golden Retriever. So, they will be more obedient towards you and stops howling under your command.

    Key Reasons Why Dogs Howl

    There are a number of key reasons why dogs howl. Although some of these causes are natural and part of your dogs ancestry, others could be a sign of health issues and should be addressed right away. By learning what makes dogs howl, you can better understand the care you need to give to your beloved pup.

    While dog howling may be annoying, its important to realize that its a way dogs communicate with us. Your canine may howl when hes bored, excited, injured or even when hes happy. Because dog howling can also be a sign of dog sickness, its important to find the answers to the question Why does my dog howl? so you can determine the best possible treatment.

    Are you ready to learn the answer to Why do dogs howl? Here weve gathered a list of the key reasons why dogs howl. Lets dig in and explore!

    #4: Their Wolf Ancestry

    Why does my dog howl when I howl at them?

    The reason for this is because of their wolf ancestry.

    Lets take it back to their roots. 

    I mean, to where your sweet pooch came from, which are the wolves. 

    Dogs are known for their barks, while the wolves howl. 

    Its one of the main differences between the two. But that doesnt mean that they cant do either of them. 

    According to Dr. Marty Becker, wolves can bark too, but not as repetitive as dogs sometimes do. 

    And dogs, well, they howl once in a while. 

    Its in their genes to do this after all. 

    Why wolves howl

    shows howling is one of the main communications of wolves. 

    These wolves have different types of howl, depending on situations and species. 

    For instance, wolves live in vast territories, right?

    So to let their pack and other animals know of their presence, they howl. Its a way for them to call out on their members after a successful hunt. 

    They also howl to let their pack know where their location is when they need help. 

    And lastly, wolves howl as a form of unity and to strengthen their bond. 

    It took thousands of years for wolves to evolve into dogs. But still, both of them share the same instincts. 

    Thats why your dog still does some wolf activities like howling.

    Why Your Golden Retriever Howls

    If you have a Golden Retriever that has a habit of howling then youre probably wondering why. This post will give you a number of reasons why your Golden Retriever might howl and what you can do about it.

    So, why does my Golden Retriever howl? The main reasons are ancestry with wolves, communication, sickness or injury, separation anxiety and defense.

    There actually are a number of different reasons why Golden Retrievers might howl and it may or may not be a cause for concern. If you want to get your Golden Retriever to reduce howl less then you should first figure out what the root cause is and then take measures to correct it after.

    Manage A Comfortable Sleeping Environment

    An uncomfortable sleeping area is often the reason for your pals howling at night. So, you should manage a comfortable bed for your pet in their crate box. Along with this, keep soft blankets, cushions, and puzzles in their crate box.

    Also, keep the environment of the house peaceful. After you manage these things, you will for sure observe a decline in your puppy Golden Retriever howling.

    Do Sirens Hurt A Dogs Ears

    While dogs have much more sensitive hearing than ours, its unlikely that loud siren sounds hurt their ears.

    Miller states that dogs generally dont react to sirens in ways that suggest pain, especially if they respond by howling.

    Signs that a dog finds sirens aversive might include hiding, trembling, and running away from the sound, rather than staying in place and howling, she says.

    For many dogs, howling is a group sport, because when one begins the others join in. This also suggests that siren sounds arent painful, despite dogs sensitive hearing.

    Why Your Golden Retriever Howls At Sirens And Thunder

    Below are some common reasons why Golden Retrievers do it and what would make them more likely to be the reason why yours has been doing it.


    The reason why it does it could be that it is in its genes to howl in situations where there are loud or high-pitched noises. It could be the case that your Golden Retriever does it due to an evolutionary trait getting it to let other dogs know of its location in the area. This is something that wolves and dogs in the wild are known to do.


    Wolves and dogs, in the wild, will howl to tell other members of the pack where it is or to scare off other predators that are entering their territories. In the case of your Golden Retriever, it might be the case that the howling is to alert other dogs or members of its pack of its location or to alert other dogs of possible danger. It could also be to warn others not to enter its territory. 

    A change in air pressure

    The cause could be due to a change in the air pressure. This is because it will warn it that there is a storm on the way and it might hear the low-frequency noises of the thunder as it approaches . This would be more likely if it starts behaving differently before the thunder has even arrived and if it also becomes anxious.

    Sensitive hearing

    Golden Retriever have better hearing than we do and they can hear higher-pitched sounds too. It could be the case that the high pitched sounds of sirens cause it to howl since it is of a similar pitch to other dogs howling.

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