There are times when you want your dog to bark – mainly for protection, and there are times where you don’t.
But when it comes to barking, it is important that you have realistic expectations.
Asking a dog to never bark is like asking a child to never speak.
With that being said, there are some dogs that bark a little too much.
And Pit Bulls can often fall into this category.
But Why Pit Bulls Are So Vocal?
~ TABLE OF CONTENTS ~
Why Is My Dog So Vocal?
It would be irresponsible for us to tell you that we know exactly why your dog is so vocal.
All dogs are different, so we can’t speak for your dog personally.
But if pit bulls are barking too much, it is probably for one of the following reasons:
1. They Are Being Protective Or Territorial.
Pit Bulls are bred to be protective. They love their family and will do anything that they can to protect them.
And if this means barking to fend off a potential intruder, then so be it.
Territorial barking is often accompanied by an extreme state of alertness, and sometimes even aggression.
With a Pit Bull, it is good to tame this type of barking when they are young before it reaches an aggressive stage.
2. It Is Fearful.
Many dogs bark out of fear. This might be in reaction to something that caught them off guard, like sirens or loud noises.
It could also be caused by sights that are unfamiliar to them, like bicycles or people in hats.
If your Pit Bull is barking out of fear, you may need to hire a professional trainer to help desensitize them.
Alternatively, you can try your best to distract them from the stimulus using a treat or praise.
3. It Is Bored Or Lonely
Pit Bulls require a great deal of love, affection, and stimulation.
They have lots of energy, and they need to expose of that energy through walking, running, and playing.
When they are left alone for extended periods, they can become sad, unhappy, or bored.
If you find that your Pit Bull barks mostly while you are away, boredom or loneliness is probably the reason.
Make sure your dog isn’t bored.
Give them plenty of attention while you are home, and make sure you provide them with treats or toys to keep them busy while you are away.
4. It Is Greeting Someone.
Sometimes dogs greet each other, or people with a bark. In cases like these, your Pit Bull will probably be jumping, wagging its tail, or showing other signs of excitement or happiness.
5. Attention Seeking
Dogs are often like children, and sometimes negative attention is better than no attention at all. When a dog barks, it gets your attention.
And in some cases, owners even give in to the barking by providing the dog with a treat or play time.
When this happens, you are reinforcing the barking behavior.
The best way to curb attention seeking barks is by ignoring them, and providing your Pit Bull with attention once they are quiet.
6. Separation Anxiety.
If a dog is barking excessively while you are away, it could be due to more than just loneliness or boredom.
They could have separation anxiety.
When this happens, barking is often accompanied by other behaviors like pacing, destructiveness, and inappropriate elimination.
Curbing this type of behavior requires a commitment to training, and possibly even crate training to ease your dog’s anxiety.
Understanding exactly why your Pit Bull barks require close attention to their behavior while they are barking.
For example, if you notice that they are often on guard while barking, they are probably being territorial.
If you notice that they are barking mostly while you are away, it could be anxiety.
Do Pit Bulls Have Any Other Types Of Vocalizations?
When dogs are vocal, they are generally trying to communicate with us. But communication doesn’t always come in the form of a “bark”.
In fact, there are 5 other types of vocalizations that our Pit Bull may use to communicate with us.
Let’s take a look:
Baying comes in the form of a deep-throated, prolonged bark. Baying can often sound like a long moaning.
It is often used by dogs who are hunting prey. Alternatively, this type of vocalization can be used to fend off an intruder.
There are two types of growl that dogs use, and they are both on totally opposite ends of the spectrum. The growl most people usually think of is the aggressive growl that is used as a warning sign.
When a Pit Bulls growls aggressively, it means back off of what you are doing.
And if a Pit Bull is growling at you, we suggest you heed to their warning.
Pit Bulls are extremely loving and gentle dogs, but if they do ever decide to attack, you will not come out the winner.
The other type of growling, on the opposite end of the spectrum, is a playful growl.
This type of growl is usually accompanied by a good ol’ tail wag.
Howling is a common form of communication between dogs.
Why is it so common?
It is generally seen to be a form of communication between pack members.
Dogs often use this form of communication to locate other dogs, to call another pack member, or as a sign of distress.
Some dogs also howl along with the sounds of fire or police sirens.
D. Whimpering and Yelping
If your Pit Bull is whimpering or yelping, this is a good sign that they are in pain.
Alternatively, some dogs whimper when they are excited.
You can easily tell the difference between the two types, as excitement whimpering will often be accompanied by jumping, licking, and barking.
Whining sounds somewhat like whimpering but is often louder and more intense. There are numerous reasons why a Pit Bull may whine.
Whining can mean your dog wants something, like to go outside or to have a drink.
It can also mean that they are feeling frustrated with things like being restrained on a leash, or being separated from their owner.
How Can I Tame My Vocal Pit Bull?
If your Pit Bull is being extremely vocal, it is usually for a reason.
Pay close attention to the type of vocalization they are portraying, as well as the types of behaviors that go along with it.
Many times barking and other vocalizations are a sign that your dog is stressed out, hurt, or that it needs something from you.
But if you have ruled out these few concerns, and your Pit Bull is still barking excessively,
there are a few things that you can do to help curb the behavior:
1. Give Them Plenty Of Exercise.
From the words of the wise – “A tired Pit Bull is a good Pit Bull”.
If your Pit Bull is keeping you awake at all hours of the night, for seemingly no reason, it could be because they are bored.
Alternatively, they could have excessive energy that they need to release. In such a case, you may need to provide them with more exercise.
Make sure your Pit Bull is getting plenty of exercise every day to ensure they are sleepy at night.
2. Give Your Pit Bull Lots Of Love And Affection.
As we mentioned above, sometimes barking can be a way of gaining attention.
When a Pit Bull is not getting enough positive attention, they may seek out the negative.
The result is loud, or even destructive behaviors. To prevent this, give your Pit Bull lots of love and affection throughout the day.
3. Ignore The Behavior
If you feel that your Pit Bull is barking to get attention, ignore the behavior. If you tend to them while barking, you are rewarding them.
This is true even if the attention you are giving them is negative. To a dog, negative attention is still attention.
Try telling your Pit Bull to stop, but if they don’t listen after one command, ignore them.
Turn your back and walk away. As soon as they stop barking, give them positive attention immediately.
In conclusion, remember that your vocal dog does not speak English.
Barking is their only form of communication, and in most cases when your Pit Bull barks, they are trying to tell you something important.
Pay attention to the barks, and try to figure out what they are telling you.
- In cases of excessive barking, try some of the solutions above.
- If you are still having issues, you may want to consider hiring a professional to train both you and your dog how to cope with barking.
P.S. Yes, we said train YOU! In most cases, our dog’s behaviors are a direct reaction to our behaviors.
Though we don’t know it, we may be indirectly teaching our dogs to react in certain ways.
In return, we must train ourselves how to act, so that our dogs can respond the way we want them to!