Have you ever wondered why does your Australian shepherd howl on some occasions? The reasons could be both normal and abnormal. Since most people are curious to know the reasons for this behavior, I decided to craft a helpful article just for you.
In general, Australian shepherds tend to howl due to attention-seeking issues, make contact with other dogs, sexual desire, reaction to high pitch tones, as they feel the danger of something, separation anxiety, when owners away from home, to show their injuries, and discomfort of medical issues.
Usually, Aussies are slightly vocal dogs. But they can never be compared to huskies. Besides common reasons, it might happen due to several abnormal reasons. Having proper awareness about them makes you a responsible owner. So, let’s dive right in.
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Common reasons why some Australian shepherds howl.
We know that dogs are descended from wolves. So, experiencing a high pitch or low pitch howling is kind of a common thing for most dog owners. The problem here, though, is some Aussies tend to howl quite more often for various reasons.
Usually, a low-pitched howling is a captivating experience. Many dogs, including Aussies, do this by looking at the owner and wagging their tail as the owner arrives at the home after work.
This is kind of a sweet experience in most cases, and Aussies often do this to show their affection to their owners.
So, it’s time to figure out the common causes and possible solutions for this matter.
- To react to high tones.
- To get your attention.
- When they want to make contact with other dogs.
- Sexual desire.
To react to high pitch tones.
This is one of the common reasons why most Aussies howl. But, don’t get me wrong. We are not talking about their extremely annoying barking.
Like other dogs, Aussies also have a clear awareness of some kind of unheard noises. In general, dogs can hear a significantly wider range of noises for long distances compared to humans.
Because of that, noises like,
- The high-pitched whistles.
- Baby crying noises
- To some dog training tools that can make high-pitched, inaudible noises. Often these tools can be used to adjust some bad behaviors of your dog.
Even though Aussies don’t have a high vocal range, they can be a mini version of a “Diva” (diva is a Latin word for female opera singers) in the house.
Although this behavior is kind of cute, often people find this trait as an obnoxious behavior. Especially, neighbors hate this, and you will receive loads of complaints about your Australian shepherd’s howling.
So, what should you do about this behavior? To be honest, you cannot do anything to solve it. But, avoiding high-pitched noise may help up to some extent since some noises are cannot avoided. Because it is just a typical trait that they don’t have proper control whatsoever.
Your Australian shepherd may howl to get your attention.
Aussies are attention seekers! You will find this type of howling quite often when you are engaged in something serious. What’s wrong with this is by giving your attention whenever they seek or beg could lead to an attention-seeking problem.
Of course, their attention will able to grab your attention. Suppose you are watching TV. He will start to howl or paw on you whenever it needed your attention.
We know Aussies are a kind of extremely active and energetic dog breed that requires sufficient exercise on a daily basis. Not meeting their daily exercise needs can lead to such problems.
So, your Aussie starts to howl and dance ahead of you to encourage yourself to play.
This howling behavior is not something you should necessarily worry about. Still, in some cases, you should have a proper awareness to prevent some unwanted behavioral problems or be annoying and so frustrating in the future.
When they want to make contact with other dogs.
The origin of dogs dates back to about 15,000 years ago. But they were not dogs then. They were wolves. So, wolf genes are present in your dog as well as in other dogs.
Usually, Australian shepherd may be tempted to howl naturally as they feel bored and lonely. They do so to communicate with other dogs nearby them until someone stops them.
Suppose you are a farm owner and have several Australian shepherds as livestock guardians. So, these dogs tend to howl inform their location to other dogs. We can call it a telephone call between dogs.
Recommended reading: Do Australian shepherds good with chickens?
Your Australian shepherd may howl due to sexual desire.
In general, Aussies are naturally tempted to howl to get the attraction of female dogs. Of course, it’s not something unique behavior for Aussies. It is a natural phenomenon among dogs, and you don’t wanna worry too much about that.
When the time comes, your dog should be allowed to mate with a female dog. By doing so, You can prevent your dog from having unnecessary behavioral problems.
Abnormal reasons why some Australian shepherds howl.
Now you have a proper idea about common reasons why most Aussies tend to howl. But it is extremely important to look for unusual causes as a responsible owner. So, let’s figure out what are the unusual reasons.
- When they feel a danger of something.
- When the owner is away from the home or separation anxiety.
- To show an injury.
- Due to medical issues.
When they feel a danger of something.
Of course, your Aussie’s howling and screaming can be a little bit annoying in some cases. It can be a huge benefit too. If any case, an intruder enters your garden in the middle of the night, he will start to bark and howl to alert you without a second thought.
The same situation can happen if someone walking along the road at midnight. Your Aussie will start to howl and scream to give a signal to other unknown dogs. The meaning of that signal is something like “be ready, guys.”
Suppose your Aussie sleeps with you in the house, and what will feel you if he starts screaming in the middle of the night? Believe me, it’s so frustrating, and It can even make you even angry.
If you own an Aussie, I can assure you that you will most likely have to get up in the middle of the night since they are vigilant dogs, and they can feel even a minimal noise.
So, it’s necessary to train your dog not to howl in the middle of the night or teach a specific command to be quiet. Stick with the article. I’m gonna explain it to you before the end of this article.
When the owner is away from the home or separation anxiety.
This is one of the main reasons why most Australian shepherds tend to howl during the day. If you are kind of a person who has a busy schedule, you might stay away from home for most of the day.
This adverse condition can lead to psychological problems such as separation anxiety. So, often howling and screaming can be a counter output of these psychological problems.
We can understand this by looking at Aussies by considering their ancestors. As we discussed earlier, their ancestors are wolves. They howled when they missed a member of their pack to inform the missing member of the direction.
But they are wolves. Here we can consider you as one of his pack members. That’s one of the main reasons most Aussies used to howl when their owners were away from home.
This also could happen due to separation anxiety. But, how can you confirm if your Aussie suffers from separation anxiety? Usually, dogs that suffer from separation anxiety tend to exhibit the following symptoms.
- Urinating and Defecating
- howling and barking
- Chewing shoes and furniture.
In fact, you can do a simple activity to confirm it. Next time when you go for a late-night movie or dinner, I need you to stay for a while near your house and listen carefully quietly.
If your Aussie suffering from separation anxiety, you will hear small recognizable whining and howling from your Aussie. What happened here is your Aussie missed you so much, and he is trying to call you back the same as their ancestors did back then.
Your Australian shepherd may howl to show an injury.
Usually, humans are naturally tempted to cry when they hurt. Not much difference when it comes to dogs. Aussies also scream to relieve their pain from an injury.
We know that Aussies are extremely smart dogs, and they are smart enough to look at your face and bark or howl just to inform you about its injury.
Due to medical issues.
If your Aussie starts to act abnormally, whining, howling, and trying to hide in dark places, probably your dog needs medical attention. Same as other dogs, Australian shepherds also howl and cry as they feel pain in a situation sickness or injury.
So, if you experience such a situation from your Aussie, quickly check if there any visible wounds or injuries. Even if you unable to find it, you need to bring him to consult a veterinarian.
How To Deal With Excessive Howling of your Aussie?
As we discussed so far, Australian shepherds tend to howl due to both normal and abnormal reasons. It doesn’t matter what the reason is, you will receive loads of complaints from the neighbors. In fact, you may don’t have a good night’s sleep due to this excessive howling.
So, it’s really important to train your Aussie to stop its unnecessary howling. It’s time to figure out how you can do that.
First, you should make sure if your Aussie doesn’t have separation anxiety. If you figure out that your Aussie has separated anxiety, you got to spend more time with him.
Take this seriously, guys. Because separation anxiety is not an easy thing. It’s a somewhat challenging thing to deal with.
Don’t ignore them. It’s extremely important to give your attention as much as you can. So, you got to stay home and spend some quality time with your dog. Engaging in a game like play fetch with your Australian shepherd would help him eliminate separation anxiety.
Going for a nice walk with your Aussie is an excellent way to spend some quality time.
In fact, providing dog toys and chewing toys also a suitable method.
If your Australian shepherd is used to howl as a behavioral problem, you have to practice the “Quite” command. That means you have to get its attention whenever he attempted to howl.
Show its favorite toy, or tasty puppy treats in order to take its attention. Just show the reward and say “Quite.” If he stops howling, give the toy or puppy treat and say “good boy” or “good girl” and reward him.
So, it’s better to stay consistent with this exercise. Over time, you will get better results.
But, you should make sure that your Aussie won’t howl by being food motivated during the training.
Recommended reading: How high can an Australian shepherd jump?
Most people love to own these affectionate, lovable, devoted, protective furry friends. A delicate howling can make them even cuddlier. Besides typical reasons that most dogs are tempted to howl, Australian players will also howl for unusual reasons. So, this whole article is entirely dedicated, for that matter. I hope you found it helpful. Have a nice day!