Have you ever howled at your dog in hopes that he would lift his head and howl back? If so, you're not alone. Some breeds are more prone to howling than others, like Huskies and hounds. While it may be easier to train these breeds to howl, you can learn how to make a dog howl no matter what size or breed they are.
Wild dogs use howling for a number of reasons, including:
- communicating with their pack
- protecting their territory
- pack bonding
- as an alert signal
- when they are in distress
Our dogs aren't howlers, as you'll notice in my video guide above. If your dog doesn't howl on his own from time to time, it's going to take longer to get him to howl on command. If your dog is more apt to howl once in a while, it should be pretty easy to learn how to make a dog howl.
How to Make a Dog Howl on Command
Quite often a dog will howl if stimulated in one way or another. For some dogs, listening to other dogs howl will do the trick. Sirens are also another common sound that will encourage a dog to howl. You could even try howling yourself.
Through a bit of trial and error, you should be able to find a sound that will entice your pup to howl. When you find a triggering sound, allow your dog to listen and howl for a few minutes.
Do this multiple times per day for the first few days. Each time you play the triggering sound give a verbal command like “howl.” After your dog howls, give him a reward. This could be a food reward or some physical affection.
Continue this pattern for many days. You'll need to do it multiple times per day in order for your dog to grasp the concept of howling on command as quickly as possible. Gradually begin shutting off the triggering sound when your dog starts to howl.
If he stops howling as soon as the sound turns off, do not reward him. Play the sound again and leave it on while he howls. Reward him after he howls. This is a sign that you need to slow down the process of learning how to make a dog howl.
When you are able to turn the triggering sound off and your dog continues to howl, you know you're making progress. Now, try giving the “howl” command and delaying the triggering sound by a few seconds. Hopefully your dog will begin howling before he hears the sound.
Take things slowly and have a lot of patience. Be sure to reward your dog for a job well done. As I said, some dogs will learn how to howl on command more quickly than others. As long as your dog is making progress, you just have to stick with it. He will grasp the concept soon enough, and you'll be able to show all of your friends the cool new trick your pup can do!