Problem barking and unwanted noise can be a real issue for any dog owner, and some breeds are more likely to be vocal than others. If you are thinking of raising a Greyhound you will want to know, do Greyhounds bark a lot?
Each individual is different, but Greyhounds are not known to be overly vocal dogs. Some Greyhounds will make more noise than others, and this can usually be addressed with good training. There are many reasons why dogs bark, some of which are not always obvious, though it is unlikely that a Greyhound will make a lot of noise over nothing.
Excessive barking can be incredibly disruptive and is often a sign that your dog is not as happy and well-adjusted as they should be. This article will go into detail about the ways that Greyhounds are likely to bark, including common causes as well as some solutions so that you can understand how to keep your dog as quiet and calm as possible.
Do Greyhounds Bark a Lot More Than Other Dogs?
Some behaviors are more common in different breeds, and the tendency to bark often is one of them. There are many dogs that have been specifically bred to be vocal in order to protect their owners or warn of potential threats and dangers. Barking is a lot more common in herding dogs and guard dogs than it is in companion animals, for example.
Greyhounds do not have a history of guarding or protection, so they are not naturally very loud animals. They do not bark a lot, compared to some breeds, but they can still make noise when they need to, or if they have developed bad habits.
More often than not, a Greyhound that barks too readily and too often is the result of some improper training or external stimulus. Dogs use their bark to communicate, either with us or with others, but they can learn from you how to use it properly and when it is not appropriate.
Why Do Greyhounds Bark a Lot?
If you know the main causes of problem barking, it can be a lot easier to ensure that your dog doesn’t get into the habit. If you are already noticing a barking issue with your Greyhound, it is important to consider why it is happening before you think about how to address it.
Greyhounds can get into the habit of barking for many reasons, some of the most common of which are listed below.
They Are Anxious
Many dogs bark when they are scared or worried, and Greyhounds can be quite an anxious breed. You might notice more barking when something is frightening your dog, like a thunderstorm or fireworks, or it might happen when they are left on their own.
You want to develop confidence in your dog to help avoid anxious barking. It is important that a Greyhound gains some independence and a sense of security, even when they are by themselves, so you want to give them space at times. Your dog should understand that they can be safe when they are alone, even if something is worrying them.
They Are Bored
A lot of the noise that dogs make is because they have a lot of pent-up energy, and they are looking for an outlet. If your dog is not properly exercised or mentally stimulated throughout the day, you are likely to see a lot more challenging behavior and hear a lot more noise.
They Are Seeking Attention
At its core, barking is a means of communication, and dogs are often barking because they are trying to get your attention. Greyhounds can quickly learn that making noise is how they get you to rush over and pay attention to them, even if that is in the form of telling them off.
This is another reason why it is important to allow your dog to build up some confidence and independence, so they are less demanding of your attention and less dependent on you to feel secure.
There is an Outside Stimulus
Greyhounds have much better eyesight, hearing, and sense of smell than we do, so your dog may make noise in response to something that you haven’t even noticed. There may be animals outside, cars on the street, or even pedestrians walking past that your dog is reacting to.
They Are Excited
There are often particular things that excite a Greyhound and cause a vocal reaction. One of the most common times that dogs bark, for example, is when their owner comes home from work or the kids get back from school.
If you can identify what is causing your dog to make so much noise, it is a lot easier to start to address it.
How Do I Make Sure My Greyhound Doesn’t Bark?
Knowing the general reasons why Greyhounds might make noise, you can work to avoid this behavior from occurring in the first place. A healthy routine and good training will usually prevent a Greyhound from developing a barking habit. Some of the key things to keep in mind include:
- Lots of exercises. Greyhounds love to run around and get active. They should want to spend a lot of their indoor time relaxing and they will become noticeably noisier if they are not getting at least 45 minutes to an hour of dedicated exercise every day.
- A patient and calm attitude. If you are calm and consistent, your dog is much more likely to act the same way. Don’t yell at your dog or raise your voice as this only encourages them to copy you.
- Rewarding the right behavior. Positive praise is at the core of all good training, but don’t forget that any attention you give is a reward of some kind. Show your Greyhound that they get attention when they are well behaved and calm, not when they are making lots of noise.
- Mentally stimulating activities. Greyhounds need to keep their minds occupied throughout the day, not just their bodies, so they should be given lots of different things to do. Interactive toys, dedicated training, and fun games like hiding treats for them to find, are great ways to make sure your dog isn’t getting bored.
- Proper socialization. Often, dogs will bark at things when they don’t know other ways of communicating. Exposing your Greyhound to lots of different people and dogs while they are young will help them to learn more effectively, and less disruptive, ways of conversing with others.
How Do I Stop My Greyhound from Barking?
If you’ve managed to identify an individual cause of a Greyhound’s barking, you can start reducing this behavior through tailored training and lifestyle adjustments. For specific causes, you can try specific solutions, such as:
- If your dog is barking at animals, keep them away from the sights, sounds, and smells. Moving them to a different part of the house, blocking their view with a screen, or keeping them inside at key times, can reduce your dog’s awareness of outside animals.
- If your dog is barking when you come home, calm them down and distract them. React calmly when you enter the home, rather than building up their excitement, and offer them a favorite toy that will keep their attention. When they are quiet, you can then reward them with some extra love.
- If your dog is barking for your attention, ignore them. This is a tricky one for any owner but responding to barking in any way is encouraging the behavior. Try to ignore your dog unless they really need your attention, and reward them for communicating without barking.
Do Greyhounds Bark When Left Alone?
A common problem for many Greyhounds is one that your neighbors may notice more than you do. If your dog isn’t properly trained and confident enough to be on their own, they can develop separation anxiety and make a lot of noise whenever you aren’t around.
You should not leave your dog by themselves for extended periods of time unless you know that they will be calm and happy in your absence. You may need to employ a webcam and lots of trial runs before this is possible.
What Do You Do if Your Greyhound Still Barks?
If you’re trying your best, but your Greyhound is still making a lot of noise, you should talk to your vet to see if there are any medical problems that you need to address. They may also refer you to a veterinary behaviouralist who can help you to figure out the next steps.
Physical punishment and drastic measures like anti-barking collars or noisemakers are not the answer. No matter how “humane” the product may claim to be, punishing your dog for making noise is going to make them more anxious and frightened. You are unlikely to see a reduction in their barking and, even if you do, your dog is going to be less happy as a result.
The Verdict: Do Greyhounds Bark a Lot?
So, do Greyhounds bark a lot? The answer is no, they are not more prone to barking or issues with noise than other breeds.
Greyhounds may develop problems with barking due to improper training, an unhealthy lifestyle, or external stimuli that you may not be aware of. There are many different, simple solutions to problem barking, most of which are based on being patient and understanding your dog’s needs.
Barking is a natural part of any dog’s vocabulary, and there are many times when you will want to hear your dog’s voice. If your Greyhound is well cared for, and properly looked after, you can expect them to be a quiet and gentle companion almost all of the time.