Despite their loveable lap dog tendencies, the Dachshund is an accomplished hunting dog. And as a member of the hound community of dogs, howling is pretty much in their bones, so if you’re wondering why your Dachshund howls so much, we’ve got answers!
This article will discuss why Dachshunds love to howl, when howling may be a sign that something may be wrong, and how you can help quiet your vocal pup if her howling is getting out of control.
Howling Is An Instinctive Dachshund Behavior
All dogs can trace their ancestry back to wolves. And although they may not much look like a wolf, the Dachshund still exhibits many wolf-like behaviors. One of which is, you guessed it, howling.
Howling is, and was, used by wolves to communicate with one another. It allows them to announce their presence to other wolves.
In the case of your Doxie, she may be howling to keep you informed about where she is.
Bred in Germany for their hunting skills, howling is a common trait amongst hound breeds.
Howling on a hunt indicates your Dachshund is in pursuit or close to apprehending her prey. Dachshunds will also howl if they have something treed or cornered to let their human pals know they’ve got a prize for them.
Howling Because Of Separation Anxiety
Your Doxie is a loving, loyal pal, and some of them experience high separation anxiety when you leave the house. If your neighbor is complaining about your baby howling all day long while you are at work, she may be feeling anxious.
Because separation anxiety is a nervousness problem, you may find your Doxie acting out in other ways, such as destroying furniture or peeing on the carpet.
One sure way to help with separation anxiety is to work on kennel training your Dachshund. Kennel training is especially effective if you start from when she is a puppy. But any dog can be kennel trained.
Dogs instinctively love the cave-like environment that a kennel provides. She feels safe and secure in her kennel. Throw in a favorite chew toy and a blanket, and she will feel secure and calm for hours.
If you don’t want to kennel train, consider putting your Doxie in a smaller enclosed area in your home while you are gone, providing her with a bed and some favorite toys.
Howling Out Of Boredom
Dachshunds are a very clever and highly intelligent breed. Unfortunately, this means they will bore very easily. Boredom leads to excessive howling and other destructive behaviors.
Despite their short stature, these little dogs are high energy which means you need to provide them with adequate exercise. Tired dogs are good dogs.
Make sure to take your Doxie out for a couple of good walks every day or play fetch with her to get her running. She’ll love the attention and won’t have nearly as much energy to howl.
Howling Out Of Loneliness
If your Dachshund is left alone for long periods of time or left alone outside, her howling is most likely out of loneliness.
Dogs do not like to be without their pack. The pack provides them with a sense of security and companionship. Howling is her way of expressing her sadness at being alone.
If your Dachshund seems to be howling because of unfamiliar noises or people, you may need to do some training and socialization.
Socialization just means familiarization. Getting your Doxie pal used to whatever is causing the howling.
Take your Dachshund out to parks and busy places where there is a lot of noise, people, and other dogs. The more she is exposed to the world, the less frightening it will seem to her. Have lots of guests come over too to get her used to strangers in the house.
Training Example: Desensitize Your Doxie to Sounds That Scare Her
- Begin by exposing your doxie to low levels of the noise that scares her, like a video of police sirens.
- Slowly increase the volume just as long as your Doxie isn’t acting fearful.
- Give her treats to reward her for not howling.
- Leave the sound on for longer periods, slowly increasing the volume until she no longer reacts to it at all.
Incompatible Behavior Training
Incompatible behavior training is an excellent training method when you are trying to discourage a behavior. Essentially, you are diverting your pooch’s attention from whatever is causing the howling. When you get her to do something else, she can’t howl.
Training Example: Your Dachshund Howls When a Guest Comes Over
- Have a friend knock at your front door.
- When your dachshund starts to howl, tell her to lay in her bed and give her a treat when she obeys.
- Once your Doxie learns to go to her bed when someone knocks, have them open the door and continue with the same training until she stays quietly in her bed when the door is open.
- Give your baby a treat every time she goes to her bed and remains quietly when a guest comes over; add in little changes like having your guest ring the doorbell.
Barking or howling due to an injury usually has a different quality to it, more whiny, high-pitched, and frightened sounding. If you can’t seem to put your finger on why your Dachshund is howling, you should consider a possible health problem.
Run your hands over her body and see if you can find any lumps or tender places. Take her to the vet if you aren’t sure if there is a health problem or not.
Howling is a very normal Dachshund behavior. The hound family, in general, is bred to howl to alert their humans when prey is located or cornered. Now used less for hunting badgers, this howling instinct may express itself in different ways.
However, some of these howling behaviors may become undesirable if your Doxie is bothering the neighbors while you are gone at work all day. There are lots of things you can do to correct unwanted howling, including working with a dog trainer for the really tough case!