Barking is the way dogs communicate with their humans and with other animals. However, every dog, including pitbulls, is different when it comes to how much they bark.
Having a pitbull that barks a lot can cause a lot of concern especially if you live in an apartment building or a house with close neighbors but having a dog that doesn’t bark can be equally concerning if you don’t know the reason behind it.
So, why doesn’t my pitbull bark? The main reason your pitbull doesn’t bark is that it just has no reason to since dogs normally bark when they’re excited, want attention, or feel threatened. Other reasons for not barking include having a timid personality, proper socialization, hearing loss as well as other health issues.
Keep reading to learn more about what normally triggers Pitbulls to bark and why sometimes they don’t bark.
How Much Do Pitbulls Normally Bark?
Pitbulls are considered to be moderate barkers compared to other dog breeds. They are not the type of breed to bark all day long and with proper training, they will only bark when they believe they have a reason to.
However, there are exceptions as each dog is different and has its own unique personality. Some dogs can bark more excessively than what can be considered while others will not bark at all.
Genetics, age, training as well as various external factors can impact how vocal your pitbull is. So, you need to know when it’s normal for your dog to bark and when it’s normal not to.
Why Do Pitbulls Bark?
Barking is a way for dogs to communicate and respond to their surroundings. As mentioned before, properly trained and socialized pitbulls will not bark unless they have a good reason to.
So, let’s take a look at some of the reasons that might trigger your pitbull to bark more than usual:
They are feeling threatened or scared
Pitbulls might feel threatened or scared by many things including other dogs or strangers entering their territory as well as witnessing any type of violence. It all depends on how well they were socialized.
They will typically start barking as a defense mechanism to protect themselves against the threat. They will also start barking if they feel that the threat is coming toward their owner as they can be very protective.
They are feeling happy or excited
Sometimes pitbulls just cannot contain their happiness or excitement, and they feel a need to express themselves through barking.
So, it’s perfectly normal to see your pitbull barking more than usual when it sees you or when you’re playing together. Other things that might get your dog too excited include watching people walk by or hearing a knock on the door.
They are feeling lonely or bored
If your pitbull is used to having a certain amount of attention or doing activities most of the time, they will start to feel lonely or bored when they suddenly have nothing to do or no one to play with.
So, it’s perfectly normal for them to start barking just to occupy themselves or hear the sound of their own voice. This is sometimes referred to by new dog owners as whining, and you can learn more about it in my article on why are Pitbulls whiny here.
They are startled by an unexpected or loud noise
For a dog with a reputation for being tough and mean, pitbulls can be extremely sensitive to stimuli.
Unexpected or loud noises will normally startle them and cause them to feel threatened, so they will normally start barking to express their discomfort.
Some of the noises that can upset dogs are thunderstorms, cars honking, construction work, loud television as well as yelling and shouting.
Is It Normal for Pitbulls Not Bark?
Just as it is normal for pitbulls to bark in certain situations, it is also normal for them not to bark. There’s no cause for concern as long as you know the reason behind your dog’s behavior.
So, let’s take a look at some of the reasons why your pitbull doesn’t bark:
All dogs are different, and each one has its own personality. It is very much possible that your pitbull just has a quiet and timid personality. If your pitbull is more relaxed or shy, it will be less likely to bark.
It’s also possible that your pitbull just needs some time to get comfortable being around you. They will eventually break out of their timid nature and start being chipper and more vocal.
Training and Socialization
Pitbulls that are properly trained and socialized, will bark less than those who aren’t. That is because these dogs have a good understanding of boundaries and perceive fewer things as threats.
If you have an older pitbull, it’s very likely to be suffering from weak hearing or complete hearing loss.
Dogs normally bark as a reaction to stimuli from their surroundings, so hearing fewer noises will cause them to react less and therefore bark less
If your dog is not very old and still has weak hearing, it’s best to take it to a vet to check if they have any other health issues.
Other Health Issues
If your pitbull suddenly stops barking, it could be an indicator of some health problems
It’s possible that your pitbull does not have the stamina to bark. So, if you notice that your pitbull is quiet and less energetic than they normally are, they might be seriously sick and it’s essential that you take them to the vet as soon as possible. It’s also possible that your pitbull has developed laryngitis or throat problems.
What to Do If Your Pitbull Is Not Barking?
Your dog not barking doesn’t always mean that there’s something to be concerned about and you usually won’t have to do anything to get the dog to bark.
The first thing you need to do if your pitbull has suddenly stopped barking is to make sure it isn’t because of a health problem.
Once you take your pitbull to a vet and rule out the possibility of it being sick, all you need to do is give your dog some time.
If it’s recently been adopted, it will take some time to adjust to its new surroundings and become comfortable enough to communicate and express itself around you.
If you feel like your dog can’t communicate very well through barking, whether it’s because of its personality or age, then you can give it other ways to communicate. For example, you could tie a bell somewhere your dog has access to and train to paw at it so that it can let you know whenever it wants something.
You might be tempted to force your dog to bark by using physical measures, however, it’s highly recommended not to do that as it will only cause the dog to feel threatened and grow even quieter. It will also cause it to develop feelings of resentment towards you which might escalate to aggressive behavior and acting out.
At What Age Do Pitbulls Normally Start Being Vocal?
Pitbulls normally start being vocal when they’re 2 to 3 weeks of age. Their first attempt at communicating with their vocals will mostly be grunts and whines. When they reach 7 or 8 weeks of age, they will develop more into yips and barks. However, some dogs take until they’re 16 weeks of age to start barking fully
Is Excessive Barking a Sign of Aggression in Pitbulls?
Excessive barking is not normally a sign of aggression in pitbulls. If they feel threatened they will start barking loudly which can then escalate to aggressive behavior if the threat is not removed. It mainly depends on the situation that caused your dog to start barking.
What Is the Best to Get Your Pitbull to Stop Barking Excessively?
The best way to get your pitbull to stop barking excessively is to make sure they’re well trained and socialized. You need to understand what your dog is trying to communicate through barking and make sure it’s not constantly exposed to situations that might cause it to feel threatened and trigger it to bark.
What Is the Best Way to discipline A Pitbull?
The best way to discipline a pitbull is to use positive reinforcement. This tactic involves giving your dog a reward whenever it displays good behavior. The reward can be anything that motivates your dog such as treats, toys, or words of praise. It’s also best to avoid yelling at your dog or hitting as punishment for bad behavior.
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