There's a whole lotta talking going on!

Dogs and cats both have a unique way to communicate to each other or so we think. A bark and meow are a way for pets to talk to one another. Maybe. Or could it be a signal for something more telling? 

A dog’s bark…

What is behind a dog bark?  According to The Humane Society a dog’s bark can be a signal for a broad range of influences.  Whether they are vying for your attention or perhaps there is an underlying fear, they recommend a bit of detective work to better understand what your pooch is reacting to:

  1. Attention/Demand: Your dog may want to eat, go outside, or receive your undivided attention.
  2. Boredom/Frustration: Your dog may have been left outside day and night, or confined to one room for a long period of time.
  3. Fear: Your dog may be afraid of objects, people, places, other animals, or loud noises such as thunder and fireworks.
    Tip: Your dog's posture can tell you if he's barking out of fear. Typically his ears are back, and his tail is held low.
  4. Territoriality/Protectiveness: Your dog is barking in the presence of "intruders," which may include people and other dogs in adjacent yards.
    Tip: If your dog is being territorial, his posture appears threatening with his tail held high and his ears up and forward.
  5. Playfulness/Excitement: Your dog may be overly playful and excited when greeting people.
  6. Health Issues: Your dog may have Canine Cognitive Dysfunction or deafness, causing him to bark because he's unable to hear himself bark.


A cat’s meow…

Does your cat have a soft purr or a deep hiss?  It may be that your cat is lonely or even hungry.  WebMD Pets suggests that the following may be a few things to consider:     

  1. Illness: The first step is a thorough checkup by your veterinarian. Numerous diseases can cause a cat to feel hunger, thirst, or pain, all of which can lead to excessive meowing. Cats of all ages also can develop an overactive thyroid or kidney disease, both of which can result in excessive vocalizations.
  2. Attention: Despite what some people think, cats don’t like being alone a lot. Cats often meow to initiate play, petting, or to get you to talk to them. If you want to cut down on attention-seeking meows, stop responding when it happens.
  3. Wants food: Some cats meow every time someone walks in the kitchen, hoping to get a bite. And many cats become very vocal when it gets close to their feeding times.
  4. Greeting: Many cats meow when their owners come home, or even when they just meet them in the house.
  5. Lonely: If your pet spends too many hours a day alone.
  6. Stress: Cats that are experiencing stress often become more vocal. A new pet or baby, a move or changes to the home, an illness or the loss of a loved one can turn your cat into a talker.

What cues are your pets giving you?