When we think of howling, many of us often imagine wolves doing it under a full moon. It is no surprise then that one of the wolves’ direct descendants, Siberian Huskies, have inherited this trait. The husky breed is known for its howling, and often to the owner’s annoyance. However, it may be the opposite case for your husky, so you might be thinking, “Why won’t my husky howl?” There can be several reasons, and hopefully, we will be able to enlighten you on the possible causes, when howling begins to develop, and how you can get your husky to howl.
Howling grew from the need for wolves to communicate with each other. They used it to detect the location of other members in a pack, warn others of danger, and defend their territory. Nowadays, some dogs still do howl to communicate for different reasons. However, it is normal for a husky to both howl and not howl. Below are some of the reasons why they may not be howling.
Just like humans, not all huskies prefer to be so vocal. Quieter personality types also exist in the dog world, and they may just not feel a need to howl. In this case, it is possible that your husky likes to bark more than howl to communicate.
Due to the domestication of dogs, they no longer need to communicate with each other. In the modern lifestyle of a dog, they are highly dependent on humans to take care of their needs, which naturally has resulted in them not needing to be as vocal in their daily life.
If your husky has had a previous history with several owners, then it is likely that they were trained or experience something that caused them to stop howling.
Howling takes up a lot of energy. When a husky is sick or in pain, their main priority is to conserve that energy to heal. Other signs include decreased energy and loss of appetite. If you suspect that this is the case, consider bringing your dog to the veterinarian for them to be evaluated.
A lack of stimulation in a husky’s environment makes it less likely for them to howl. Taking your dog outside to exercise and keeping them active in general may encourage them to howl more.
Not all huskies howl. While they are more likely than other breeds to howl, lack of howling doesn’t necessarily mean that there is something wrong with your husky. Sometimes it is just in their genetics not to howl as much, and that is completely normal. If you would like to probe deeper, consider getting in contact with your husky’s original breeders. Your answer may lie in the parents. Perhaps your husky isn’t as vocal because one or both of their parents are also the same. If that is not the case, you can also try and figure out when the parents started howling to see if your husky is on the same track.
Because of their close relation to wolves, it is in the husky blood to howl. In other words, howling is instinctual and comes to them very naturally. Interestingly, huskies find it easier to howl than to bark. It all starts at about 2-3 weeks old, when they are just experiencing the world for the first time through sounds and sight. During this period, they are also able to grunt and whine. At 7-8 weeks old, they are able to make more distinct sounds such as barking and howling. But what prompts the howling? Do they just howl out of nowhere? Usually, puppies howl to draw your attention to something. At this stage in their life, they really only need the basic necessities. They are most likely howling because they are hungry, thirsty, lonely, or need to go poop and pee. When you hear them howl, make sure to pay close attention and address their needs. As they grow, dogs may continue to howl for more varied reasons.
If you have determined that your husky is not howling due to reasons that are not health-related, then there are strategies to get them to howl.
To encourage them to howl, you can try a few things. First, you can try howling yourself. Although you may not sound exactly like how a dog would, the idea is to get them familiar with what a howl is like. Along the same lines, you can even try to show videos of other dogs howling. There are thousands, if not millions, of videos of huskies howling on the Internet. Pulling up a video may give them the example they need to catch on to their natural instincts. Alternatively, owners have reported success with playing siren, alarm, crying, musical instrument, or whistling sounds. Make sure to reward them with a treat after each howl to encourage them further.
As with many things in life, time may help solve this problem. Whether your husky is still young or is in a new environment, they might need some time to adjust and perhaps grow into it. There is no particular time that a husky has to start howling. While it is common for them to howl as a puppy, that doesn’t mean every dog will. Otherwise, they might not just be ready yet for reasons you probably can’t control. In the meantime, spend as much time with him or her and keep them happy and healthy.
Lack of howling could indicate that there is something wrong with your husky, but it doesn’t always. If you have ruled out any medical issues, then it could be due to a variety of reasons, from their personality to genetics. Please be reassured that it is normal for your dog not to howl. In fact, howling has been rendered not as useful for modern-day dogs since they no longer need to communicate with each other. However, you can get them to howl by training them using various strategies.