Rottweilers are a misunderstood breed. These lovable canines have a reputation for being violent and aggressive. While they do make excellent guard dogs, owners will tell you that Rotties are nothing more than loyal members of the family!
For the most part, Rotties are calm and quiet dogs. They're not as vocal as some other breeds, choosing a more stoic approach to situations. For this reason, barks tend to come as a surprise.
!If your dog is suddenly barking a lot, they could be trying to tell you something important
Even if those barks are becoming annoying, don't ignore them! Rottweilers choose their barks wisely. Any form of communication should be taken seriously.
So, what is your Rottie trying to say?
These dogs have several kinds of barks. Despite their relatively quiet nature, Rottweilers are quite expressive when they choose to speak.
Here are some common reasons why your dog is barking.
10 Common Reasons Why Rottweilers Bark
#1. Alerting You to a Problem
Rottweilers are very astute to their surroundings. Healthy dogs have an impeccable sense of hearing. As a result, they can often spot potential issues before you can!
Thanks to their intense loyalty, Rotties are more than ready to notify you of possible problems or intruders. Usually, this type of barking is rapid and continuous.
At this point, your dog knows that something is going on. It doesn't necessarily mean that there's something nefarious happening. But your dog has eyes and ears on it. So, they're trying to alert you so that you're prepared.
#2. Alerting You to a Potential Intruder
This bark is similar to the previous one. However, the difference is the potential for danger! You'll hear this bark whenever someone enters your property.
It sounds like rapid barking that's broken up by small pauses. Your dog is both alerting you to the problem and trying to keep tabs on the intruder. That's what the slight delays in barking are for!
#3. Greeting Barks
Does your dog bark at you whenever you come home after a long day at work? Chances are, it's a sharp and short bark that occurs once you enter the door.
It may even be accompanied by intense tail-wagging and some loving licks.
While the bark sounds intimidating at first, it's pretty innocent. It's just your dog's way of greeting you and saying, "Hello, welcome home!"
#4. Boredom Barks
If your dog is not getting enough exercise or play throughout the day, don't be surprised if you start hearing the boredom barks. They usually sound like short, mid-ranged barks. It's almost like your is stuttering.
The only way to address this issue is to spend some more time with your dog. Rotties are moderately active and require at least 20 minutes of exercise a day. Some will need more.
Even if they had their exercise fix, Rottweilers can quickly become bored throughout the day. You must find ways to keep them entertained and fulfilled. Otherwise, they might turn to destructive behaviors.
Consider taking longer walks or setting aside some time for rigorous play. When you're not home, provide a mental stimulation toy so that they can stay occupied and happy.
#5. Dominance Barks
Here's a type of bark you don't want to hear. It's a short and snappy bark that usually comes with some signs of annoyance.
This bark is your dog's way of telling you to stop what you're doing. It's their way of being domineering over you!
Obviously, dominating barks are a big no-no. You're the pack leader, so there should be no reason for your Rottie to try and take control. If you hear this bark frequently, consider getting help from a professional trainer or behavioral specialist.
Related: How to Deal with Aggression in Rottweilers
#6. Asking for Attention
Are you not spending enough time with your dog? Your pooch will let you know!
Despite their stoic and somewhat intimidating looks, Rotties need just as much love as the next dog! They thrive on human interaction. Without it, they can become depressed or start misbehaving.
Rottweilers aren't shy when it comes to asking for attention. You may hear repeated long barks with some quiet in the middle. Your pup is begging for your attention and waiting to see if you respond! These barks are unmistakable.
Pay a little more attention to your dog to put a stop to the barking. We don't recommend rewarding your dog with affection when they bark, as that would only create positive reinforcement.
But, you should try to show more love throughout the day to keep your pup's fragility in check!
#7. Excited Barks
Quick and short barks are often a sign of excitement. Typically, they sound a little higher pitched than usual.
Many dogs will express their enthusiasm for something through verbal communication. Rottweilers are no different!
Most owners hear these barks before going for a walk. They might come before a play session, too.
Related: Is a Dogs Sigh a form of Communication?
#8. Sudden Pain
Sudden, high-pitched yelps are often a sign that your dog is in pain. It doesn't necessarily mean that your dog needs immediate veterinary assistance.
Sometimes, the pain is sudden and quickly subsides. For example, they might have stepped on something sharp or bumped their head on a piece of furniture.
But if that yelping continues, go to an emergency vet! A series of yelps is a telltale sign that your dog is in severe pain.
Don't ignore them. Provide your dog care with professional care as soon as possible even if you can't see any signs of physical trouble.
#9. Surprised Barks
Catch your dog by surprise? Shocked Rottweilers often verbalize their dismay. It's a cute little bark that usually doesn't last long. You may hear a couple of barks in quick succession if your dog sees something they're not used to seeing.
It's their way of saying, "Check this out! What is it?"
Now, if these surprised barks happen frequently, you may be looking at an anxiety problem. Stress-out dogs tend to respond more to stimulants than relaxed ones.
If it persists, consider taking steps to ease your dog's worries. You can also go to a behavioralist or trainer for assistance.
#10. Affectionate Barks
Last but not least, we have the affectionate bark. Your dog doesn't have to be in pain or shock to express their feelings! Some will bark at you just to say they're having fun.
These barks occur most when playing. You might observe those barks when your dog interacts with others, too.
For example, many Rotties start to bark at the dog park when they're having a good time. While some mistake it for aggression, it's an innocent form of communication.
How to Identify Barks
Rottweilers are quite expressive when they want to be. While many of the barks are identifiable, it's not an exact science! There's no way to tell what your dog is trying to say for sure.
Your best bet is to pay attention to context clues.
When did the barking start? What triggered it?
You can look around and figure out precisely what it is they're barking at in most cases. Keep an eye on your pup's behavior, and take a look around!
If your dog is vigorously wagging their tail as you clip its leash on, it's likely a bark of excitement for the upcoming walk!
If your dog is standing still with their ears perked and the hair on their neck standing up, the culprit is probably something more nefarious!
Your dog's body language says a lot about what they're feeling. Use it to your advantage to figure out the cause of their barking and address the issue.
Putting an End to Incessant Barking
The easiest way to stop barking is to address the cause. However, taking the straightforward approach could backfire in the long run.
The last thing you want to do is reward incessant barking. Dropping everything to play with your dog whenever they want attention will do nothing but teach them that barking works!
To truly stop excessive barking, you must adjust your training. Many trainers specialize in barking. Typically, training involves ignoring your dog and providing positive reinforcement whenever they don't bark at you.
The process can be tricky, so we recommend going to a professional if you're unsure about your training abilities.
Rotties are intelligent creatures that pick up commands well. That said, you must be consistent and never reward the behavior. Otherwise, you're looking at a lifelong problem!
Understanding your dog's barks can make a world of difference. Dogs are complex creatures that try their best to communicate as efficiently as possible.
Knowing how to identify the causes of those barks can help you provide the best care possible while still maintaining your training.