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Thread: Growling

  1. #11


    Is there such thing as a playful growling?
    Hooch growls at us when we play and pull his toy out of his mouth or play tug-o-war... but as soon as we stop he asks for more and he never ever snaps at us... Is this a behaviour that needs stopping?
    We take it that he growls in a playful way... this is making wonder if there is such thing??

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Sunshine coast Qld


    Dogs do certainly make make a growly noises when playing... i know mine do, but its a happy playing type noise...not done along with the look when something happens they dont like like when a child steps on there foot or sits on them....thats different. You would sure know a threatning growl if you heard one.
    The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated.
    Mohandas Gandhi

  3. #13


    Thank you Cavalierqld!! I am still new to all this learning....

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2009


    Everything that follows a play-bow is "just pretend". So if my dog is playing - she sometimes growls, sometimes not but it's not a pre-bite warning. If you scold a dog for growling when it's upset, you risk teaching it to skip warning and go straight to biting.

    But with play and with warnings - you can still set limits on what is acceptable. A dog needs to know they have the option of walking away, and that's prefered to growling. And the child needs to know when to stop - and that's why you have to supervise children with dogs. You can't trust children. Time out or separation for both if they cross the line. Doesn't matter "who started it".

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    melbourne australia


    my dogs growl lots. it is not a sign of aggression, it means "im having great fun, lets keep going". To visitors who hear it for the first time, they are terrified. It doesnt sound pretty to those that dont understand. ie. it VERY noisy. And it happens every day, first and last thing at night in the spare room. then they collapse and sleep together.

    Are you sure this is a "enough, stop now or i will bite" type of growl?

  6. #16


    If you have watched a litter of pups playing, they will growl in play all the time. When one has had enough it goes off to corner and lies down. If a playfull pup still wants it to play it will pull a tail or an ear or a leg, still growling and if it gets to much for the one who wants to stop there will be a loader scuffle and then peace.

    This is a lesson they learn from each other and one of the reasons pups should never be taken away too early.

    Games of tug in our house can be very noisy and when two of them have a one on one tug'o war with a rope its mayhem - but all in fun.
    Nev Allen
    Border River Pet Resort

  7. #17


    our dog doesn't growl to our boy, but when she does growl when towards other human or animal I shush her
    kinda embarrassing cause I don't want to be labeled as bad owner nor she's a bad dog. Well anyway we're off
    to first one on one training with a trainer tonight

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Aug 2011


    Oh no it is definitely not a play growl. She does that too and I think it's cute. It's an impulsive "back off" growl.

    Maybe I should just make a point of sending her off the bed or wherever it happens when she does it, to give her the message that she should walk away before it gets too much?

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2012


    Interesting topic Rosie is 9 weeks old and when we are playing with her and she growls we stop playing and ignore her for 5 seconds. I always thought dogs have a play growl and a I am going to bite you growl. The play growling doesn't bother me but my husband hates it so we do the whole ignore thing. I think I will keep going with the no growl policy as it will be hard later to maybe gauge the signal between I am playing to I am getting the shits.

  10. #20


    Hmmm Hooch just started play growling. I thought it was funny and fun and kinda encouraged it. Hmm maybe I should stop it, I dont want it to develop into the other kind of growl.
    Thankyou for the topic. It is interesting and informative!

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