You are likely sleeping or relaxing, and suddenly, you hear your dog barking like crazy. However, when you rush to your loyal companion to see what's up, you find yourself somewhat disappointed.
There's nothing there. Your dog's just staring out the window at nothing in particular.
Is your dog going crazy? Not likely.
Keep reading if you want to get to the bottom of why your dog barks at nothing. You'll likely find yourself surprised by the answer(s).
Throughout this article, we will better understand the root cause of why you find your dog barking at nothing. Afterward, we'll explore additional reasons why they may be doing so and some ways to get your dog to stop barking at nothing.
Related: Dog Guides
What Is the Root Cause of Why Dogs Bark at Nothing?
More than likely, the root cause of why dogs bark at nothing has to do with them reacting to something in the area that you can't see, smell, or hear.
It may have to do with your pup warning you of a potential intruder—human or critter—that you can't pick up with your senses.
Or, they may be barking because they want love and want to get your attention. Moreover, they could be communicating with other dogs. An excellent way to determine the cause of their barking is to listen to whether it sounds musical or eerie.
However, your dog could be communicating that they are hurting. So, if you find your dog continually barking and can't connect it to anything else, you may want to check on your canine's health. He may have something wrong inside or outside.
They may even be suffering from a brain disease, so it would be best if you paid attention to how your canine has been acting lately to see if it's an ailment or their superior senses.
Reasons Why Dogs Bark at Nothing
Now that we have a better understanding of why your dog may be barking at nothing, let's dive further into some additional causes as to why your dog barks at nothing.
These reasons mostly have to do with their senses and that they may be trying to communicate something.
Responding to Noises That You Cannot Hear
Along with their other senses, dogs have a superior sense of hearing. For instance, they can hear more higher-pitched sounds than any human. Moreover, they can listen to softer sounds that are further away.
Since they have more sensitive hearing, their barking may be in response to noises that are further away or higher pitched.
Dogs Can See What You Cannot
Dog's can see better at night than humans because they have a reflective layer behind their retinas. Because of this, they can see better in low-light environments and pick up critters or humans lurking in the shadows.
Dogs Have an Incredible Sense of Smell
Likely most people on this planet are aware that dogs have a fantastic sense of smell. They patrol airports to sniff out threats and also can help find missing people.
However, we're usually never told why they're such excellent sniffers. For one, they have more areas in their brain dedicated to differentiating odors. Moreover, they have more surface area on their noses that's meant to distinguish smells.
That's part of the reason why pups can smell things that we can't, which means they're likely to detect any potential threats way earlier than you.
Your Dog May Be Trying To Say Something
Maybe your dog just wants to talk. Whether it's to you or to another animal. They could be talking about their day, expressing their excitement about seeing another dog, warning you about an intruder, or something that may be wrong with your dog.
Is There a Way To Stop My Dog From Barking at Nothing?
By impulse, you may tell your dog to be quiet. However, that isn't the best way to go about getting your dog to stop barking at nothing.
The best way to go training your pup is to teach your dog a phrase to let them know it's time to stop barking. For example, you could choose words like "Okay" or "Good". You can choose whatever word you want.
Another way you can get your dog to stop barking is to reward them with a treat. For instance, you could hover a treat in front of your dog, and once they stop barking, you give it to them. From there, they will eventually realize that silence leads to treats.
Also, don't forget to weave your quiet word or phrase into your dog's training. For example, once you reward him with the treat, you could say something like "Okay".
However, you will want to change things later on to prevent them from abusing their newfound powers. For instance, you could wait for more extended periods to give them their treats.
Your Dog May Not Be Barking at “Nothing”
While it is easier to say that your dog is barking is nothing, that is not the scenario. Whether your pup's trying to communicate something or responding to sounds or scents that you cannot pick up, your fluffy companion is simply doing what they can to protect you and themselves.
If your dog continually barks at nothing has become too frequent and you feel like you are out of hope, thankfully, that's far from the truth. There are some methods out there to reduce how much your dog barks at nothing.
Here is a Way to Keep Your Dog Occupied
If you don't have enough time to train your dog or want to do so later on, you may want to consider a way to keep your dog occupied and not continually on the prowl for something to bark at.
Fortunately, there are solutions out there, such as Runball. Because of its thick yet safe to chew materials, it gives your dog(s) a way to let go of all of his stored energy. Some have even claimed that Runball wears out the most energetic dogs.
Are you looking for a great way to help your dog get the exercise it needs? Try Runball today!