Howling is a group activity
September 3, 2018
I was recently startled awake from a nightmare by the sound of howling. In my dream I was being stalked by wolves in the dark wilderness. I thought the howling was part of my dream. To my surprise, it was right outside the window, and it was a chorus of neighbor dogs.
I wondered why they were howling until I heard a faint siren in the distance.
Because dogs are descendants of wolves, they have an innate pack mentality. Howling allows wolves and dogs to communicate their location to the other members of their pack. This is a vital in the wilderness because an animal separated from their pack can easily perish.
So why do dogs howl at sirens? The high pitch peal of a siren might sound a lot like a howling animal to your dog. Dogs have no context for fire trucks or police sirens, so they interpret them as a howl. Once a dog starts howling, other dogs in the vicinity will chime in to communicate their location to the rest of the pack.
Some dogs will howl even though they recognize the siren isn't another animal. They do that to alert you because you are a de-facto member of their pack. In fact, their sense of obligation toward the alpha (their owner) is to make you aware of the situation. Dogs have incredible hearing compared to humans, so they are able to discern sounds we may miss.
Next time I hear howling, I'm going to smile because I know the dogs are just communicating and letting their friends know where they are.
Recommended Stories For You
IN NEED OF
Customers for the CAPS annual garage sale that will be held this Friday and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. inside at Oasis Community Church, 1520 S. Maine St.
Aluminum cans, which we recycle to augment our shelter funds. We are now able to pick up cans because our trailer has been fixed. If you have cans to pick up, call 775-423-7500.
SHOUT OUT TO
Pastor Bill Vaughn at Oasis Community Church for again allowing us to use their wonderful facilities for our garage sale. A Four Paws Salute to you!
Rema White for donating and working so hard on the wonderful table lamps for the Murder Mystery. You light up our life!
COME SEE US
CAPS will be at Walmart on Sept.15 with the Kissin' Booth and a puckered-up pooch. Come by to get your pooch smooch. We have colorful caps and shirts, so be sure to check out the merchandise after you have loved on our pup.
September: National Disaster Preparedness Month.
Flower Tree Nursery will again be raffling a 20-gallon tree on Sept. 15, and the winner doesn't have to be present to win. The raffle tickets are available at Flower Tree, and they are $1 for one ticket and $5 for six tickets.
SNAPS is a program offered to Churchill County residents through CAPS that provides low-cost spay/neutering for cats and dogs. To qualify for SNAPS, you need to have one of the following: Medicaid, a child enrolled in NV Check Up Program, food stamps, 2017 tax return stating income is less than $30,000 or Veterans disability card including a photo ID. Also required are a Churchill County ID and a co-pay. For more information, call CAPS at 423-7500.
CAPS' mailing address is P.O. Box 5128, Fallon, NV 89407. CAPS' phone number is 775-423-7500. CAPS' email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Please visit the CAPS website (www.capsnevada.com) and Facebook page (Churchill Animal Protection Society). Be sure to "Like" CAPS on Facebook because we are really likeable.
CAPS is open to the public on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Do you have questions, comments or a great story? Contact me, email@example.com.
Kathleen Williams-Miller is a CAPS volunteer.