Why do dogs vocalize during play?
Dogs resolve conflict through barking and growling. We may see it as aggression, however, it is a natural means of communication between dogs. Remember they cannot write a letter to the editor, go see a therapist or sue another dog or human.
Why is my dog barking and growling during play?
Dogs and puppies have to communicate. Just like people. We communicate through talking and dogs communicate through barking and growling. I am sure they think we make a lot of unnecessary noise and wonder if it is really needed. We have to see their communication as a means to let dogs and us know what they want or what is going on right now.
Vocalization does not always mean aggression. Many dogs growl as part of their play style. You can tell if the noises are becoming aggressive if they become low growls, the ears go back and the dog starts to stiffen up. Growling during play will usually have play bows, the dogs can turn their backs on each other and can easily be separated. As the dog owner, it is up to you to make sure to know your dog’s body language and be able to tell if they are playing or have had enough. Growling and vocalizations are allowed as long as everyone is comfortable with them and your dog is not getting overly aroused.