Why Do Dogs Huff When Excited?

Have you ever asked yourself, Why do dogs huff when excited? Usually, pups make huffing sounds when they:

  • Anticipate a reward
  • Are startled or surprised
  • Try to engage a human or another dog in play
  • Just want to express their excitement


Why Do Dogs Huff When Excited? Should I Worry?

As someone who has kept pooches for over four decades, I know that dogs can make many odd sounds. For example, pups growl, whine, and they even honk.

Still, for me, the huff (or the chuff) that doggies produce when they are happy is among the strangest noises I have heard.

So, today I will answer the question, Why do dogs huff when excited?


What Does Dog Huffing Sound Like?

Aside from being unusual, the huffing noise is also rare in dogs. Personally, I only learned that canines could make that sound after I got my second pooch.

Then again, my first pup was not a big fan of barking either. Still, I feel that I need to give you a brief description of the huff just in case you are not familiar with it.

Usually, dogs chuff with their mouths closed. When they do it, they often blow air through their lips. Other times, however, pooches huff with their mouth half-open.

As a result, they make a sound that is a mix between huffing and stifled barking.


So, Why Do Dogs Huff When Excited?

In my experience, there are several reasons dogs chuff when they feel happy or thrilled.

Fortunately, neither of them suggests a medical problem or some other issue.


They Are Waiting for Their Reward

Sometimes, our furry friends huff when they are anticipating something exciting. For instance, one of my pups makes that sound every time she follows one of my commands.

Since I give my pooch a treat when she rolls over or sits, she knows she will get a reward.

So, she ends up getting so enthusiastic after completing the command, that she starts huffing.

Dog Training Solution

What’s more, my dog will also chuff if I forget to give her the promised treat. When that is the case, she throws in a half bark too, as if she is trying to scold me.

Therefore, if your fluffy buddy is huffing, they are telling you they can’t wait to get their reward.


They Were Surprised or Startled

Over the years, I have learned that when their owner is happy, dogs are happy too.

I know my pooches believe in this motto because they start barking with excitement whenever I laugh loudly.

However, when they are sound asleep, my laughter can startle them. So much so that the doggies wake up huffing and looking confused.

If your pup chuffs when it is suddenly surprised by something, pet its back. By doing so, you will quickly calm your furry friend.


They Want a Play Buddy

Although dogs enjoy entertaining themselves by chasing their tail, they always prefer to play with a friend.

So, they often try to invite a human or another pup to join the fun by huffing. Usually, pooches combine the chuff with a bow to show they are not aggressive.

Therefore, when your canine friend is chuffing and bowing, it just wants you to be its playmate.


They Want to Show Their Excitement

In most cases, there is a really simple answer to the question Why do dogs huff when excited? With that sound, doggies may express their (drumroll) excitement.

For instance, I have an older dog that chuffs whenever I come home. I believe that is his way of saying, “I’m so happy to see you!”


Dogs Huff Not Only When They Are Excited

As you can see, doggies love chuffing when they are feeling enthusiastic and happy. However, this sound is not reserved only for positive emotions.

Some pooches use it to show that they are scared. In fact, my vet says many of her dog patients start chuffing as soon as they are brought into the clinic.

Also, doggies may huff when they are annoyed by something, like the neighbor’s nosy cat, for example.

In my experience, the huffing can even be a sign that your dog is feeling tired.

Unfortunately, the chuff can sometimes be a symptom of stress too. Typically, anxious dogs will huff and pant all at the same time.

So, if you catch your dog doing that, it may be a good idea to take it to the vet’s office.


To Conclude

Hopefully, I managed to provide a good answer to the question Why do dogs huff when excited? Clearly, huffing is just another sound in pups’ vocabulary.

Although doggies tend to make that noise when they are excited, they may also use it to show they are scared or annoyed.

For the most part, however, the behavior is not problematic.

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