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What are your opinions on growling?
Do you feel that if a dog is constantly corrected for growling, it is more likely to lash out without warning?

Reason I'm asking is because our rescue Ava growls outside at night. She doesn't do it when I watch her from the door, but only when I'm all the way outside with her. She's not growling at me. This is in the back yard. It's pretty dark in our back yard, so I'm not sure what's going on. We never have a problem during the day. This just got me to thinking about growling in general.
 

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Aggressive Female
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Elsa growls at strangers in the house, and after I invite them in and tell her "it's fine, go lay down", I don't expect any more growling. I tell her quiet, and if she ignores my command, I correct her for it with a leash and collar.

She also growls for nothing outside- so I usually go look, and if it's nothing I say "it's fine, go lay down" (same command), which she always listens to.

I think it's more personal preference, a lot of people hate growling, and a lot of people don't mind it. I don't mind it when it's the right circumstances, but after I say "quiet", I expect her to be.
 

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Scarlet growls only outside and at night when she is on full alert. It's not like a full growl, it's more of a "hhhhmmmm" mumbling sound before she is about to let out a big girl bark lol. She likes to just do a little patrolling around the yard on her last potty break at night and then comes right in. If she hears movement or anything could be a small animal or what have you, she lets out a bit of a growl as well. But then it's back to her bouncy self once I tell her "that's enough. let's go in."

Also happens when we are watching a dog show. It's not every dog on tv that makes her excited, but if a dog has more of a louder, protective bark is when she will bark back and growl a bit.

Im with Fitz.Kara on the circumstances. I didn't want a "quiet" dog, so I do expect my dog to alert me when new people are in the home, approaching or if something is out of the usual. But when I say "enough", it's to stop immediately and she should proceed with greeting them or leaving them alone, whatever she chooses.
 

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I agree. It depends on the circumstances and if the dog will stop growling when told to. I would NOT tolerate growling at myself or my kids, but otherwise, in some cases I don't mind it. If the dog is actively trying to protect the home or alerting me to something, I wouldn't mind as long as he stops when instructed to.
 

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joie de vivre
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I'm fine with growling. It's just one way dogs communicate.

Growling is never the problem anyway. The 'problem' (when there truly is one) is a bigger situation in which growling is a small part. What has led to the growling and/or what the growling could be a warning for is what the real issue is. I'd personally rather focus on that than just stopping some noise a dog makes because of shallow, arbitrary notions about said noise.

Cilffs notes version: I would never focus strictly on 'stopping the growling' so much as 'what is causing the growling?'
 

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Sometimes my dog makes a deep growling while walking slowly towards to the door. Then I am sure someone is standing behind the door or some animal is walking around. If I whisper "who is it?" my dog is going crazy, barking and growling. If I say nothing, the growling continues without barking and I am sure this is even worse for the intruders... dog takes time to think...
 

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I think that my dog is trying to freak me out with his growling at nothing. I got him because I am a chicken and wanted an intimidating dog to keep me safe. Meanwhile every time I am alone late at night he goes around growling at his reflection or at a shadow. His favorite thing is when I let him out in the dark he likes to disappear into the night and then sneak up behind me.
I agree with everyone else. It is fine to growl but once I check it out he needs to be quiet.
 

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Our dobe Amy will growl only for a particular reason...to alert me...and I will praise her.
She doesn't generally growl in the dark but I just noticed my sons little dog does, when I take him out for his bedtime pee-pee.

Seems like little Trevor growls at night to alert any/all midnight critters of his presence...form of "marking his territory".
My wife also can tell when he is going to have a sh*t, he growls and plants his feet for the big dump...nothing bad at night, is going to come up behind him..when he is in a defenseless mode...lol

Trevor growls outside at night...the 7 pounder, makes us laugh:

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I agree with Fitz also. She can growl but when I say "enough" she should stop whether it be inside or out. If I tell her to stop and she doesnt that is the only time I correct her. If we are in the backyard I let them do it for the most part unless they continue too long. They usually stop after a few barks and growls. I dont want to suppress all of it b/c I like them alerting. Dexter, my daughters terrier, does the same as Beaumont said. When I let him out when it is dark he runs across the yard to the far corner barking and growling. Then he stops. So if its really late or early in the morning I take him out on a leash so we dont disturb the neighbors. Yes, IMO you want them to show a warning sign more than just doing something.
 
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