TAGS: Dog Hearing

Canine Acoustics: How Well Can Dogs Hear?

14 Nov, 2023

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Have you ever been sitting at home and your dog starts to perk up their ears at the faintest of sounds or at a sound that you were unable to hear at all? While most people know that dogs have far better hearing than humans, the question most people have is by just how much? Prepare to be amazed by the auditory superpowers of your fur friend. In this article, we explore the amazing hearing capabilities of dogs, which are nothing short of extraordinary. We Also go through the 5 dog breeds that hear the best.

French bulldog dog breed

Decibels: What Is a Dog's Hearing Range?

Humans can capture sounds within a range of between 20 - 20,000 Hertz, while dogs can pick up frequencies as high as 65,000 Hertz! This extra range of hearing allows dogs to hear sounds that humans cannot hear at all. Dog Whistles emit a sound frequency of about 35,000 Hertz, which is why humans cannot detect it, but dogs can. From a survival standpoint, this extra range of hearing would help the dog's ancestors, wolves, pick up on even the faintest of sounds, such as the rustling of small prey within bushes.


Size and Shape of a Dog's Ears 

The physical appearance of a dog's ears also plays a huge role in their excellent sense of hearing. The large and often mobile ear pinna (the outer part of the ear) of dogs plays a crucial role in capturing and funnelling sound waves into the ear canal. The unique shapes and sizes of ear pinnae among different breeds are adaptations that enhance their ability to capture sounds from various directions. If we compare the size of our ears with dogs, our ears are tiny. The extra size of the ears allows dogs to capture more sound waves, which enables them to hear sounds more acutely than humans.


Mobile Ears and Independent Ear Movement

Dogs can move their ears independently, and they have more ear muscles than humans. This flexibility allows them to rotate their ears to focus on specific sounds, improving their ability to locate the source of a sound accurately. The agility of their ears serves as a natural amplifier for capturing and directing sounds. Similar to how we turn our ears toward a sound (our entire head, that is) when it is faint, dogs can turn their ears toward sounds that they hear. This is why your dog's ears start to move when there is a faint sound; they are directing their ears in the best possible direction to amplify the sounds they are hearing.


Top 5 Dogs That Hear the Best

5. Papillon

Papillon Dog Breed

Despite their small size, Papillons are known for their large, erect ears, which contribute to their excellent hearing. They are alert and responsive, making them quick to detect sounds in their environment.


4. Dachshund

Dachshund Dog Breed

Dachshunds, with their distinctive elongated bodies and ears, have a great sense of hearing. They were originally bred for hunting, and their acute hearing helped them locate prey underground.


3. Australian Shepherd

Australian Shepherds are known for their herding abilities and intelligence. Their ears, which can be either erect or semi-erect, contribute to their ability to detect and respond to auditory cues.


2. German Shepherd

German Shepherd Dog breed

German Shepherds are known for their intelligence and versatility in various roles, including police and military work. Their keen sense of hearing contributes to their effectiveness in tasks that require detection and alertness.


1. Bloodhound

Bloodhound Dog Breed

Bloodhounds are renowned for their exceptional sense of smell, but they also have excellent hearing. Their long, droopy ears help funnel scents to their nose, and they are capable of picking up faint sounds from extremely far distances.


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