Many dog owners may wonder why their four-legged friend howls.

It is quite a commonly searched question, according to My Family Vets, with more than 2000 people asking Google each month.

Are they trying to tell you something, are they in pain? Wonder no longer because the experts at My Family Vets have the answer.

York Press: More than 2000 people a month google why do dogs howl?More than 2000 people a month google why do dogs howl? (Image: Getty Images)

Why do dogs howl?

Clinical Director at Bath Vet Group and Natures Vet in Somerset, Dave Tweedle, said howling for dogs was a way of communicating. 

He said: "Just like barking, dogs howl as a way of communicating.

"They do it to communicate with other dogs, with their owners and to join in with other sounds, such as sirens from police cars, ambulances etc.

"They can also do it when they are bored or lonely as a way of keeping themselves entertained."

Is it bad if my dog is howling?

Mr Tweedle added dogs can sometimes howl if they are feeling anxious.

He said: "If you’re not sure whether your dog is feeling anxious, have a look at their environment.

"Is something going on that may cause anxiety or stress?

"A dog barking outside for example, or something going on in the house like a big move of furniture or a lot of guests."

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To calm the dog down in this kind of situation the My Family Vets expert said to simply remove the cause of the anxiety.

What if my dog is howling or barking too much?

Howling, like barking can be an adorable sound, but Mr Tweedle said "you don’t want them doing it all of the time".

If you think your dog is howling too much there are ways of training the behaviour out of them. 

The My Family Vet expert said when doing so "use positive reinforcement and never, ever scold your dog for barking or howling". 

You can see more in depth methods for training your dog not to howl on the My Family Vets website.