How To Stop A Dog From Growling At Family Members

Keeping your dog from growling at family members is vital. If you’re not home, you wouldn’t want your pet to attack family members who are just visiting around the house.

Stop A Dog From Growling At Family Members

Getting a dog to stop growling at family members is not easy. It requires a lot of time and effort. However, if you work over this problem every day, you can solve it within weeks or even days.

In this brief guide, we’ll let you know why dogs growl at family members and what are the techniques and methods to prevent them from growling at family members.

Reasons Of Growling At A Family Member And Their Solutions

Most dogs growl and lunge at strangers, and it is a scary and upsetting experience for both humans and dogs.

Taking a step back, let’s first understand why most dogs growl at owners’ family members and what you can do to stop it.

Sometimes growling at family members is due to instinctual reactions, but it is unwanted behavior. Sometimes, the growling of a dog can be a message for playing.

Growling can also be dogs’ way of letting an owner know that they want to play with them or need their cuddles.

Occasionally, when a dog is with one family member and one more family member approaches, the dog starts growling and rushing to the coming person.

Here are all the possible reasons why your dog growls at your family members.

The Dog Doesn’t Feel Comfortable

One of the biggest reasons the dog growls on your family member is that your dog doesn’t feel comfortable with that person.

The American Humane Association’s survey of pet owners revealed that around half of all dogs growl or snap at unfamiliar people, which is a natural behavior when an animal is not comfortable with a person.

The average dog owner hears growling and snaps in their household ten times a day, and most of the growling or barking is related to humans.

It can be highly stressful for your dog when he doesn’t feel among friends.


The other most important reason for your dog’s growling at your family member can be aggressiveness towards him/her.

Sometimes the dog may become attached to the person who feeds or takes the dog out for a walk. The dog loves that person.

The dog may growl at other family members when another person comes close to the dog owner because the dog has to protect their master. However, aggression in a dog can be of different types.

It can be defensive, conflict, food guarding, possessive, etc.

How To Stop A Dog From Growling At Family Members


Another significant reason for your dog’s growling at your family member is moodiness. Sometimes the dog is not mood to play or does not like sticking to people.

Ultimately, to get rid of people, the dog may growl or bark at your family members.


The dog may bark at your friends and family members because they may feel afraid of that person. A dog has a sharp memory.

The person may have punished the dog someday. And the dog has memorized that moment. So whenever the person approaches, the dog may start growling at the person.

How To Stop A Dog From Growling At Family Members?

Now that we’ve discussed the reasons why your dog growls at your family members, here are a few tips for stopping your dog from growling.


You should never, ever, ever yell at a dog, no matter how bad the dog’s behavior. A dog who growls at someone may feel threatened, or it may not.

It doesn’t matter to the dog. All the dog knows is, “I am afraid,” and, “You are threatening me.”

Love is the therapy for all problems. If your dog growls at someone, the only solution is to show love to your pet. Just showing love will make your dog less aggressive.

You can start this practice by playing with or petting the growling/angry dog when it growls out of control. An incredible love can return any negative behavior with positive affectivity.

Many expert dog trainers even recommend that if a dog growls at a person, the first thing to do is to stay gentle towards the dog.

Feed The Dog And Take It Out For A Walk

If the dog bites or growls at any person, the important thing a person should do is to make kindful gestures to the dog.

The person upon which the dog growls must stay humble to the pet. Feed it and also take the pet on a walk to some park. Of course, this kind gesture will help soften your pet’s heart.

You may also ask your family members to offer your dog some treats to form a bond and encourage him not to growl at them.

Stay Away From The Dog When It Ss Eating

Some dogs are very possessive of their food. They don’t like anyone coming close to them or their meal when it is eating time.

Barking is a dog’s instinctive action to protect his territory and food. So, if you want your dog not to bark at family members, request your family members not to approach him while he is eating.


Yes! The dogs are very protective of their homes. When any stranger comes to the dog’s territory, he may growl or bark at that person as a precaution that the land belongs to him.

If you have a separate house or room for your dog, I suggest that when the dog is in its rest mood, don’t come close to the territory uninvited.

Train him gradually but with mini-steps. Let your dog get familiar with your family members first.

Next, when he gets accustomed to their presence, train him not to growl or bark when someone enters his room by treating him.

Hire A Trainer

If your dog still does not respond to the above-mentioned methods and you’re unsuccessful with whatever training options you’ve tried, consider consulting an expert dog trainer, or perhaps enrolling your dog in obedience classes with someone who has experience dealing with growling dogs.

Behavior problems like growling at family members are very common in dogs and can be solved with proper training.

The Takeaway

A dog that isn’t well trained will growl or bark at strangers even if they’re your family members. But dogs can be trained to accept and get comfortable with them.

Whenever your dog seems to growl randomly, just wait until the circumstances change so that he can stop. Keep in mind that it takes time to train a dog, so all parties must demonstrate patience. It includes you.

Everyone in the household must understand what they are supposed to do when the dog starts growling at them. They should know how to leave or not disturb the dog to try and reduce inappropriate growling habits.