Decibel Levels of Dog Barking – Loudly Unhealthy.

Dog Barking – An over-unpleasant noise pollution, in dBs

Dog Barking - Sound level in decibel dB
Dog barking is quite a loud problem. The table below presents the Sound Pressure Level in decibel dB caused by some common sources, as well as a few not that usual. In other words, we demonstrate the high intensity of noise that canines produce.

Included are also a few noise limits when psychological and even physical harm start to occur in humans.

Beyond that, we include some of the loudest sounds that ever happened on Earth.

Don’t forget to pay special attention to the level of noise that barking dogs generate, specially a large dog. Dog barking is more than just loud, it is health damaging.

The list of the noise level of major sources… and dog barking.


Sound Pressure Level (dB)

Threat Level

Threshold of Hearing Confortable
Quietest audible sound for persons with excellent hearing under laboratory conditions 0
Quietest audible sound for persons under
normal conditions
Virtual silence
Human Breath
Rustling leaves
Quiet room
Watch Ticking
Rural Ambient
Noticeably Quiet – Voice, soft whisper
Quiet whisper (1 m)
Room in a quiet dwelling at midnight Broadcast Studio
Quiet Home Voice, low
Small electric clock
Private office
Bird singing
Ambient wilderness
Agricultural land
Distraction when learning or
during concentration can occur
Quiet street
Quiet office
Average home
Room with window air conditioner
Loud – Unusual Background, Voice conversation 1 m The human body starts to suffer the impacts of noise
Noisy home
Average office
Moderate to High risk of heart circulation disease at constant impact can occur 65
Loud – Voice conversation 0.3 m Start of noise epidemics
Inside a car
Outside a car (15 m)
Vacuum cleaner (3 m)
Freight train (30 m)
Toilet flushing
Noisy office
Loud singing 75
Loud – Intolerable for Phone Use
Automobile (10 m)
Pneumatic tools (15 m)
Buses, trucks, motorcycles (15 m)
Road with busy traffic
Alarm clock
Over a duration of 40 hours a week hearing damage can occur
Motorcycle (10 m) 88
Food blender (1 m)
Jackhammer (15 m)
Bulldozer (15 m)
Noisy factory
Heavy diesel vehicle
Heavy city traffic
Airplane cabin at normal flight
Subway (inside) 94
Very Loud
» Large dog bark (10 m)
Diesel truck (10 m)
Motor horns at distance of 7 m
Car at highway speed
Loud street noise
Lawn mower (1 m) 107
» Loudest barking by a single dog – World Record by the Guinness Book 113
Pneumatic riveter (1 m) 115
Threshold of Discomfort
Large aircraft (150 m overhead) Accelerating motorcycle
Blaring radio
Chainsaw (1 m)
Very noisy work – boilermakers workshop…
Deafening, Human pain limit
Amplified Hard Rock (2 m)
Siren (30 m)
Symphonic orchestra
Heavy thunder
Sonic boom
Small aircraft engine
» Loudest barking level produced by a group of dogs – World Record by the Guinness Book 124
Threshold of unbearable pain, above this fast-acting hearing damage in short action can occur
Jet plane (30 m)
Artillery fire (3 m)
Machine gun
Large pipe organ
Turbo propeller plane at take-off 140
Short exposure can cause hearing loss
Military jet take-off (30 meter) 150
Older military jet plane engine
Slap on the ear
Fire cracker explodes on shoulder
Small arms at a distance of 50cm (maximum level)
Pistol fired close to ear (maximum level) 180
Permanent hearing loss
Saturn Rocket* (At launch base) 200
Atomic Bomb* (1-Ton TNT Bomb, standing 250 feet away from the impact) 210
Earthquake* (At the underground epicenter of a 5.0 event in the Richter scale) 230-240
Tunguska Meteor* (Meteor crash at Krasnoyarsk Krai, Russia, on June 30, 1908, most likely caused by the air burst of a large meteoroid or comet fragment at an altitude of 5 to 10 kilometers (3–6 mi) above Earth’s surface. It was measured with the similar impact of a 1000-Mega-ton bomb. This is often considered to be the loudest single-event in history. 300-315

These extremely high sound pressure levels would break all measurement microphones and other equipment as well as completely torn human beings apart when they are close to those sounds. No hearing protection (ear muffs or ear plugs) can help a person there, for obvious reasons, since they would be dead anyway. These unimaginable sound levels will never be measured but only estimated or calculated.

What is the difference in the ‘Amount’ of Sound?

Decibel dB is measured in a logarithmic scale, whereas an increase of (added) just 6dB equals to twice (2X) the “amount” of sound.

As an example, the difference from the ambient noise in a Quiet Room (20dB) to the noise of a Large Dog Bark (100dB) is ‘just’ 80dB. However, the sound level is actually over 10.000 (ten thousand) times stronger! Visualizing in numbers, it is:

20dB → 100dB = 80dB => 10.000x

That’s why normal people get subtly startled — even to a point of leaping off a chair — when, for example, reading a book or working on the computer and then a loud noise abruptly interrupts our private lives, like a dog barking next door. Not to mention when a baby is sleeping in the middle of the night.

How much Noise can a human bear, constantly?

The maximum sound exposure recommended by OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Act – USA) is an average of 85dB during 8 hours. Exposures at or above this level are hazardous, so a person can contract hearing and even health problems, from temporary to permanent.

Some exposures to sound, even for a short duration, can and do cause permanent hearing loss, as you could see above.

Speech Level

As a reference, here are the SPLs for two persons talking (not shouting) at various differences (level at the receiver’s ear):


    0,25m      0,5m         1m       1,5m         2m         3m
70-76dB 65-71dB 58-64dB 55-61dB 52-58dB 50-56dB

We can notice the intensity of a human conversation is much, much lower than a normal barking. Dogs are then shouting out loud all the time they bark.

What are the differences among Noise and Sound?

In this article, for the ease of understanding, we used the words Sound and Noise most of the time as ones that give the same meaning. However, they provide quite different meanings. We have another article just for that, on the differences of Sound and Noise. Please take a look.

Why are dog’s noise or dog barking so annoying?

Dog barking is even more annoying than another source at the same dB level. The noise measured in dB is something a little different if you relate dogs and other sources. If a car and a dog each generates, let’s say 100dB , the annoyance generated by the dog would be greater and more uncomfortable.

Barking generates a physiological reaction in our body because humans have been conditioned for thousands of years to relate the sound of some animals as dangerous (lions, wolves…), so that humans could defend themselves, which allowed human evolution. This is proven in scientific research and we will write an article about it soon.

So, in our opinion, one should never “measure nuisance” from dogs in dB because it does not reflect the reality and intensity of the real problem.

In other words, laws against dogs which are based only on dB are also not adequate.

» Read more on the dangers of dog barking

WHO – World Health Organization – Data and statistics
OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Act – USA

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19 Responses to Decibel Levels of Dog Barking – Loudly Unhealthy.

  1. Puma says:

    Here’s something that will compliment this noise chart. It’ll help.

    Feel free to pop open the PDF and take a read. It will open your eyes as to what is really going on when exposed to barking for long periods of time.

    • MrMAD says:

      Thanks for the chart, Puma.

      I know that site, but not that chart. Still have to take a deep read of all the articles and information in there. Dr. Craig Mixon s the world authority in this field.

  2. Mcchesney says:

    I dive regularly so use ear plugs all the time. My most comfortable ones were custom molded from a kit, they are much more hygienic than foam ear plugs and don’t seem to wear out. It’s much less expensive than having your earplugs custom fitted by a professional; I’d recommend them to anybody who uses them regularly.

    • MrMAD says:

      Earplugs should not be used constantly. They usually cause ear infections. And they are not the sourc of the problem anyway.

      • KaD says:

        Why should someone have to wear earplugs because of dog barking? Shut your shitty dog up! Take proper care of it, train it so it understands it is not acceptable for it to bark incessantly or at every leaf that falls or at the neighbors when they’re out in THEIR back yard, and there won’t be a problem. Yes, dog can be TRAINED! Dog owners just have to get off their ass and their high horse and do it.

  3. 90spikachu Lover says:

    Uggh I can’t take that loud noise of barking! I feel like I get mini headaches when I hear them close to me. So annoying how do dog lover live like this & not be effected by the stupid noise!

    • Puma says:

      They have no intellect to disturb. One of KaD’s articles she posted on Dog Haters Unite addresses this cleanly. Those who are disturbed by noise easily have a very high intelligence than those who are not. If the intellect were to take a form, those disrupted by barking have a shining crystal with multiple, fascinating, interesting facets to study and explore. Those not disrupted by the barking have a dull, boring, everyday rock instead of a beautiful gemstone. I would head over to to see more articles about the all-around dangers of dogs.

      You have a gemstone instead of a rock. Preserve it. Join us in our fight to preserve and protect the intelligence gemstones everywhere, and the future health of generations to come.

  4. S. D. Martin says:

    I think that one of the main reasons dog barking is so annoying is because it’s a SHARP, STACCATO sound. You never know when the next burst of noise/barking will occur, and it sets your nerves on edge waiting for it, either consciously or subconsciously. You can “get used to” a loud CONTINUOUS noise–up to a point–but a dog bark just when you think/hope the damn thing has finally shut up starts the cycle all over again.

  5. R. D. Norman says:

    I have two inside dogs and have had a concern about what the barking does to my hearing, or will do to my hearing overtime. I know hearing protection will work, but you never know when the dog is going to bark. A lot of times you are unprepared. Therefore, it just happens without notice. Any thoughts on this? Is there a solution?

    • MrMAD says:

      Welcome to the blog, Norman.

      I have some info from my archives:

        The maximum permissible exposure time for continuous time-weighted average noise, according to NIOSH and the CDC (2002) is given by the table below. A rule of thumb is that for every 3 dB increase in sound (a 2-fold increase in energy) over 85dB, the permissible exposure time before possible damage can occur is cut in half. This is sometimes referred to as a “3 dB exchange rate”.
        dB Maximum exposure time
        85 8 hours
        88 4 hours
        91 2 hours
        94 1 hour
        97 30 minutes
        100 15 minutes
        103 7.5 minutes
        106 3.75 minutes
        109 112 seconds
        112 56 seconds
        115 28 seconds
        118 14 seconds
        121 7 seconds
        124 3.5 seconds
        127 1.8 seconds
        130 0.9 seconds

      The WHO World Health Organization considers 50dB to be the limit for a healthy environment. A home for example.

      The volume of a dog’s bark is at least 60 decibels and sometimes exceeds 100 decibels, which is enormously loud (the world record is 113.1 decibels by an Australian dog, poor neighbors).

      If the barking is frequent, it can become not just a nuisance for you and your family, as everyone nearby. It is a real and cumulative health hazard. You and your family may not get deaf right away but you will lose your hearing capacity day by day until you have to start using annoying, expensive hearing devices.

      Please note those are not the opinionated words from a person who does not like dogs, it’s from world renowned scientists and organizations.

      You ask if there is a solution. Well, there is: not to have dogs.

      Anyway, if you still want to keep your dogs, you may:
      – Use in-ear hear protection 24/7. And your family too (plus the neighbors, if they accept, what I doubt).
      – Train your dogs not to bark, ever. Lots of trainers charging good money for that, but no guarantees of ceasing barking.
      – Give them a debarking surgical procedure. Your veterinarian will be more than happy to take your money for that. Good news is that this works!

      Hope that helps. Really.

      • A dog’s bark can exceed over 105 decibels and the dog can maintain that for an extended period.

        Decibel levels are on a logarithmic scale, thus making contemplating noise levels in the abstract rather difficult. For example, 100 decibels is not 10% louder than 90, it is TWICE as loud…. 100% louder.

        • MrMAD says:

          Actually it is way more than that, AU.
          Depending on the type of decibel measurement, you just need 3 three dBs to double it.
          Like comparing to 90dB:
          93dB is 100% (2x) louder (than 90dB).
          96dB is 200% (4x) louder.
          99dB is 400% (8x) louder.
          102dB is 800 (16x) louder.

          In some variants they double at each 6dB but, anyway, for us what really matters is that barking is really LLLOOOUUUDDD!!!

          Some more info:

          • Most larger dogs bark at around 100dB.
          • We all know that dogs are capable of barking f o r e v e r! It’s not uncommon to hear reports of dogs barking for 3, 4, 5, 6… hours, almost non-stop. I know, I have.

          From the Guiness World of Records:

          • The loudest bark by a dog measured 113.1 dB and was produced by golden retriever Charlie, owned by Belinda Freebairn (Australia) during the Purina Bark in the Park event in Rymill Park, Adelaide, Australia, on 20 October 2012.
          • The loudest dog bark measured 124 dB and was produced by 76 dogs in an event organised by Petmate, in Washington Park, Colorado, US on 7 November 2009. The event was organise by Petmate, to help raise food for local dog rescure centres and promote their line of dog toys named ‘Dogzilla.’ Owners donated a tin of unopened dog food. The barking was measured by a calibrated type I SPL sound metre.

          Btw, did any one notice the names Purina and Petmate up there? Why do you think they are there?

          Does anyone here live close to a kennel?

  6. MartinN says:

    Want another tip?

    I saw one visitor here asking for a device to use when jogging to scare dogs and not let them to approach her. Well, maybe this could help. An online app for your smartphone. It’s an online dog whistle app that you download to your phone and when you feel in danger justturn your app on. Humans do not listen it at all!

    This is it:

    Did I say it’s free?

  7. MartinN says:

    Thanks for your article. Maybe this could help you. It’s not about barking but fits barking perfectly.

  8. Pat Vormwal says:

    Don’t forget the TWA – Time Weighted Average Noise Levels, that is a method of calculating the danger based on the intensity of the noise and the duration of exposure, e.g., the louder the noise, the shorter exposure is permitted.

    Dog people themself suffer the most even if they don’t realize this.

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