The frequency range of human hearing is roughly 20 Hz to 20 kHz, while the frequency range in which speech sounds occur is roughly 250 Hz to 6 kHz.

We know dogs hear in a much higher and broader range of frequencies than humans (one figure suggests from the high 60 Hz range into the 40 to 60 kHz range). In what frequency range can dogs produce vocal noises of communicative value?

(I understand that canine vocalization is not speech and consequently dogs don’t necessarily have the same discriminatory ability in the same frequency bands as humans. I promise this isn’t a question premised on some odd misconception of how speech and hearing work.)

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    What's the betting that, after setting up all the equipment to measure this, anechoic room, wide-band calibrated mike, pre-amp, spectrum-analyser, computer for results etc,..... the test dog refuses to bark and just naps in front of the experimental team? Sep 4 '18 at 11:03

To answer your question about the frequency range of "vocal noises of communicative value", we would have to test not just what sounds the dogs make, but how other dogs interpret them. I'm not aware of anyone who's done exactly that. There are a number of studies on acoustic properties that carry information (e.g. Taylor,Reby, McComb. 2010. Size communication in domestic dog, Canis familiaris, growls. Animal Behaviour), but not on the upper frequency limit of communicative content.

Having said that, it's fairly clear from casual inspection of a lot of recordings that prominent variation in formants extends at least to 6 kHz, and probably beyond. Whether or not dogs attend to that, I don't know. Riede & Fitch wrote a useful study in 1999 in the Journal of Experimental Biology, Vocal tract length and acoustics of vocalization in the domestic dog (Canis familiaris).

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