Of all the sounds that wolves make it is the howl that they are most famous for. Wolves are also known to bark, yip, whimpers and growl. To the human ear the howl is the music of the wild. But to the wolves, the howl has many social functions although no one is completely sure why the wolves howl. Each wolf has their own identifying howl. It functions much as a fingerprint does to a human. It is also known that no two wolves howl on the same note either, but rather they howl in harmony most likly to sound like a bigger pack. Howling is also contagious because once a wolf starts howling, then others will join in.

But do they really howl at the Full Moon? There are many reasons noted that wolves may howl but as for howling at the Full Moon this is most likely a myth. It is true that that the brighter the night, the more active they become. Because the Full Moon is the brightest night of the month, it does appear that they purposefully howl then.

As for some of the other reasons they howl, it is known that the howl is the social glue for a wolf pack. It can be a call to locate a separated wolf's pack members. Other reasons might be that a wolf is simply happy or maybe just lonely and wanting companionship or looking for a mate. Wolf howls also are a rallying call right before a hunt for food. It can also be used as a way to warn away other packs from their territory. So there are many reasons that wolves might howl.

One thing that can't be debated though is the fact that it is indeed the main form of social communication in a wolf pack. The next time you hear the wolves howl take a moment to let your heart sing along with them - for it is the song of the wild that has been sung through the ages.

The following are examples of some of the different types of wolf howls:

A "Lonesome" Howl

A Pup Howl

A Confrontational Howl

A Chorus Howl

Responses to "Why do Wolves Howl at the Full Moon?"

  1. Anonymous says:

    wonderful wolves

  2. Anonymous says:

    One dog was going to have the speaker. The other 2 never even woke up.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Mine didn't like the confrontational howl...that got them very excited to go outside and see what was going on.

  4. Anonymous says:

    beautiful! :)

  5. Anonymous says:

    Some times even the howl of a desperate One goes down in the noise of nature, but the howl-repeating makes it all up . Listen carefully, hear the response ..... :)

  6. Anonymous says:

    great article and beautiful picture,I love wolves

  7. . says:

    SO COOL - love it!

  8. Anonymous says:

    I love the call of the "wild".

  9. Anonymous says:

    A Chorus Howl put my white shepherd to listen !

  10. Anonymous says:

    Wonderful wolves! We mustn't let them be murdered by Idaho ranchers.

  11. Anonymous says:

    sound like my wife after a skinful...still nice though!

  12. Ming Jo says:

    i love the wolf are u..?

  13. Anonymous says:

    Beautiful...Brings tears to my eyes and tugs at my heart strings.The pup sounds like the first time my Wolf/malamute Cody , howled....The lonsome howl sounds are like him as he got older....RIP my beautiful Cody,how I miss you...wado....

  14. Anonymous says:

    The most beautiful music to my ears is the call of the Wolves. It fills my heart and soul. Any human that is capable of taking a wolfs life is devoid of soul and conscience. Blessed are the Wolves <3

  15. Anonymous says:

    Wish we had wolves down here in Texas. Great recording of their howls.

  16. Anonymous says:


  17. Anonymous says:

    they are singing to each other. my puppy howls with me.

  18. Anonymous says:

    There are wolves in Texas. We had a den on our farm outside of Denton in North Texas when I was growing up. Unfortunately the human nature of progress has run them out. The last live one I saw was running along what is now a tollroad (121) in Lewisville. At that time there was still some undeveloped land with a creek running through.

  19. Anonymous says:

    beautiful Pictures.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Blessings to the fellow creatures, the wolves....

  21. Anonymous says:

    The lonesome howl actually made me cry.

  22. Anonymous says:

    I love no other sound like I do of the wolf song! Beautiful sound from one of the Creator's most beautiful creatures!

  23. Anonymous says:

    That was a beautiful recording of the song of the wolves. May they always be heard over the land.

  24. Anonymous says:

    I remember when I was a child laying in bed at night and listening to the wolves howl. It was a beautiful sound and at times a scary sound. Then they put a bounty on them and within a year there were no sounds. Their voices silent forever. Not another howl of a timber wolf was heard again! My child never got to hear their songs at night. What a shame this happened. I don't understand why people let this happen. To protect livestock? Bear, mountain lion, and domestic dogs have killed just as many if not more, but the war was waged on the wolves.

  25. Gale says:

    It is said that Maine coyotes are actually either interbred with wolves or are a subspecies that didn't get wiped out when wolves were "extirpated"(what a chillingly abstract name for slaughter) from the Northeast. But in either case we hear group howls like this now and then when a group comes through. Wonderful sound and such an privilege to still be able to hear it.

  26. Laura says:

    Loved the Recordings but My Cat Didn't ! LoL AaaaaaWwwwwwOooooo

  27. This is so amazing. thanks

  28. This is so amazing thank you .

  29. Anonymous says:

    How fantastic, thx

  30. Extremely fascinating, I don't have the privilege of hearing a "wolf chorus" However, many times I have the privilege of hearing "Coyote chorus" and it sounds similar to "wolf" but at a much higher pitch..sometimes sounding like "women screaming" in the woods. I will witness "Chorus calls" on the back side of my home, then moment's later, I hear response in front of my house. I love it when I get this opportunity to hear these howls once or twice a year. Wakes me up from my sleep every time around 3:00 AM..again love it.
    debbie millette

  31. Also, I would like to share something I read many years ago , not sure where, but I read that the word "Coyote" is a Native word meaning: "He that always returns", maybe somebody can shed the details on this for other's to read. And did our First Nation's Ancestors know what they were talking about, because with the deliberate government's intention's on extincting both Wolf and Coyote, They have returned on schedule, and now the government is at it again, One does not have to be First Nation, to know this is wrong, and it upset's the balance of nature, what kind of makeup does this European government continue to harbor?..Don't they get it yet? Are they that slow to learn?

    Peace and abundance of 4 legged Canine forever, both wild and domestic.


  32. Anonymous says:

    They sound so beautiful

  33. Anonymous says:

    My precious lab mix was at attention right away on the Lonesome howl! Then was VERY interested in the Pup howl!

  34. Sandy says:

    Love the howls of the wolves! When we had over camper sitting in northern Minnesota for several years there was a group of wolves that would howl in the morning and again in the evening. The group of about 12 lived on this ladies property and she would go out her door and give them a signal and they would all howl. Beautiful!!! I lived for those moments.

  35. Unknown says:

    had a chance ,few years ago to hear one,s lonesome call.It was haunting and beautiful..An experience i,ll never forget.

  36. Anonymous says:

    Cried through it but in a good way.. They touch my soul. Thank you.

  37. Anonymous says:

    I live in the Boreal Forest of Canada, and for me, to hear wolves howling at night, is just nature's symphony playing out.Beautiful sounds.Never hurts to join in.

  38. Anonymous says:

    Magical sounds!

  39. Unknown says:
    This comment has been removed by the author.
  40. Unknown says:

    I'll Hear All OF them Live ........In Sha ALLAH.....
    Pray For make this possible

  41. pilvikki says:

    love the sound of wolves in the forest and miss it!

  42. Anonymous says:

    Love this!! Music to my heart and soul

  43. Anonymous says:

    it wouldnt let me hear them

  44. Anonymous says:

    the most amazing and wonderful animals

    the most amazing and wonderful animals

  45. Anonymous says:

    Profitez de ce chant magnifique,car dans quelques annees ,les loups seront disparus de votre pays,!

  46. Anonymous says:

    die verschiedenen wolfs gesänge 1 a

  47. Unknown says:

    My pup loved it as much as I did

  48. Anonymous says:

    confrontational example sounds like my male wolf when the females are in heat.

  49. Unknown says:

    Absolutely magnificent - such beautiful animals. It hurts to hear how man is killing them - man is so ignorant and cruel against animals. They are truly a gift from God

  50. Anonymous says:

    I have a part Husky/wolf mix and he responded most to the Pup Howl, going right to my 10-year-old son to check on him. He also responded to the Lonesome Howl, coming to me and wagging his tail, licking my cheek. He did NOT like the Confrontational Howl, he immediately flattened his ears and raised his hackles. He wasn't particularly interested in the Chorus Howl, he merely laid down and calmly listened to it. My Lab puppy didn't respond to any of them, she just perked her ears up and stared at the computer wondering why it was howling.

  51. Sam "Waya" Andrews says:

    Beautiful...just beautiful...wolves in my opinion have the most beautiful voices in the world

  52. k80sy0 says:

    Such beautiful voices of wolfs, it sounds as if they are communicating so clearly to each other.

  53. Debra says:

    My cat woke up as I was playing these and immediately came and sat next to me to protect me when the "confrontational" call started. Smart kitty!

  54. Unknown says:

    lol! the chorus of wolves howling brought my ragdoll cat out from the bedroom at the back of the house! I love to listen to our wolves howl, I have some on my playlist on utube! I have to go listen to them every once in a while. what a beautiful sound.........

  55. Anonymous says:


  56. Anonymous says:

    It is music to my ears, I have a couple of "Nature" CDs which is set to soft music, natural woods sounds and the wolves howling throughout the CD. I love to turn it on and listen to it at times. It is actually soothing.

  57. Unknown says:

    Fantastic post! Thanks for your dedication to the wolves.

  58. Anonymous says:

    I love wolves...just beautiful!! when they look at you its as if they are looking into your soul.

  59. Anonymous says:

    Beautiful! It's like music to my ears.

  60. Anonymous says:

    I can't even put into words how much I love wolves

  61. Anonymous says:

    This is just beautiful. The wolves sing the song of nature that man is sometimes deaf to.

  62. Unknown says:

    so unique, so blissful

  63. Anonymous says:

    Yes. This is so unique and beautiful. How I wish men did not kill them :(

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