New guinea singing dog with mouth open in a howl

New Guinea singing dog

Sing a song


giant panda



Pacific Islands Oceania

Pacific Islands

Endangered Status



2.4 to 3 feet
An average soccer ball is 8.65 inches tall.
Singing dog next to a soccer ball

Up to 18 inches tall at the shoulder.


New Guinea singing dogs eat small mammals, small reptiles, and birds.

mountain habitat


Singing dog sitting on a rock

Agile hunters

Singing dogs look like pet dogs, with their goldish red or black-and-tan coat with white markings. They have a narrow muzzle, petal-shaped ears, and wide cheekbones. Well adapted to hunting in steep areas with thick vegetation, the singing dog’s joints and spine are extremely flexible for a dog—they climb and jump like a cat!

Singing dog howling

Who's yodeling?

When it comes to sounds, these canids really have their own voice! Most of the singing dog's vocalizations are similar to that of the wolf, dingo, and domestic dog, but their howl is incredibly unique. Sonograms show the howl is similar to the song of the humpback whale! The singing dog’s howl sounds like a yodel, with the tones going up and down. And when in a group, one dog starts singing and others join in at different pitches, each with its own unique voice. Singers also whine, yelp, bark, and scream (a drawn-out yelp).

A pair of singing dog puppies play wrestling

Family life

Researchers believe that New Guinea singing dogs probably hunt alone and possibly defend a territory in mated pairs. Family groups live together, with both parents raising the puppies. Pups spend most of their day sleeping or playing. Playing reinforces social bonds and is great practice for future hunting expeditions.

New Guinea singing dogs live in Papua New Guinea.