Dog Training – Controlling Barking

Dog barking is a common irritant for many pet owners and their neighbors.

While barking is normal for dogs, just as making noise is normal for children, there comes a point when it becomes excessive and a major disturbance. While there are training collars to help with this problem, you should first try to find out why your dog is barking. Ask your neighbors what they witness when you are not home, and pay attention when you are to what is happening around your pet to start his barking. Dog behaviour barking may be easily identified and solved in many cases.

Your dog could simply be barking out of loneliness or boredom. This can also lead to dog digging. If you leave him alone for long periods of time, you may consider hiring someone to walk him or care for him when you are unable to. Make sure you spend plenty of time with him when you are home. Make sure he has plenty of toys to play with, and walk him at least twice a day. Especially with very active breeds, this exercise may be all he wants.

Dogs are extremely protective of their territory, so your pet may simply be responding to an intruder in his space, whether inside or out. Teach your dog a “quiet” command, and allow only three barks before you use this. If he continues to bark, distract him by squirting water at his mouth or squeaking one of his toys. Once he is quiet, praise him and reward him with a treat. You may also want to desensitize him to visitors and people walking past by having a friend gradually approach your home until he is accustomed to it and no longer barks. Spaying or neutering your dog may also decrease his territorial behaviour.

Barking may also arise from fear. If he’s barking because he’s afraid of something, try to desensitize him to the fearful stimulus. A veterinarian may also help with this. If the fear is from thunderstorms or other outside noises, try placing him in an area of the house where the sound is muted. Distract him with a television, radio, or some other continuous noise until he is calm.

Separation anxiety may be another reason for dog bark control. Again, a veterinarian may be able to help the most with this problem, but you can try counter-conditioning or desensitization. This is usually a problem when your dog is overly attached to you, is left alone for long periods of time, or has had a recent change of schedule. Puppies especially, get lonely when they are left alone, just like people do.

Dog bark training can often be accomplished without resorting to specialty collars by simply paying attention to the cause of the dog’s barking. If this does not work, then you may need a citronella training collar or electronic collar for dog barking control.

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