Expecting a dog not to bark is like expecting a child not to talk. Because barking is the way used by dogs to communicate. Believe me, your canine furry friends can make you go crazy by whining and barking to an extremity. Hence, to train him not to bark will require quite a hard work and a lot of patience.
Find a Cause Why Your Dog is Barking
A barking dog not just bothers you in your routine work but may also annoy all of your neighbors who might complain about the same to you each day. You can imagine how troublesome even a small puppy could be when he barks continuously.
Luckily, there are solutions to overcome the problem. But before you start resolving the problem first try to find the cause.
Notice How Your Dog Barks
As said earlier dogs bark as a medium of communication and they try to convey something with this behavior. You can easily find out a reason, within a few days, by noticing the way they bark. What you need to notice first is – How is he barking? and secondly – Why is he barking?
As per the analysis, we can categorize a dog’s bark mainly in three types.
Greeting and Being Playful
Playful barks are comparatively shorter and high pitched. When you return home and your dog barks out of excitement then he is showing his affection towards you. This type of dog barking means they are greeting you which accompanies wagging the tail.
Behaviors of a playful dog will include:
- Short barks
- Licking your feet and hands
- Moving around you along with wagging the tail
- Running around or jumping in excitement
If a dog is being defensive or aggressive then his barks will come in loud and fast bursts. More often, a dog barks at strangers, even at the passers-by. This way he tries to demonstrate that strangers should not enter his territory. This type of barking is a signal that the dog is afraid and is trying to defend himself. He considers strangers as a potential threat to his territory.
Many dogs would think of other animals as attackers. An unknown human looks like a burglar to them more often. Moreover, dogs alarm you by barking, to inform you about someone entering the house or the yards.
This can even happen every time, a neighbor or an animal passes by. They also bark on noisy vehicles and car honks.
Getting Bored or Anxious
A dog when bored or anxious barks in a monotone voice repetitively. A dog wagging his tail along with repetitive barking also means a conflicting behavior. The tail wagging shows a happy friendly behavior while barks could be a sign of being alone and disturbed.
He might be trying to convey that he needs something badly and you can help him out. For instance, his barking could mean agitation out of boredom or hunger.
How to Train Your Dog to Stop Barking
Out of all the reasons mentioned, barking playfully is acceptable. But barking on all passersby and barking loud due to aggression or boredom has to be controlled. Follow a few tips about how you can train your dog to change his barking habits.
Teach Your Dog the “Quiet” Command
A pet owner who has an extremely talkative dog will understand, how irritating a barking habit could be. I mean, what would you do if your dog starts barking in the middle of a night disturbing you along with all of the neighbors. He can drive anyone insane with his constant howls, woofs, and barks.
And let me tell you seriously, don’t try yelling at him. It is like barking back in reply to his barks. He will consider that you are joining him, and to gain more attention, he will bark more.
So What Should You Do?
Patiently train him the “Quiet” command. Ask him firmly to stay quiet but not in a scolding tone. If he stops barking even for a while, appraise him and give him a treat. Continue this training for several days until he understands that “quiet” means stop barking.
You can conduct this session for a few minutes daily when you are at home. However, if you stay out for long you can use a pet camera with a treat dispenser. You can see the pet from your workplace and can give him a command to stay quiet when he barks. The treat dispenser can then reward him with a treat. This way you may get lesser complaints from your neighbors.
Moreover, if your dog barks a lot at passers-by then bring him in. Ask him to stay quiet. Do not let him bark on your neighbors, guests or vehicles. Praise him when he stops barking.
You can even choose to leave the dog with a pet sitter. In addition to taking the dog’s care, the pet sitters are experts in teaching the commands.
Keep Your Dog Mentally And Physically Busy
You can bring a puzzle feeder for your dog. This benefits by keeping the dog busy in a playful manner.
You can sometimes plan a fun-game by hiding snacks at different places in the house. Then let the puppy seek around the snacks by sniffing. This shall keep him occupied, mentally as well as physically, for a while if you are not at home.
Apart from that, always try to give some time to your dog when you are at home. You can also take him out on a walk. You may even ask a friend or a neighbor to take him for a walk when you are not in the town. Pet walkers can also do the task for you while you are busy at work till late.
Moreover, many sporty dogs need to do a lot of physical activities to stay healthy. When they do not get enough, they bark in agitation. When dogs stay busy they bark less to get someone’s attention.
Also, a dog that is tired after a busy day, will surely choose to sleep all night calmly. So no complaints from neighbors and you can sleep peacefully as well.
Make The Environment Dog-friendly
A dog will stay calm at home if he enjoys being at home. Hence, make sure your house is dog-friendly.
- The yard must have dog fences that can protect a dog from bolting. And therefore, he must be able to have a safe and happy time in the yard.
- Dogs love to chew on anything, be it a bottle or your furniture. So supply your dog with sufficient chewable toys or a large bone to chew.
- Your dog will also enjoy if you read a book to him or watch TV with him. You can even switch on the TV or music for him when you are busy cooking or doing some other task.
- Make sure your house flooring is not slippery. They cannot play safely on such floorings. A dog house, a dog mat, lots of toys, and tasty snacks, are many of the things to make your dog feel comfortable at home.
- You may also introduce him to another pet, as two or more pets can be good friends at times.
Leave Him with a Pet Sitter
Choose to leave your dog at a Pet Day Care or with Pet Sitters, before going to work. Pet sitters give the pets extensive care and many of them provide a 24*7 service too. They play with your dogs and take them for a walk as well.
Some of the pet sitters also provide overnight service when you are out of town. Your canine will love these centers as it will be an amazing experience for them to play, have treats, and meet new friends. As a result, your dog will remain busy and happy all day, hence he will hardly bark because of boredom or anxiety.
Stopping a dog from barking should not be a stressful process. Try to make it as playful as possible. In dogs, barking is a natural form of interacting out of frustration, boredom or excitement. Hence, there is no technique to eliminate the problem. However, with gradual but consistent training you can minimize his unnecessary barking.
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